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International students more likely to be robbery victim in Australia: study


08:35, August 12, 2011

CANBERRA, Aug. 11 (Xinhua) -- International students are more likely to be the victim of robbery for some jurisdictions compare with Australian reference populations, a new study showed on Thursday.

The Australian Institute of Criminology analyzed the rates of assault, robbery and theft of international students from 2005 to 2009, after media suggested Indian students in particular were being targeted.

The study indicated that international students are less likely or as likely to be victims of physical assault and other theft compared to Australian general public, but it also found the students suffered higher than average rates of robbery.

"The level of crime experienced by international students of different nationalities varied, with Indian students typically experiencing the same or a heightened incidence of assault and other theft than other student nationalities," the study said.

The institute looked at almost 15,000 reports of crimes against students from India, China, South Korea, the United States and Malaysia, the five largest groups of student visa holders, and the report downplayed race as a motive in such crimes.

"That said, there was nothing in the overall findings that lends support to the view that Indian students have been singled out primarily for racial reasons," the institute's director Adam Tomison said in the report released on Thursday.

Rather, the higher rates of robbery against Indian students could probably be explained by the fact they were more likely to work in jobs that involved working late night shifts alone.

The institute said further research was needed to understand which risk factors were most influential in crimes against international students, which could help improve the safety of students who came to Australia.

The study also said that more than 300,000 foreign students enroll in Australian institutions every year, with international education now worth 18.8 billion U.S. dollars annually, the nation 's third-largest export industry.


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