Sri Lanka's Navy arrests boat full of refugees headed here

SRI LANKA'S navy has arrested more than 50 asylum seekers heading by boat to Australia.

A navy spokesman says a fishing trawler was detected with the asylum seekers - including 11 women and 13 children - off the island's north-eastern coast.

"The trawler was intercepted by navy patrol craft 20 nautical miles east of Mullaittivu," the spokesman said.

The 54 asylum seekers on board have been handed over to police for further investigation.

Authorities say the suspects told them that they were trying to leave for Australia.

Read more at ABC News Online.