Police will question a group of up to 80 asylum seekers being temporarily housed at Macquarie University following the alleged indecent assault of a young student as she slept in her student accommodation in Sydney's north.
A NSW Police spokesman said the group of male asylum seekers, believed to be from Sri Lanka, would be questioned along with other people staying on campus when an intruder broke into the 20-year-old woman's room in Marsfield and assaulted her early on Thursday morning.
Police said the woman was woken about 3.20am by a man who was indecently assaulting her in her room. The man fled from her room when she began screaming.
Detectives set up a crime scene at the student accommodation on Thursday and forensic police examined the student's room.
They say they are looking for a man aged between 20 and 25, with a thin build, dark skin, and dark short curly hair.
He was wearing no shirt and a pair of grey tracksuit pants at the time of the assault.
Police confirmed the group of asylum seekers would be among those questioned over the attack.
"[Detectives] will speak to as many people as they can, and I am sure that group of refugees will be among them," the spokesman said.
A Department of Immigration and Citizenship spokeswoman confirmed that a group of "irregular maritime arrivals" who were on bridging visas were being housed temporarily at Macquarie University.
The spokeswoman could not confirm reports on 2GB that it was a group of 80 men from Sri Lanka who were living in student dormitories.
"The matter relating to the incident is currently being investigated by the police," she said.
"The contact details of the Red Cross state program coordinator [who organised the asylum seekers' accommodation] have been provided to the police."
The spokeswoman said all transitional accommodation organised for asylum seekers was in private rentals and private accommodation, and none were in public housing.
"All clients in transitional accommodation on bridging visas are being helped to learn Australian community expectations with their case manager's guidance.
"All rental accommodation is expected to be appropriately zoned for residential accommodation with a local council or shire."
Macquarie University has been contacted for comment.
Anyone with information about the assault has been urged to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.