December 24, 2014 | ABC News
The last asylum seeker children being detained on Christmas Island have been moved to the mainland, Immigration Minister Scott Morrison says.
Mr Morrison said a total of 194 people in family groups, including 94 children, were transferred on three separate charter flights from Christmas Island over the last week
“These families are now being accommodated at the Bladin Point facility in Darwin while arrangements continue to release them into the community,” he said.
He said it had always been the Government’s policy to place as many children into the community as possible, especially young children.
“The Government has been reducing the number of children in held detention across the country since coming to office,” he said.
The minister said moving the children to the mainland was “consistent with the Government’s commitment following the passage of legislation to resolve Labor’s asylum legacy caseload”.
“A record number of more than 8,000 children arrived on illegal boats under the previous government.
“In July last year a baby was among 18 people who died at sea in attempts to reach Australia illegally by boat.”
He said asylum seekers who are transferred to offshore processing centres will continue to be assessed by the Governments of Nauru and Papua New Guinea in line with Australia’s agreements with both countries.