The Australian government has said that it will remove some 40 children who remain in migrant detention camps on the Pacific island Nauru by the end of the year.
The announcement came under pressure from the international community which criticised the country’s policy of intercepting asylum seekers attempting to reach Australia and detaining them in offshore detention facilities.
More than 240 child detainees have been relocated in the past few years from the facilities.
“Children have been transferred off Nauru. That’s been happening for some time,” Prime Minister Scott Morrison told 2GB radio on Thursday.
“I haven’t been showboating about it, I haven’t been drawing attention to it. It’s being done in accordance with our policies, our existing policies.”
Over a thousand asylum-seekers remain on Nauru and 46 children have been born in detention since 2012, many of whom are suffering from medical and psychiatric problems.
The government has said that it would not settle the migrants in Australia once they get the medical treatments.