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Thursday, October 28, 2021

Australia asylum: Children held on mainland freed

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The Australian government says the last remaining asylum-seeking children being held in mainland detention centres have been freed.

However, dozens are still being held in centres on the Pacific island of Nauru.

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Those on the mainland will now be able to move more freely in community detention as their claims are processed.

Australia’s tough immigration policy turns back seaborne migrants or puts them in offshore camps.

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Officials in Australia say the last group of children ranged from a baby to a 17-year-old. They were brought from Nauru because family members needed medical treatment.

However, their asylum claims will still be checked and they will be deported if they fail.

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Doctors and activists have pressed the government to release all the children, citing health grounds including mental problems.

The number of asylum-seeking children hit a record high of 2,000 in June 2013 and Immigration Minister Peter Dutton said the latest releases represented a “significant achievement”.

However, some 1,700 adult asylum seekers remain in detention on the mainland.

The average time they are held is now at a record high of 464 days, immigration figures show.

Online Source

The Indian Telegraph Sydney Australia

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