When we think of Christmas Island, the first thing that comes to mind is its relation to Christmas festival. But surprisingly there is no relation between Christmas and Christmas Island.
Christmas Island is a small, non self-governing Territory of Australia located in the Indian Ocean, approximately to the northwest of Perth Australia. This Christmas Island is a small island and has only about 1500 residents living on it.
The focal point of Christmas Island is the interest the scientists and naturalist have in its unique and different topography. This is because of its large number of species that have evolved in isolation. The Christmas Island also has pristine and magnificent rainforests that give it a mysterious and alluring invitation.
History of Christmas Island
The discovery of Christmas islands is a mystery. It was first noted on a map produced by Pieter Goos, published in 1666. The British and Dutch navigators wished to include the island in their territories from the early seventeenth century.
The island got its name Christmas Island when Captain William Mynors of the East India Ship Company vessel named the island when he arrived on Christmas Day, 25th December 1643.
From around 1980s and the early 1990s, Christmas Island got many refugees, mostly from Indonesia. Around 2001, Christmas Island received a large number of asylum seekers mostly from Middle East. The coming of the Norwegian cargo vessel MV Tampa that had rescued people from the sinking Indonesian fishing-boat Palapa reflected a quick diplomatic standoff between Australia, Norway, and Indonesia. This stand off ultimately led to the asylum seekers being transported to Nauru for processing. After this another boat full of asylum seekers was taken from Christmas Island to Papua New Guinea for observing.
Later on John Howard, Prime Minister of Australia passed legislation throughout the parliament of Australia that removed Christmas Island from Australia's migration. This meant that asylum seekers arriving there could not automatically apply for refugee status, allowing the Australian navy to relocate them to other countries as part of the Pacific Solution.