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A section of the Christmas Island Detention Center

Immigration Minister Peter Dutton says five detainees were injured during an operation to regain control of the Christmas Island detention centre.

A group of detainees had been involved in a stand-off with staff following the death of a refugee on Sunday.

Mr Dutton said tear gas was used by authorities to bring the unrest under control, but he did not confirm the use of rubber bullets.

He said no police officers were injured.

“I understand there have been five detainees who have received minor lacerations and injuries otherwise as a result of their interaction with the police and their refusal to comply with the directions provided by the Australian Federal Police,” he said.

Mr Dutton said security arrangements at the centre would be reviewed, with additional funding provided to boost security.

He also emphasised the criminal convictions of 113 of the 199 detainees, stating that “the vast majority of people within the Christmas Island detention centre are serious criminals”.

A review of damage was still underway, but Mr Dutton said “well over $1 million of damage” had been caused.

“If people have committed serious offences, including wilfully damaging Commonwealth property, they may face charges of that nature depending on the evidence gathered by the police,” he said.

“But obviously the priority for today has been to restore calm to the centre.”

The Department of Immigration earlier issued a statement to declare the facility was under control, after Mr Dutton had blamed a “core group of criminals” for the riot, which erupted on Sunday night.

The events, which were described as “out of control”, were prompted by the death of Iranian Kurdish man Fazal Chegeni after he escaped from the centre on Saturday.

But the department said the majority of detainees cooperated with service providers in restoring control.

“This morning’s operation to regain control of the centre, and ensure the welfare of those not participating in criminal damage activities, was achieved largely through negotiation and cooperation with detainees,” the statement said.

“The centre remains calm, with detainees secured in undamaged areas of the centre.

“Food, fluid and medical support continues to be provided.”

Back-up staff were flown to the island this morning to relieve workers who had been under pressure since chaos took hold.

On Monday the department denied there was a large-scale riot taking place.

But witnesses told the ABC some detainees inside the centre had started fires, armed themselves with chainsaws, firebombs, machetes, bats and “hunks of iron”.

The department admitted some force was used on a core group of detainees who had built barricades and used improved weapons against authorities.

Service provider staff will conduct a sweep of all compounds to search for contraband including weapons before detainees are moved back into normal accommodation areas.

“A full survey of damage to the centre is yet to be completed, but some common areas appear to be severely damaged,” the department statement said.

“Work to repair the centre will be undertaken as a priority.

“The damage to Commonwealth property is the subject of investigation and identified offenders will be prosecuted.”

Mr Dutton said a coronial inquiry into the circumstances surrounding the death of Mr Chegeni would be conducted.

“As I’m advised there are no suspicious circumstances in relation to the death,” he said yesterday. (ABC News)