Most of the asylum seekers on Christmas Island who began a hunger strike on Saturday have begun eating again, the Department of Immigration says.
Up to 62 detainees at the island's refugee detention facility had been refusing food after being told they could be transferred to Nauru or Manus Island.
Only nine detainees continued the protest on Tuesday and by Wednesday, most had started taking meals again, a department spokesman said.
"A small group of men have missed meals; however most of them have now been observed eating," he told AAP.
More than 1800 asylum seekers have arrived at the island since August 13 when a panel led by former defence force chief Angus Houston called for a return to sending asylum seekers offshore.
Foreign Minister Bob Carr on Wednesday said Australia's human rights reputation was not suffering from the decision and the ensuing hunger strike on Christmas Island.
"Every country in the world is aware of the pressure of asylum seekers - there wouldn't be a country in Europe that would be at all surprised by the challenge for Australian policy makers or what's happening on Christmas Island," he said.
"Irregular maritime arrivals is a fact of life in all the Mediterranean world and I can tell you from my conversations with colleagues in Asia that Australia doesn't suffer at all from any observation on how we handle this problem."
Mr Carr said he didn't expect there would be a repeat of the desperate actions taken by refugees in Australia previously, including sewing up their lips in protest.
"I would think there's less chance of that because what we're going through now is a very transparent process," he said.
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