Abbott on Nauru child abuse: “occasionally... things happen”

LABOR has blasted Prime Minister Tony Abbott for responding "occasionally... things happen" while discussing the Moss review into asylum seekers' allegations of sexual abuse on Nauru.

Labor immigration spokesman Richard Marles said Mr Abbott needed to think before he spoke.

Background: Nauru rapes likely go unreported

"To dismiss what has occurred here as being the proverbial happening as he has done in the past is to utterly miss the point," Mr Marles said.

He said the government's promise to implement all 19 recommendations was not enough.

"We need for the government to give the Australian people a sense of confidence that every person within these detention facilities is safe," Mr Marles said.

Background: 30% kids in detention with mental health disorders

Greens Senator Sarah Hanson-Young has called for an apology from former Immigration Minister Scott Morrison for sacking 10 Save the Children workers on Nauru.

"The Abbott government's eagerness to shoot the messenger meant that, in this case, they shot first and asked questions later."