Thousands of people who have moved to Australia to start a new life have become Australian citizens today as part of the country's national citizenship day.

According to the Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC) some 2,300 people from 92 countries will take part in citizenship ceremonies on this year's Australian Citizenship Day and Australians are also being urged to affirm their commitment to being a citizen.


2,300 people from 92 countries will take part in citizenship ceremonies on this year's Australian Citizenship Day​
A DIAC spokesman said that the annual event is a fantastic occasion for Australians to welcome new citizens, but also for the country to reflect on the values of citizenship and what it means to be an Australian.

'Australia's newest citizens come from diverse backgrounds, with a range of experiences and journeys to their new lives in Australia,' the spokesman said. 'What they all have in common is a commitment to this country and its people, which will be commemorated in ceremonies nationwide,' he added.

In conjunction with Australian Citizenship Day, the department has launched a social media campaign, encouraging people to post a video on social media site Instagram, explaining how they affirm their loyalty to Australia.

One of the most popular ceremonies is at the National Arboretum in Canberra where more than 100 people from 37 countries became citizens.

The Governor General Quentin Bryce presided over the ceremony, with the new citizens pledging their commitment to the responsibilities and privileges of living in the country.

'Today we celebrate our democratic values, equality and respect for each other, and think about what unites us as Australians. We encourage anyone who is eligible to formally become a part of our community as Australian citizens,' added the DIAC spokesman.

Among the group at the National Arboretum was the Cullen family, originally from Hertfordshire in England. After living in Australia for more than four years, Marie-Louise and Andrew Cullen spoke of their excitement as they, and their five children, prepared to officially become Aussies.

'Becoming Australian citizens for us means accepting Australia as our home, accepting the Australian way of life as something we buy into, and providing a settled environment for our children where they feel part of the country that they will probably go on and live the rest of their lives in,' said Mr Cullen.

'It is an exciting step in our lives and basically formalising that desire within ourselves to be part of Australia,' he added.