Bibliography File Note.
Journal of Refugee Studies
J Refug Stud
This article examines the assessment of Indochinese refugees through Australia’s first formal refugee status determination procedure between 1978 and 1983. Drawing from a unique set of UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) records, this is the first study to detail how the newly established Determination of Refugee Status (DORS) Committee’s decision-making on Indochinese boat arrivals evolved over time. The Committee provided a basis on which the then Fraser government could process the Indochinese who sailed directly to Australia, while attempting to reassure the Australian public that it remained in control of their arrival. Through revealing new details of DORS’ deliberations, this article provides an insight into inter-departmental debates about the Indochinese boat arrivals, and provides historical context for the Fraser government’s public insistence on accepting only ‘genuine’ refugees.
Status Determination of Indochinese Boat Arrivals