Boat people

From Academic Kids

See Tanka (ethnic group) for people live on fishing boats.

Boat people is a term (usually) referring to impoverished illegal immigrants or asylum seekers who arrive en masse in old or crudely made boats. The term came into common use in the 1970s with the mass exodus of Vietnamese refugees following the Vietnam War.

It is a widely used form of migration for people migrating from Cuba, Haiti, Morocco, Vietnam or Albania. They often risk their lives on dangerously crude and overcrowded boats to escape oppression or poverty in their home nations. In 2001, 353 asylum seekers sailing from Indonesia to Australia drowned when their vessel sank.

Boat people are frequently a source of controversy in the nation they seek to immigrate to, such as the United States, Canada, Italy, Spain and Australia. Boat people are often forcibly prevented from landing at their destination, such as under Australia's Pacific Solution, or they are subjected to mandatory detention after their arrival.

Indochinese Boat People

Events resulting from the Vietnam War led many people in Cambodia, Laos, and especially Vietnam to become refugees in the late 1970s and 1980s. In Cambodia, the genocidal Khmer Rouge regime murdered millions, and many attempted to escape. In Vietnam, the new government sent many people who supported the old government in the south to "re-education camps" and others to "new economic zones". These factors, coupled with poverty, caused millions of Vietnamese to flee the country. In 1979, Vietnam was at war with the People's Republic of China (PRC), and many ethnic Chinese living in Vietnam felt that the government's policies directly targetted them also became boat people. In the open seas, the boat people have to confront forces of nature and elude pirates. The plight of the boat people became a humanitarian crisis. The UNHCR, under the auspices of the United Nations, set up refugee camps in neighboring countries to process them and was awarded the 1981 Nobel Peace Prize for its work. Hong Kong adopted the "port of first asylum policy", and received the largest among of refugees. Many refugee camps were set up in its territories, and it had exerted financial pressure on the government. Most of these refugees resettled in the United States and Western Europe. By the mid-1990s, the number of refugees fleeing from Vietnam have dwindled down. Many refugee camps were closed down, and asylees voluntarily or forcibly repatriated.

See also:

External link

Boat people - a refugee crisis (

Boat People S.O.S (

Website Of Vietnamese Boat People ( People ja:ボートピープル


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