The principle instrument for the international protection of refugees is the 1951 Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees ('the Refugee Convention') and the 1967 amendment entitled the Protocol Relating to Refugees. Australia ratified the Refugee Convention on 22 January 1954 and the Protocol on 13 December 1973. While Australia remains a signatory to these instruments, it is bound by their provisions.
The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) is responsible for overseeing the Refugee Convention and assisting refugees. Their website contains much information regarding the Refugee Convention, including a special section on Protecting Refugees.
This site includes:
• Text of the 1951 Convention and 1967 Protocol.
• The most frequently asked questions about the Convention, and their answers.
• Signing on could make all the difference - why should countries sign on to the Convention?