Skip to navigation

Skip to main content


May 1994, Volume 1, Number 4

Ethnic Tensions Rise in Australia

Australia--along with Canada and the US, is one of the three traditional countries of immigration--is experiencing increased ethnic tensions which are putting stress on the country's immigration program. Firebombs exploded at Greek establishments in reprisal against the government's recognition of the former Yugoslav republic of Macedonia (FYROM), one of the last of 58 countries to do so.

On April 11, 2,000 people demonstrated in Wollongong against the Australian Federal Minister for Immigration and Ethnic Affairs decision to refer to people from the FYROM as Slav Macedonians. Australia's publicly-funded ethnic broadcasting service refused to use the name. There are nearly 500,000 Australians from the former Yugoslavia.

Australian MPs have called for those behind the violence to be returned to Europe. Others have renewed demands for stricter curbs on the country's immigration policy.

Robert Milken, "Balkan strife shakes Australia," The Independent, April 10,