TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - Minister of Research, Technology and Higher Education (Menristekdikti) Mohammad Nasir said that there was no "forced labor" of Indonesian students in Taiwan. He asserted that the rumor was an old news which has cropped up ahead of presidential election in Taiwan.
"We have already checked, there is actually no forced labor," said Nasir in Semarang on Friday.
Minister Nasir said his party had coordinated with the Taipei Economic and Trade Office (TETO) regarding the sending of the students. Information that entered the Menristekdikti indicated there were no problems with students in Taiwan.
According to him, the incident took place in 2016. Before the establishment of cooperation, scholarships were given to Indonesian students.
"The determination is new in 2017, then selected in 2018, and this will be dispatched in 2019."
Nasir denied that Indonesian students were given food that was not halal. The campus also provides scholarships for Muslim students.
The Menristekdikti initially claimed to be surprised by the reporting of "forced labor", even though Indonesia and Taiwan had good relations in the field of education.
"In fact, many universities in Taiwan have been ranked among the world's top universities," he said.
Previously, it was reported that around 300 Indonesian students in Taiwan experienced "forced labor". They were forced to work in various factories and only study one day a week.