Asylum Seekers in Indonesia, UNHCR Pressured to Find Solution

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Petir Garda Bhwana

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  • TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - Social Affairs Ministry’s Director General of social security and protection, Harry Hikmat, pressed the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) to quickly come up with a solution in regards to the asylum seekers that are currently accommodated at an area in Kalideres, West Jakarta.

    “Whether they would later be relocated or transported back home with UNHCR’s full support or be sent to the country the asylum seekers’ country of destination that has the capacity to accommodate refugees,” said Harry on Monday, July 15.

    He says that Indonesia’s position in this matter is mainly as a country of transit for the numerous refugees as the government could not legally accept asylum seekers considering Indonesia has yet ratified conventions regarding refugees.

    Harry pointed out that the obligation to support the refugees’ future lies with the UNHCR.

    The Ministry of Social Affairs recorded at least 1,093 refugees that are being temporarily placed at Daan Mogot, West Jakarta, which comes from countries such as Afghanistan, Somalia, Sudan, Iran, Irak, China, Ethiopia, and Yemen.

    The Indonesian government has assisted the refugees by providing the refugees with a public kitchen, regular logistics, and two meals for every refugee each day.

    According to Harry, most of the asylum seekers wish to continue their refuge to Australia but are still waiting for legal requirements to be completed by the UNHCR.

    M YUSUF MANURUNG