Foreign Affairs Ministry Says Human Trafficking Cases Involving Migrant Workers Up Sevenfold
TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - Cases of human trafficking (TPPO) involving Indonesian migrant workers (PMIs) increased drastically in the 2020–2023 period, according to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Based on data, 1,800 cases of TPPO were recorded in the 2020–2023 period, reflecting a sevenfold increase, a Young Diplomat at the Ministry’s Directorate of Protection of Indonesian Citizens Rina Komaria informed in Tangerang on Friday.
"From 2020 to 2023, there were 1,800 people who became victims of non-procedural PMI placement to various countries," she said.
According to Komaria, the number of PMIs sent abroad illegally increased seven times, starting from approximately 140 cases in 2020–2021, which increased to 700 cases in 2021–2022, and again climbed to 1,800 in 2023.
She explained that of this number, the majority of illegal PMIs were sent to Cambodia, with their number reaching approximately 1,000.
"In Cambodia, they are employed at companies that have gambling sites through online scammers who are lured by offers of work abroad. They are forced to work there," she informed.
She said she hopes that the police and other related stakeholders will collaborate to immediately follow up on the cases by uncovering TPPO syndicates or arresting their members.
"Therefore, the Foreign Affairs Ministry can take firm action as our efforts to protect Indonesian citizens abroad," she added.
Apart from that, other relevant agencies can also educate the public to avoid job scams on social media that promise employment opportunities with online game operators and in customer services and marketing, among others, in conflict-ridden countries, she said.
"Please be careful when applying for jobs through unverified job vacancies. First, check their legitimacy. Based on our records, the number of Indonesian citizens working in this sector is increasingly spreading, which was previously only recorded in the Philippines and Cambodia, now they have spread to Myanmar, Laos, Vietnam, and even the United Arab Emirates (UAE)," she said.
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