Indonesia encourages UNHCR to solve refugee issue

The problem now is that the UNHCR's role is not too visible. Even they did not show up when the single refugees were moved to Kalideres

Jakarta (ANTARA) - Indonesia is encouraging the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and countries ratifying the 1951 Refugee Convention to contribute to settling the question of refugees and asylum seekers.

"The context is burden sharing in that how they could assist us, as a transit country, in handling refugees instead of burden shifting in that they burden us and pretend not to know," Director General of Multilateral Cooperation of the Foreign Ministry Febrian Alphyanto Ruddyard said on Tuesday.

Indonesia sees UNHCR should pioneer the implementation of the 1951 Refugee Convention and the countries ratifying the convention should show their moral and legal responsibilities.

"The problem now is that the UNHCR's role is not too visible. Even they did not show up when the single refugees were moved to Kalideres," he said.

The Foreign Ministry reaffirmed that the issue of refugees who are seeking clarity of their plight in Indonesia is not the responsibility of Indonesia which does not ratify the convention.

"Our budgeting system and national legislation system is not designed in such way that enables us to help refugees," he said, adding Indonesia helps the refugees who are being accommodated in Kalideres, West Jakarta, on humanitarian grounds.

Some 100 foreign refugees recently held another demonstration for their basic human rights in front of the UNHCR Jakarta office.

The protesters comprised male individuals or single refugees, mostly from Afghanistan and Syria.

"We have been here for seven years, but we remain deprived from our basic human rights," Abdul, one for the refugees, informed ANTARA.

As a single refugee, Abdul pointed to having no rights to secure a job and own a vehicle. Defending the rights of refugees has been a complicated and lengthy process.

Source: ANTARA News

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