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​36 Rohingya migrants settle in Jakarta: UNHCR

A Rohingya migrant plays with a child at a shelter in Kuala Cangkoi, Indonesia's Aceh province. Photo: AFP/Chaideer Mahyuddin

September 1, 2015

Thousands of Rohingya migrants fled violence in Myanmar earlier this year and ended up in Indonesia, most of them taking refuge in Aceh. But it seems some of the poor migrants made their way to the capital and are calling it home for the time being.

The presence of Rohingya migrants in Jakarta came to the attention of government officials recently when the Satpol PP (civil service police) apprehended two Rohingyas wandering the streets of Jakarta. One of them was carrying a letter addressed to Governor Basuki “Ahok” Tjahaja Purnama, pleading for the provincial government to assist Rohingya migrants in the city.

“To ensure their safety [in the city], we’re going to keep coordinating with authorities. The role of the provincial government is to ensure migrants can carry on with their lives,” said Ratiyono, head of the Jakarta International Unity and Politics Agency, as quoted by BeritaSatu yesterday. 

The United Nations Commission on Human Rights (UNHCR) confirmed that there are 36 Rohingya migrants who have settled in Jakarta.

“Some of them live in Community Houses that are spread across four regions in Jakarta. One of them is in Tebet, South Jakarta. They all possess UNHCR cards confirming they’re refugees, and we’ve informed them to respect the rules that exist in Jakarta,” said UNHCR Indonesia representative Jefri.

The Rohingya refugees endured many harrowing journeys to make it as far as Indonesia. We hope they can eventually reach wherever they are headed. And if it’s Jakarta, then we hope this city can be a good home to them.

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Rohingya Exodus