49 hajj pilgrims with Philippine passports return to Indonesia

Jakarta (ANTARA News) - A total of 49 Hajj pilgrims with Philippine passports have returned to Indonesia on the second day of repatriation, carried out by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

This last batch was accompanied by the embassy staff through Terminal 2 Banda Soekarno Hatta, Banten, on Saturday morning at 12 pm.

In the process, the pilgrims also received a briefing from the staff of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Religious Affairs before being sent to Pondok Gede Hajj Dormitory to stay and undergo an interview process by the police.

"After this, they will be accommodated temporarily in a dormitory, then there is an interview process and the examination of the immigration authorities and the police. After that, they could return to their homes," said Arif Hidayat, an official from Directorate of Indonesian Citizens Protection and Legal Entities of Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Although the government has managed to repatriate pilgrims he warned that the legal process in the Philippines is still ongoing and is expected to be completed properly.

Overall, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has repatriated 106 Indonesian citizens consisting of 28 men and 78 women, of who 42 are aged over 60, and used Philippines passports.

Most came from nine regions, namely South Sulawesi, West Sulawesi, Southeast Sulawesi, Central Sulawesi, East Kalimantan, North Kalimantan, Jakarta and Lampung. Meanwhile, others are citizens who are domiciled in Sabah, Malaysia. (*)

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