The six foreigners were identified as Fan Shenghong, Cui Henggo, Hang Yongsheng, Wang Sisen, Han Baolin, and Chu Kaishan, Adjunct Senior Commissioner Bambang Haryo Wibowo, chief of the Rote Ndao Police, stated.
"The six Chinese citizens are all from the city of Jiangsu in China," he noted.
On the basis of police investigation, the six Chinese were keen to sail to Australia aboard a wooden boat named MV Indah, with the voyage taking three nights.
However, on arrival in the Australian waters, the six Chinese were intercepted by the Australian water police and then secured by local security forces, and checks for two nights were conducted in the middle of the sea.
The six Chinese foreigners were accompanied by two Indonesian citizens, Aba and Madan. After the inspection and confiscation of the vessels by Australian security, they were then given a new boat in place of MV Indah to sail back to Indonesia, with two jerrycans of diesel.
On arrival in the Indonesian waters, at around 8:15 a.m. local time, their boat ran out of fuel right behind the FaiFua salt pond in East Rote District.
"Coincidentally, the patrol boat from the Rote water police and navy on joint patrol found them. During inspection, six foreigners were found on board," he noted.
After being secured by the local police, the police then called a health official in Rote Ndao District to examine whether the six Chinese citizens had contracted the coronavirus.
"Earlier, we had a paramedic officer to examine them. However, the results were negative for the presence of coronavirus," he noted.
Currently, the local police are yet coordinating with the Kupang immigration authorities to take the next step and move them to Kupang.
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