UNHCR grants refugee status to 99 Rohingya migrants in Aceh

UNHCR grants refugee status to 99 Rohingya migrants in Aceh

Rohingya refugees in Aceh. ANTARA PHOTO/Rahmad/wsj

The UNHCR officials have completed the registration of the 99 Rohingya migrants
Jakarta (ANTARA) - The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR)-Indonesia Office officially granted refugee status to 99 Rohingya migrants that three Acehnese fishermen had rescued on humanitarian grounds in June, Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi stated.

"The UNHCR officials have completed the registration of the 99 Rohingya migrants," Marsudi told journalists at a virtual press conference in Jakarta on Thursday.

The registrants comprise 31 women, 41 girls, 16 men, and 11 boys. They are all in good health and have tested negative for the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19), Marsudi revealed.

During their interactions with the local residents in Lhokseumawe, Aceh Province, the Rohingya refugees are mandated to follow preventive measures as necessitated by the Indonesian Government's health protocols to contain the spread of COVID-19 pandemic, she remarked.

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Currently, the refugees' health condition is no cause for concern, and none of the female refugees were pregnant, she noted, adding that the UNHCR and UNICEF officials offered talent assessment and psychosocial support to Rohingya kids.

On July 10, the Indonesian government shifted 99 Rohingya refugees from the old immigration office in Lhokseumawe to the city's Meunasah Mee vocational training center.

Three Acehnese fishermen rescued the refugees on humanitarian grounds after their boat got stranded in the waters off Seunuddon, North Aceh, on June 24, 2020.

The Indonesian government has offered hygiene kits and logistics as well as health services to the refugees. It has also dispatched medical workers to tend to them at their new accommodation.

The registration process for the 99 Rohingya refugees was held on July 5-11.

During the registration process, UNHCR officials found that 25 of the refugee children were traveling without their parents. However, 13 of them were accompanied by their guardians.

The EU's Foreign Affairs and Security Policy spokesperson, Nabila Massrali, has lauded Indonesia's decision to provide a safe-landing and humanitarian assistance to the Rohingya refugees.

"The rescue of Rohingya refugees, who face dire conditions, is a tribute to the international law and demonstrates the generosity of the people and government of Indonesia," Massrali noted in a recent statement.

In cooperation with Indonesian authorities, the UNHCR, and other humanitarian organizations, the EU has pledged to mobilize humanitarian support to address the most urgent basic needs of the affected refugees.

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