Banda Aceh, Aceh (ANTARA) - The National Commission on Human Rights (Komnas HAM) gives special attention to the Rohingya refugees who have been stranded on Aceh throughout 2022.

"Komnas HAM also pays special attention to Rohingya refugees entering Aceh many times through territorial waters," head of the Komnas HAM branch office in Aceh Sepriady Utama said in Banda Aceh on Sunday.

Utama said that throughout 2022, Rohingya refugees had entered Aceh in five occasions. On March, as many as 114 people were stranded at Bireuen District.

In November, in two separate occasions in North Aceh District, a total of 229 refugees were stranded; and in December, one occasion each in Aceh Besar District in which 57 people were stranded, and Pidie where 185 people were found on same situation.

"At the end of 2021 the Rohingya, people were also stranded in the waters of North Aceh District, this problem also became our concern," he added.

Komnas HAM had conducted monitoring on site in terms of Rohingya refugees handling, Utama said.

Based on findings and in-depth analysis that follows legal and human rights instruments, in terms of handling Rohingya refugees, Aceh Government was mandated to accept and facilitate foreign refugees temporarily, in accordance to Presidential Decree Number 125 of 2016 about handling foreign refugees

Such was needed in order to avoid acts of resistance against refugees' arrival.

"We also recommend the formation of a task force for handling foreign refugees as mandated in the Home Affairs Ministry Circular Number 300/2307/SJ about the Establishment of a Task Force for Handling Foreign Refugees in the province," he noted.

He also explained that during 2022, Komnas HAM addressed as many as 44 files of public complaints.

The 44 cases have been followed up in accordance with Law Number 39 of 1999 about human rights, including through a monitoring and investigation mechanism as well as a pre-mediation mechanism.

The 44 cases included one related to the right to life, four to the right to justice, and six cases to the right to a sense of security — which include the issue of Rohingya refugees.

"Then, the rights to welfare are 16 cases, children's rights are 12 cases, and not competencies are five cases," he said.

Of the 44 complaints, the ones which stuck out the most throughout 2022 were allegations of sexual violence against children and the stranding of Rohingya refugees, he stated.

"In regards to child cases, on top of supporting law enforcement, we also encourage regional governments to actively provide special protection to victims of sexual violence and fulfill their rights as mandated by the Child Protection Law and Aceh Qanun (Islamic Criminal Code Bylaw) Number 9 of 2019," he concluded.

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Translator: Rahmat Fajri, Mecca Yumna
Editor: Azis Kurmala
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