Jakarta (ANTARA) - Member of Commission I of the House of Representatives (DPR) Christina Aryani has stressed the importance of Indonesians living abroad registering their marriage to protect the rights of mothers and children.

She conveyed this in response to the case of an eight-year-old boy named Muhammad Yusri in Malaysia who was left without citizenship after both his parents died. The boy's birth had not been reported, and his parents' marriage had not been registered.

"The lesson that can be taken from this case is the importance of reporting marriage to the Indonesian Embassy (KBRI)/Consulate General of the Republic of Indonesia (KJRI) representatives abroad to protect the rights of mothers and children," she said in a statement received on Tuesday.

Children born outside marriage have civil relations with their mothers and their mothers' families as per Article 43 Paragraph (1) of Law Number 1 of 1974 concerning Marriage, she added.

"Thus, as long as it can be proven that Muhammad Yusri was born to an Indonesian woman, Indonesian citizenship can be given to him," she said.

The offer of help from the Malaysian government could also be an option to consider in the case, she added.

"We also received information that the Malaysian government is willing to help in Yusri's citizenship process," she said.

According to her, in responding to such cases, the interests of children must be prioritized.

"What needs to be paid attention to here is when he returns to Indonesia, then with whom will he stay and who will take care of him? These all need to be considered carefully, including the future of the child," she added.

Apart from Malaysia, there have been frequent cases in Hong Kong of children born outside wedlock to Indonesian-foreigner couples and at risk of having no citizenship, the legislator said.

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Translator: Melalusa Susthira, Raka Adji
Editor: Rahmad Nasution
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