Jakarta (ANTARA) - The Indonesian government has no migrant workers' placement agreement with Sudan on account of the ongoing conflict in the country, according to the Indonesian Migrant Workers Protection Agency (BP2MI).

"(Those working in) Sudan are definitely illegal. Sudan is not a (migrant workers') destination country because of its ongoing conflict, and Indonesia never signed a workers' placement agreement with a country embroiled in conflict," BP2MI Head Benny Rhamdani told ANTARA here, Friday (April 28).

Rhamdani regretted that several Indonesian migrant workers insisted on working in Sudan. However, in this case, the government is at fault, as it has failed to protect its people, he added.

The agency head stressed that the government should be able to prevent the departure of illegal migrant workers as well as evacuate and ensure the safe return of migrant workers to their hometowns.

The Foreign Ministry is currently conducting an evacuation operation for all Indonesian nationals in Sudan, he remarked while adding that the authority will also be responsible for repatriating Indonesian migrant workers despite working illegally in the country.

"The safety of the people must be the country's supreme law. Hence, they must not question whether (Indonesians working in Sudan) departed legally or not in the past. We cannot blame our people, as the government is at fault in this case because it has failed to protect and prevent (their departure)," Rhamdani expounded.

Earlier, Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi stated that some 385 Indonesian evacuees from Sudan arrived at the Soekarno-Hatta International Airport on Friday morning on board Garuda Indonesia flight 991 from Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.

The second evacuees' group will also embark from Jeddah to Indonesia on Saturday (April 29) and is scheduled to arrive on Sunday (April 30), while evacuees in the last evacuation phase will depart for Indonesia on Sunday.

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Translator: Hreeloita DS, Nabil Ihsan
Editor: Sri Haryati
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