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Rohingya in Indonesia Stage Protest Over Negligence

Makassar: Rohingya refugees who have been in a limbo for years in Indonesia staged a demonstration demanding resettlement and dignified life in front of the UNHCR and IOM offices at Makassar, Indonesia on 9th August.

At 2.00 p.m. local time, around 100 Rohingya refugees gathered and demonstrated in the front street of the Menara Bosowa office of UNHCR holding banners and chanting slogans.

The Rohingya refugees in Indonesia have been lingering there without any viable solution for five to eight years, where they cannot work lawfully, access public services and acquire education. They expressed extreme anxiety that they are unable to bear the panic of this trapped life.

Rohingya refugees in Indonesia stage protest demanding a viable solution
in front of the UNHCR and IOM office. (Photo Source: Rvision)

“We are genocide victims. Many of us have been here for eight years. We are being left unsettled, kept in limbo without any solution and denied our basic human rights. We urge UNHCR to act to end our sufferings.” said Jonaid, 25. “I don’t see good dreams anymore except nightmares. It is all dark. I feel I should commit suicide. At least I will get rid of this cursed life,” he further added with grief.

According to some of the protester’s statement, earlier the UNHCR told them in response to their query that there is a possibility some may never be resettled in their lifetime, which led them to the street in protest.

A Rohingya refugee is expressing his anxiety during the protest.
(Photo Source: Rvision)

The demonstration was held while UN High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi was visiting Indonesia for the 7th Bali Process Ministerial Conference where ministers from 45 member countries, and senior officials from UNHCR, UNDP, and IOM attended in order to discuss combating human trafficking, cooperation processes between Myanmar and other countries and the repatriation process in Arakan (Rakhine).

After around three hours, demonstrators handed over a letter to the UNHCR office, who received the letter assuring them to have a meeting on 15th August.

Read more on Rohingya refugees in Indonesia:

Indonesia says Bali Process failure on refugee crisis “must not happen again”

However, the situation in Myanmar is not conducive to the return of the Rohingya refugees.

Expressing his hope, one of the participants in the protest said, “We hope that UNHCR will give special attention to us, the genocide survivors so that we can start a safe life with hope.”

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