Indonesia rescues 120 asylum seekers who refuse to disembarkApril 10th, 2012 - 4:30 am ICT by BNO News
JAKARTA, INDONESIA (BNO NEWS) — Indonesian authorities on Sunday rescued 120 asylum seekers from the Middle East, but officials are still trying to convince them to disembark from the vessel, local media reported on late Monday.
The Singapore-registered MT Hermia tanker rescued 120 men believed to be from Afghanistan and Iran in Indonesian waters on Sunday as their sinking boat was trying to reach Australia. The tanker is currently docked in the port city of Merak, located in the province of Banten in western Java.
Banten province maritime police chief Budi Hermawan told the Jakarta Globe that some 100 police officers surrounded the tanker after it arrived, awaiting the people to disembark, but the asylum seekers insisted that they did not want to get down as they want to reach Australia.
While security officials detained four men of Indonesian appearance, apparently crew members in charge of the boat, Hermawan said officials from the police, immigration and the International Organization for Migration (IOM) were trying to negotiate the disembarkment of the immigrants.
Indonesia is commonly used as a transit region for asylum seekers trying to reach Australia illegally. Over 200 people are believed to have died last December when a boat carrying people mostly from Afghanistan and Iran sank in Indonesian waters. Only 47 people survived the incident.
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- Indonesia plans to send detained Sri Lankan asylum seekers home - Nov 16, 2009
- Hundreds missing as migrants' boat sinks off Indonesia - Dec 18, 2011
- Seven migrants dead in boat capsize off Indonesia - Nov 01, 2011
- Sri Lanka navy arrests 54 Australia-bound asylum seekers - Sep 06, 2012
- Australian Government defers processing of Sri Lankan, Afghan asylum claims - Apr 09, 2010
- Australia seeks help from Sri Lanka on flow of asylum seekers - Nov 08, 2009
- 88 bodies retrieved after Indonesia boat disaster - Dec 22, 2011
- Seven kids among dead in Australia boat capsize (Lead) - Dec 16, 2010
- Kids cry for help as 27 die in Australia boat capsize (Second Lead) - Dec 15, 2010
- 37 Pakistanis among dead in Indonesia boat accident - Dec 28, 2011
- Lankans using civil war as excuse to seek asylum: Envoy - Nov 08, 2009
Tags: asylum seekers, banten province, bno, budi hermawan, crew members, four men, hermia, immigrants, indonesian authorities, indonesian waters, international organization for migration, jakarta indonesia, local media, maritime police, merak, police chief, police officers, security officials, sinking boat, western java