Police nab 14 migrants off Flores
KUPANG: The police have detained 14 migrants from Pakistan in waters off Mumbawa, Godewa district, in Ngada, East Nusa Tenggara (NTT).
The migrants, who were reportedly heading to seek political asylum in Australia, were found on Wednesday.
A source from the International Organization for Migration (IOM) said the migrants were stranded after their boat was hit by strong waves up to four meters high north of Flores Island.
“They are currently in police custody and, according to plan, we will evacuate them to Maumere before they are flown to Kupang,” said the source, who declined to be named, on Friday.
According to the source, at least four groups of migrants were caught in waters off NTT in the past month. The first batch of 17 were caught near Rote at the end of May.
“In early June, 111 migrants were caught stranded in waters off Sumba Island. The total number of migrants caught so far is 143 people. As many as 68 have been evacuated to Kupang,” he added.