The remains of eight Myanmar fishermen were cremated on Wednesday at the Tie Cang Tien crematorium in Tanjung Morawa, Deli Serdang in North Sumatra.
The eight fishermen were killed in a clash with Rohingya refugees at the Belawan Immigration Detention Center.
The cremation was carried out without the presence of relatives or representatives from the Myanmar government by the Indonesian immigration office, assisted by the police and Pirngadi General Hospital in Medan. The cost of cremation was covered by the Medan city administration.
Head of the immigration division at the North Sumatra regional office at the Justice and Human Rights Ministry, Rostanov, said despite their absence, the Myanmar government through its embassy in Jakarta had agreed to the cremation of the eight.
He said the agreement had been conveyed by the Myanmar Embassy to the immigration authorities after it had contacted the relatives of the deceased.
“We received an agreement to the cremation of the eight Myanmar fishermen on Tuesday afternoon [...] They entrusted everything to us, including the cremation today [Wednesday],” Rostanov told The Jakarta Post at Pirngadi Hospital before the cremation process.
The cremation commenced when the police handed over the remains of the Myanmar citizens symbolically to the immigration office at Pirngadi Hospital. Shortly thereafter, the remains were taken to the Tie Cang Tien crematorium, where they will stay temporarily until further development from the Myanmar Embassy in Jakarta.
The fishermen were identified as Aye Win, 23; Myo Oo, 20; San Lwin, 45; Aung Thu Win, 24; Aung Than, 44; Min-Min, 42; Win Tun, 32; and Nawe, 23. Three other fishermen survived the incident after they fled from the detention center saying they had been sent to the Immigration headquarters in Jakarta.
Belawan Police deputy chief Comr. Robertus A. Pandingan said the cases’ dossier would be submitted to the prosecutor’s office immediately.
He added that 17 Rohingya refugees were named suspects and one witness in the case file.
In Batam, Riau Islands, the rise of Aung San Suu Kyi’s presence in the Myanmar political arena brought new hopes for Myanmar people detained at the Tanjungpinang Immigration Detention Center.
As a result of the democracy figure’s influential role in the country they said they wished to return to their country and cancel plans to seek asylum in other countries.
Tanjungpinang Immigration Detention Center warden Surya Pranata told the Post on Monday that 13 Myanmar citizens currently wished to immediately return to Myanmar but were hampered by travel documents yet been issued by the embassy.
“The rise of Aung San Suu Kyi has apparently brought new hopes for the country,” said Surya.
According to Surya, among the 13 Myanmar citizens waiting to return home are individuals implicated in illegal fishing, while the rest were illegal immigrants caught entering Indonesia without legal documents as they wished to seek asylum.
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