The Jakarta Post
The Palembang Immigration Office in South Sumatra had tightened its supervision of undocumented migrants entering the city, an official said on Thursday.
'The intensified supervision on the undocumented migrants at gateways [into the country] is sorely needed to prevent Palembang from becoming a transit destination for them in their efforts to seek political asylum, as previously occurred in 2013,' Palembang Immigration Office head Bogi Widiantoro said as quoted by Antara news agency.
Bogi said the intensified supervision aimed to help eradicate the perception that Indonesia was a soft touch for asylum seekers.
He explained that the supervision, which has been introduced during the last several years, had been effective in reducing the number of undocumented migrants entering the city.
"From January to April, not one migrant was discovered while last year, we netted dozens of undocumented migrants from Pakistan and Afghanistan," he said.
Musi Banyuasin regency and Palembang city are two areas that are frequently used as entry ways by foreign migrants.
Based on information from detained migrants, they had entered South Sumatra via means of inland transportation and aimed to continue their trip along Sumatra's Eastern Highway directly to the United Nations' representative office in Jakarta.
Immigration officials have now been deployed to a number of locations to coordinate with relevant parties, such as police officers and airport security guards. (yln)