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Jakarta Post

Aceh shows spirit needed to solve Rohingya crisis

  • Aung Kyaw Moe


Yangon   /   Mon, October 12, 2020   /  11:28 am
Aceh shows spirit needed to solve Rohingya crisis This picture taken on Sept. 9, 2020 shows a group of Rohingya women queueing up for medical check-ups at a transit camp after nearly 300 Rohingya migrants came ashore on the beach in Lhokseumawe on the northern coast of Indonesia's Sumatra island. When hundreds of Rohingya paid traffickers to escape their squalid refugee camp in Bangladesh earlier this year they were promised they were just a week away from a new life in Malaysia. Instead, the group of mostly women and children suffered more than 200 days of terror on the high sea until they landed this week on Indonesia's northern coast. (AFP/Rahmat Mirza)

On Sept. 7, 2020, Ujong Blang beach in Lhokseumawe, Aceh, witnessed humanity’s candid showcase. Defying orders from local authorities, villagers pulled ashore a wooden boat packed by almost 300 Rohingya refugees, most of them women and children. It was believed that the boat had been stranded at sea for six months before it finally landed on Ujong Blang. In stark contrast to the reluctance of the governments in the region to deal with the refugee problem, people of Aceh decided to take the matter to their own hands. It was not the first time the people of Aceh demonstrated their solidarity. Three months ago, another boat was pulled after being spotted by local fishermen from Lancok village, just a few kilometers away from Ujong Blang. Ninety-nine Rohingya refugees, 30 of them children, in a dire condition, were rescued. Images of villagers arguing with the local authoritie...

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