Please Update your browser

Your browser is out of date, and may not be compatible with our website. A list of the most popular web browsers can be found below.
Just click on the icons to get to the download page.

Jakarta Post

Frustrated, depressed refugees in limbo

Wed, February 28, 2018   /   06:23 am
  • /

    Sticking together: A Somalian refugee and her children walk in front of the West Jakarta Immigration Detention House. JP/ Rifky Dewandaru

  • /

    Finding happiness: Two children make the most of their circumstances. JP/ Rifky Dewandaru

  • /

    Let me in: A refugee takes a peak at the detention house. JP/ Rifky Dewandaru

  • /

    A friend in need: Two Afghan chat in front of the detention house. JP/ Rifky Dewandaru

  • /

    Whatever means necessary: Refugees use temporary shelter to seek relief from the blistering sun. JP/ Rifky Dewandaru

  • /

    Much needed assistance: Refugees receive clean clothes from volunteers and social activists. JP/ Rifky Dewandaru

Rifky Dewandaru

More than 10,000 refugees are currently trying to survive in Indonesia, with some of them even living in front of the West Jakarta Immigration Detention House.

Coming from conflict-ridden countries, such as Somalia, Afghanistan and Sudan, they want the detention house to open its doors to seek shelter from the sun and heavy rains. Child refugees are also in need of some playground space.

Indonesia only has 13 detention houses. The largest one in Tanjung Pinang, Riau, can house 400 people. In comparison, the detention house in West Jakarta can only accommodate 150.

Many volunteers and residents try to help the refugees by providing them with food and clothing.

The government, too, is striving to help them despite many technicalities and obstacles.

The limited capacity of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees in Indonesia to handle the rising number of refugees and the lack of third-country placements result in a long waiting time for decent shelter.

Minimal information and assistance to enable the refugees to help themselves and their families also cause frustration and depression among them.

In addition, the general lack of access to health services, education and employment make them vulnerable to various crises.

The waiting list of those in need of a proper abode and health care is thus further extended. They are also left without the right to employment and the means to survive during their stay in Indonesia or placement in third countries.