The Jakarta Post
Immigration officers arrested eight refugees for allegedly violating immigration rules during an operation in several community houses in Medan, North Sumatra, early on Friday.
The Law and Human Rights Ministry’s North Sumatra immigration office head, Yudi Kurniadi, said seven refugees were arrested for allegedly violating immigration rules, which prohibited them from leaving their community houses without permission at night. Meanwhile, one refugee was apprehended for allegedly possessing a sharp weapon.
Yudi said the eight refugees were from Afghanistan, Iraq, Pakistan and Somalia. They were arrested in three different community houses, namely My Mansion, Wisma Rajawali and Wisma Rizki.
Five refugees are being detained at the Polonia immigration office, while three others are at the Medan immigration office, he went on.
“We detained them as sanctions for violations they committed. This aims to create a deterrent effect,” Yudi told The Jakarta Post on the sidelines of the operation on Friday.
He said immigration officers conducted the operation as a follow up to complaints from several locals about the behavior of refugees in the city. He acknowledged that Medan was accommodating many refugees waiting for placement in a third country.
“The number of refugees in Medan has reached 2,046 people,” said Yudi, adding that all refugees were placed in 21 community houses, fully covered by the International Organization for Migration (IOM), across Medan. (ebf)