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Media Release
No. 26/R/SUAKA-CPG/XII/2018


“Mainstreaming Refugee Rights on Human Rights Movement: Refugees Right Is Human Rights”

(Jakarta, 10 December 2018) The discussion and launching of ‘Know Your Rights: A Handbook for Refugees and Asylum Seekers’ is an activity to commemorate the Human Rights Day conducted by SUAKA (Indonesian Civil Society Working Network for the Protection of Refugee Rights) with its partners at Atma Jaya Catholic University.

Conflict and persecution in the world makes citizens leave their countries and seek asylum in other countries. Various problems are often faced by asylum seekers and refugees, even in transit countries. Violations of the protection and fulfillment of the rights of asylum seekers and refugees can occur due to lack of understanding of government officials in handling refugee issues. In addition, asylum seekers and refugees often do not understand or even aware of the human rights they have.

“To assist asylum seekers and refugees in Indonesia in understanding their rights in accordance with Indonesian law, we (SUAKA) made Know Your Rights: a Handbook for Refugees and Asylum Seekers that was done jointly with from Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS) Indonesia, Legal Aid Institute (LBH) Jakarta, United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and Sandya Institute, “said Febi Yonesta (Chair of SUAKA).

There are 10 themes in the handbook, namely Seeking Asylum in Indonesia; Refugee Status Determination; Rights to Legal Counsel; Rights to Adequate Standard of Living; Rights to Health Services; Rights to Education; Freedom of Association; Rights to Birth Registration; Mixed Marriage; and Detention and Freedom of Movement.

“In addition to helping asylum seekers and refugees in understanding and accessing their rights, the ten themes are expected to help policy makers so that the policies they make are better and Indonesia is ready to face challenges on this issue,” he added.

2018 coincides with the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The effort to meet the protection of human rights is not as mature as its age, especially in the issue of asylum seekers and refugees. “Indonesia as one of the transit countries is obliged to provide protection and fulfillment of human rights for asylum seekers and refugees. “Understanding of this issue must also be expanded to become a discussion in the community so that they are not lay and can coexist with asylum seekers and refugees in Indonesia,” concluded Febi Yonesta.