Handling Refugees in Indonesia Constrained by Funds: UNHCR

Deputy Director of UNHCR in Indonesia, Thomas Vargas (front) and Director of Human Rights, Indonesian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Achsanul Habib during a conference in Jakarta (Photo: Sajadi / MINA)

Jakarta, MINA – The United Nations Agency on Human Rights (UNHCR) is currently experiencing several obstacles in dealing with refugees in various parts of the world, including in Indonesia. These obstacles, especially the problem of decreasing fundation.

Deputy Director of UNHCR in Indonesia, Thomas Vargas said on Tuesday July 7 in Jakarta, there is a downward trend in the funding commitment of most donor countries towards the handling of refugees, especially through international organizational channels.

This has resulted in a decline in the ability of international organizations to handle refugees, such as UNHCR and IOM. Globally in 2018, UNHCR was short of funds reaching around US $3.5 million from the total needs of $8.2 million.

Meanwhile, although Indonesia is a non-pro-1951 refugee convention and not a member of UNHCR. But until the end of May 2019, Indonesian Ministry of Foreign Affairs noted that Indonesia has accommodated around 13,997 refugees from 43 countries.

“Because of the limitations of UNCHR, we are collaborating with our partners such as Dompet Dhuafa, PMI, Suci Foundation, IOM, which we help refugees, but of course our main partner is Indonesian government,” Thomas said.

Although refugees do not have the right to work, UNHCR hopes to work together with young Indonesian entrepreneurs to recruit refugees who have the talent and interest to enter business sector.

Meanwhile, Director of Human Rights, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Republic of Indonesia, Achsanul Habib said his institution has been working with ministry of law and human rights, UNHCR and DKI Jakarta Provincial Government to return the refugees to shelter.(TL/Sj/P2)

Mi’raj News Agency (MINA)