Second Rohingya boat with nearly 200 refugees lands on Indonesia coast

Jakarta, Dec 27 (EFE).- At least 185 Rohingya refugees, including men, women and 32 children, on Monday landed on an island in the far north of the Indonesia’s Sumatra after spending days stranded at sea, marking the second large batch of refugees to arrive in the country in recent days, local authorities said.

The refugees, weakened and sick, arrived in a wooden boat on Monday evening at the Ujong Pie beach on the coast of the Aceh province, and some of them were admitted to health centers, the police said in a statement.

Aceh regional police spokesperson Kombes Winardy said Monday night that the group of 185 immigrants included 83 men, 70 women and 32 children.

Winardy said that the refugees had been temporarily accommodated in different facilities in the area and the sick were being provided medical attention at the local health center.

Many of the refugees had become very weak, especially due to dehydration, after spending many days drifting at sea.

Authorities are compiling data about the conditions and origin of the group and have activated other state agencies to tackle the situation, the spokesperson said,

He added that inter-sector coordination was necessary to resolve the Rohingya issue, as their arrivals were becoming increasingly frequent.

This is the second Rohingya boat to arrive on the coast of Aceh, Indonesia’s coast, after a group of 57 refugees – most of them male, including 13 minors – had landed on a beach in the same region on Sunday.

Nonprofits told local media outlets that the group that arrived on Monday was from a boat that had been stranded at sea for nearly a month and had been suffering food and water shortages, which led to around 20 refugees dying during the journey.

Local media said that the group had been travelling towards South Asia by sea after escaping from refugee camps in Bangladesh, although the Indonesian authorities have not yet confirmed the origin and destination of the boat.

Therefore, it remains unclear if it is the same boat which raised alarm at the global level in recent weeks, after the United Nations and other international bodies issued appeals to rescue a boat, said to be carrying around 200 Rohingya refugees. EFE


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