Refugees demand safe passage to Australia

Approximately 120 asylum seekers reaching Indonesian waters are now demanding from the authorities to allow them a vessel back to Australia before they take off from the tanker that rescued them on Sunday.

The asylum seekers were discovered by an Indonesian tanker coming to Indonesia from Australia when they rescued the individuals on Sunday who are now refusing to come down from the tanker until and unless the authorities arrange for a vessel for them to be transported back to Australia immediately.

The officer of the immigration authority of Indonesia Yanuar spoke to the media on Tuesday and said, “Until now, the asylum seekers are still refusing to get off the tanker before their requests are fulfilled. They requested that Indonesia facilitate their journey to Australia, and provide a vessel to get there.”

On the other side, after about two days of deadlock one of the Afghan refugee individuals from the vessel spoke on behalf of everyone and said, “We will get off the boat only if they promise that no one will be put into detention centers and no one will go to jail. I have been sent by the others on the boat to convey this message.” He went back inside the boat right after making the announcement.

No decision has been taken by the Indonesian authorities so far although food is being sent in for the individuals on a regular basis.

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