Pushing boats back not solution: Marty


Foreign Minister Marty Natalegawa refused on Tuesday to comment on the incident when Australian Navy boats allegedly forced a boat carrying undocumented migrants back to Indonesia but reiterated that Indonesia rejected the so-called “pushing back the boats” policy.

“I am not going to comment on the specific incident… on the movements of our Navy boats, Australian Navy boats, or the boats carrying undocumented migrants themselves. Such a matter is handled by the Coordinating Political, Legal, and Security Affairs Ministry,” Marty said during the ministry’s “Annual Press Statement” event in Jakarta.

“But on the push-back policy itself, let me put on the record our rejection to the policy. Pushing back the boats is not a solution,” he added.

The East Nusa Tenggara Police said on Monday they had found 45 undocumented migrants from Africa and the Middle East aboard a boat floating adrift in the province’s Rote Ndao waters after failing to reach out Australia territory.

Indonesian Navy spokesman Commodore Untung Surapati also confirmed that the boat had been pushed back by Australian authorities and said that the boat had departed from Kendari, Southeast Sulawesi’s capital.

“There was no information on how the boat managed to return to Indonesian soil [after being pushed back]. I was only informed that the immigrants are now being taken care of by the local police and immigration office,” he said.

The incident came amid severely damaged relations between Jakarta and Canberra due to the revelation of a “top secret” document alleging that an Australian intelligence body had tapped the phones of President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, his wife and some Cabinet members in 2009.



Source: http://www.thejakartapost.com/




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