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Rights group urges release of Rohingya man

JAKARTA: An Indonesian rights group on Tuesday urged for the release of a Rohingya man who has been in detention for the last seven years.

Iman Husein, 54, was arrested in 2012 for alleged involvement in the smuggling of Rohingya refugees. He has since been languishing in an immigration detention center in the capital Jakarta.

Andi Amien Assegaf, a lawyer for the Indonesia Concern Group for Rohingya, said Husein is a registered refugee with the UN and a victim of genocide in Myanmar.

“Husein should have been handed over to the UN Refugee Agency in the first place so that the agency could guarantee his rights as a refugee,” Assegaf told Anadolu Agency on Tuesday.

As a result of the detention, Husein was forced to live separately from his wife and children, who are currently living in the port city of Makassar in Indonesia.

The lawyer also urged the immigration officials to release Husein and treat him humanely.

Assegaf recalled that 160 Rohingya refugees in the port city of Makassar in South Sulawesi province are waiting to be resettled in a third country.

“Moreover, there are school-aged refugee children among them. It is upsetting as they cannot get a proper education,” he said.

In January 2019, the Rohingya refugees in Makassar held a protest in front of the UN offices. They demanded assurance regarding their resettlement to a third country.

Hundreds of thousands of Rohingya refugees have fled Myanmar after Myanmar forces launched a crackdown on the minority Muslim community in August 2017.

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