Saturday, 18 November 2017 | 19:08 WIB

President Jokowi: Indonesia Will Continue Sending Aid to Rohingyas

PresidentJoko Widodo (jejamo)

JAKARTA, NETRALNEWS.COM - Indonesia President Joko ‘Jokowi’ Widodo affirms that the Indonesian government will continue to send aid to ethnic Rohingyas in Myanmar.

"God Willing, we will send again next week, and the week after that. We have heard that people there are in dire need of food, medicine, instant food and snacks, as well as tents," President Jokowi said at the Presidential Palace in Jakarta on Wednesday (9/13/2017).

The President conveyed the sending of aid to Rohingyas when meeting about 40 ulemas or Islamic clerics from Central Java. The President was accompanied by the Cabinet Secretary Minister Pratikno.

On this day, President Jokowi also oversaw the delivery of over 20 tons of food as humanitarian aid to Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh. The aid was transported using four C130 Hercules aircraft belonging to the Indonesian Air Force from Halim Perdanakusuma Air Base, Jakarta.

"The government actually has been asking for a concrete explanation from the Myanmar government on the refugee situation and in January-February we have also sent container aid, not just 1-2 containers, but about 10 containers that we sent there, with medicine and food on each container,” Jokowi added.

In addition, the President has also sent Foreign Minister Retrno Marsudi to urge the government of Myanmar put priority on the fate of the refugees.

"Since this is indeed related to the political history that exists there, with the economic affairs that exist there, it is actually a very complex problem," said the President.

One of the things to be appreciated by the President is that the Indonesian government has been given the permission by the governments of Myanmar and Bangladesh to enter the refugee camp.

"We have also set up a school there at Rakhine State, and God Willing, we will also establish a hospital in Rakhine State to become the largest hospital there because it is really needed there," added President Jokowi .

Moreover, according to the President, only the Indonesian government is given permission by the Myanmar government to distribute the aid.

"Thank God only the Indonesian government is given space to get into the scene in Myanmar, I think we still want to send more assistance to it," said the President.

Indonesia's earlier assistance was provided in January-February 2017 using containers shipped by sea and takes up to weeks.

"We have sent it by Hercules plane early this morning and we sent it directly to the refugee location even though from the airport there to the refugee site takes overland 6-7 hours because the conditions of Myanmar and Bangladesh border are very heavy If you use yesterday container can be 2-3 weeks new goods until, so because of this urgent need then this morning we send by plane, "said President.

In transporting this assistance, Banda Aceh was made a base camp for the transit of aid delivery. Airplane flight route will stop in Banda Aceh prior to Citagong Airport in Bangladesh.