Lankan asylum seekers leave Indonesia for Australia, Romania

2009-12-29 08:49:46

An Indonesian official says 47 Sri Lankan asylum-seekers are being flown to Romania and Australia for resettlement, the Jakarta Globe reported.

Law and Human Rights Chief I Gde Widiarta of the western province of Riau Kepulauan says the 47 were among 78 ethnic Tamils rescued from a ship by Australian Customs officials in October.

The boat’s engine broke down in international waters near Indonesia. Scores of boats have been intercepted in the region this year.

Romania was accepting 16 asylum seekers and Australia was taking 31.

Widiarta said 15 Tamils from the same ship were resettled in Canada and Australia earlier this month.

Indonesia is a major launching point for Sri Lankans, Afghans and Iraqis seeking refuge in Australia

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