Mi­grants in In­done­sia boat stand-off brought ashore

Pakistan Observer - - INTERNATIONAL -

LHOKNGA, IN­DONE­SIA— Dozens of Sri Lankan mi­grants stranded on a boat off In­done­sia were al­lowed to come ashore Satur­day, eas­ing a tense stand-off with lo­cal au­thor­i­ties.

The 44 mi­grants, who in­clude many women and chil­dren, had been stuck on a boat off Aceh province for a week as au­thor­i­ties in the western province re­fused to al­low them to dis­em­bark.

But of­fi­cials re­lented Satur­day and al­lowed the mi- grants—who were adrift af­ter their In­dian-flagged ves­sel broke down en route to Aus­tralia—to take refuge in tents set up along the beach.

Po­lice had be­gun tak­ing pho­to­graphs of those brought ashore in a bid to es­tab­lish iden­ti­ties, an AFP jour­nal­ist at the scene said. Au­thor­i­ties had pre­vi­ously said the boat would be towed out to in­ter­na­tional wa­ters to con­tinue on its jour­ney af­ter re­pairs are com­pleted and the weather im­proved.—APP

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