After months of waiting, the latest group of Rohingya refugees arrival is relocating to Pekanbaru

The International Organization for Migration (IOM), jointly with the national and sub-national government and partners including UNHCR, is supporting the relocation of 119 Rohingya refugees from Aceh to Pekanbaru. The transfer will occur in two batches, starting from today, 17 May 2022 with the last group arriving on 19  May 2022. 

IOM is pleased to be able to provide assistance to this group of refugees, including organization of this relocation movement, with the support of the European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations (ECHO) and the U.S. Department of State's Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration (PRM).

"We thank the Government of Pekanbaru for participating in this relocation initiative which is providing these vulnerable people with more sustainable conditions to stay," said Louis Hoffmann, IOM's Chief of Mission in Indonesia.

Mr. Hoffmann added, "for the arriving families, relocation represents a possibility for a fresh start in a safe environment after they experienced a perilous journey and months of living in temporary shelters in Bireuen and Lhokseumawe."

Upon arrival in Pekanbaru,  IOM will provide these refugees with community-based accommodations similar to other refugees being assisted in Indonesia.

The arrival of this group in Indonesia has seen a number of challenges, not least the risks of such a dangerous boat journey and the threats associated with the smuggling and trafficking of persons typically resulting in irregular travel and entry, rights violations, and physical abuses.  We thank the people of Aceh and the local governments in Bireuen and Lhokseumawe for their humanitarian spirit in extending a hand to these arrivals.

As the world convenes this week at the International Migration Review Forum to review progress on the Global Compact for Migration, Indonesia remains a leading voice for protection of migrants amongst champion governments.

IOM Indonesia currently assists over 7,400 refugees in Indonesia, alongside programs to prevent and counter-trafficking in persons, strengthen protection for labour migrants, reduce exposure and vulnerability to natural disasters, and support integrated border management systems with a particular focus on battling the current COVID-19 pandemic.


For media queries, please contact:

Ariani Hasanah Soejoeti at IOM Indonesia, Tel. +628122726308, Email:,

Itayi Viriri at IOM Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific in Bangkok, Tel. +63 917 890 8785, Email:

SDG 3 - Good Health and Well Being
SDG 10 - Reduced Inequalities
SDG 17 - Partnerships for the Goals