Asylum seekers and refugees in Indonesia: Problems and potentials

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Journal Article
Cosmopolitan Civil Societies: an interdisciplinary journal, 2016, 8 (2), pp. 22 - 42
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Asylum seekers and refugees in Indonesia increasingly experience protracted waiting times for permanent settlement in other countries. They have few, if any, legal rights, coupled with extremely limited financial resources and no access to government provided services. In response to the prospect of living for many years in this difficult and liminal space, a small community of refugees in the West Java town of Cisarua has built relationships, skills and confidence among themselves and with host Indonesians to respond to identified needs. This paper outlines the main political and policy frameworks affecting the lives of refugees in Indonesia and then draws on research interviews and participant observation to illustrate the resilience and agency utilised by the community to mitigate uncertain futures. The major focus is on education for asylum seeker/refugee children.
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