4 Mar 2003

UNHCR concerned about PNG government plans to force bordercrossers to return to Indonesia

5:46 pm on 4 March 2003

The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees says it is concerned about the possibility the Papua New Guinea government will force Papuan bordercrossers to return to Indonesia.

Marissa Bandharangshi says the UNHCR will hold talks with the government to find ways to best deal with the repatriation of the bordercrossers, which the PNG Government says is planned for March 13th..

"...UNHCR is very concerned at the moment..... we believe that any talk for this particular group of people of involuntary return is extremely risky, and for that one reason, we're currently in dialogue with the government of Papua New Guinea and we're hoping to resolve the situation."

Marissa Bandharangshi of the UNHCR.