A total of 29 citizens, comprising of twenty-five (25) detained illegal Border Crossers, four (4) stranded citizens, and a baby were successfully repatriated back into Papua New Guinea from Jayapura through the Skouw/Wutung International Border on Wednesday 03 June 2020.
The 25 illegal border crossers were released after completing their prison terms in Indonesia, were escorted by the Indonesian Authorities, and the PNG Consul General in Jayapura Colonel Geoffrey Wiri to the Batas Border Post, and handed over to the PNG West Sepik COVID-19 Team at the border.
Rapid COVID-19 testing was carried out by officials from the Institute of Medical Research (IMR) and Provincial Health Authorities at the border.
The repatriated citizens are currently undergoing 14 days quarantine at Golden Medallion hotel, a government-paid quarantine facility in Vanimo.
After the 14 days quarantine, they will be released back into their communities and families.
The next batch to be repatriated from Indonesia is 13 students mostly scattered around Indonesia.
The Department through its Missions in Jakarta and Jayapura anticipates repatriating them in the coming week.
In a statement released by the Department of Foreign Affairs, the Department appreciates the Government’s collective effort, through its whole of Government approach to addressing COVID-19 pandemic.
The Department also commended the Sandaun Provincial Government and border agencies in executing a successful repatriation exercise and look forward to repatriating all remaining PNG stranded citizens in Indonesia.