Legal Protection of Indonesian Citizen on Mixed Marriage with Rohingya Refugee

Tiurma Mangihut Pitta Allagan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


There are 14 marriages that occurred between the Rohingyas and Indonesian citizens carried
out in 2017. Only nine of them were reported to the refugees handling agency. Some have been
made before coming to Indonesia and some after arrival. These situations resulted in legality
problems of the marriage and its implications. The right to marry is fundamental in the life of
human and is protected as human rights. However, Indonesia is not a signatory to the Convention on the Status of Refugees 1951 and has no legal mechanism to govern their marriages.
Consequently, life for both asylum seekers and refugees is a relentless struggle and one of the
significant challenges for them is in the area of marriage and family. This paper will discuss
how Indonesian private international law provisions and the marriage law accommodate and
protect the rights to marry stateless refugees in Indonesia. This paper primarily discusses the
legal status of stateless persons and refugees amidst the lacuna in Indonesia. Noting the shift
from the principle of nationality evident in case laws, this paper explores the possibility to use lex
domicili as a surrogate connecting factor in determining the law applicable to stateless refugees’
personal status. In relation to marriage, subsequent validation (isbat nikah) could be the solution to ensure family unity. As the lack of valid documentation remains a challenge, the goodwill
of the couple to enter into marriage and establish a family become the most important element.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJurnal Hukum Internasional : Indonesian Journal of International Law
Publication statusPublished - 2020

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