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New law accommodates needs of mixed marriages
May 10th, 2011

The House of Representatives has passed into law a bill on immigration, which carries several long-awaited changes.

The bill was passed during the plenary session at the House on Thursday.

According to Law and Human Rights Minister Patrialis Akbar, the new law contains changes on par with the “actual developments” brought by “increased mobility” of people due to globalization and efforts to keep the administration in line with ratified international conventions Indonesia has signed.

Among the changes, he said, were regulations on mixed marriages whereby the spouses and children of mixed marriages can now obtain permanent residency permits more easily.

This includes former holders of Indonesian citizenship and children of divorced parents, where one parent is an Indonesian citizen, he said.

Patrialis added that the changes were made to “increase the recognition of human rights values”.

“Foreigners who legally marry an Indonesian citizen and their children, who still hold temporary and permanent residency permits can [now] take up work openly to fulfill their lives and their family’s needs.”

He further said that those holding permanent residency status for an indefinite period were required to report to the immigration every five years.

“And they will be charged no fees,” he added.

However, those involved in “false marriages with the intent of obtaining immigration documents and to obtain Indonesian citizenship” would be punished, Patrialis said.

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