Thursday, July 12, 2018

"Influx of [around 550] refugees from Yemen divides South Korean resort island"

The Yemeni refugees never imagined they would end up on a resort island in South Korea. The asylum seekers described looking at a map of the world to see where they could flee to without applying for a visa. Then in December, the budget airline AirAsia began a direct flight from Malaysia to Jeju, two places with visa-free access for Yemenis.

Amid the influx of asylum seekers, the government in June removed Yemen from the list of countries allowed visa-free access to Jeju. Immigration authorities have barred the refugees from travelling to mainland South Korea, and while they are allowed to work, employment has been restricted to fishing, fish farms and restaurant work. Many remain unemployed.


The refugees are stuck in limbo, unable to leave the island and unsure how long they will be allowed to remain after fleeing a civil war