Amidst all the controversy over the misbehavior of some Russian nationals in Bali, rumors have swirled that there is a “Kampung Rusia” (Russian Village) on the island, an exclusive enclave for foreigners from the former Soviet state where Russians live inside their own bubble.
On Saturday evening, officials from the Denpasar Immigration Office, as well as the Bali office of the Ministry of Law and Human Rights, did an inspection at Parq Ubud, a complex containing apartments, co-working spaces and other facilities, that was rumored by some to be the site of the supposed Russian Village.
A video posted to the Denpasar Immigration Office’s official Facebook page detailing the operation described it as targeting “a concentration point for foreign nationals”.
The caption goes on to say, “During this operation, the team examined immigration documents from visitors and the person in charge of the location. From the results of this surveillance, no immigration violations were found by foreigners.”
While officials said there were no visa or immigration violations found, they did report that most of the complex’s occupants were Russians.
Denpasar Immigration head Tedy Riyandi told Radar Bali that the inspection found that of the 90 residential units in the complex, 50 percent were occupied by Russians while the rest were citizens of various countries including Kazakhstan, Germany and Indonesia.
He also said that all of the passports and residency permits held by the complex’s overnight guests were valid. Four held KITAS (limited stay permit visas).
I Made Dwi Surya Permadi, the general manager of Parq Ubud, told the media that the complex had no special rules regarding the citizenship of guests in the complex.
“If you say specifically that we only receive Russian guests, I say 100 percent no. We have never blocked non-Russian people from coming here,” he said on Sunday as quoted by Tribunnews.
He also denied rumors that the complex was owned by Russians, saying Parq’s founders were Balinese, German and American.
In January, The New York Times published a feature story about Russians and Ukrainans living in Bali with a focus on Parq Ubud, which it described as having become “a haven for both Russians and Ukrainians on the Indonesian island of Bali” since the war between the two countries began.
In mid-March, Bali Governor Wayan Koster called on the central government to revoke Visa on Arrival privileges for Russian and Ukrainian citizens amid a rise in cases involving foreigners overstaying their visas or working illegally on the Island of Gods. Ukraine’s ambassador to Indonesia complained about the move, calling it unfair to lump Russian and Ukrainian citizens together
According to Ngurah Rai Special Class I Immigration Office, between January 1 and April 2, 40 foreigners were deported from Bali, 14 of whom hailed from Russia. Most were deported for visa overstays.