sábado, 30 de maio de 2015

Thailand: Summit on refugees with thousands stranded at sea

Thousands of refugees originating in Bangladesh and most of Burma, who were trying to get to Indonesia and Malaysia, continue on boats adrift in the Gulf of Bengal, abandoned by traffickers.

These smuggling routes, which pass through Bangladesh and Thailand, are under the control of traffickers and networks of local authorities.

The representative of the United States, Anne Richard, called for urgent rescue of these immigrants. Washington, which has maintained a surveillance operation in the airspace of Malaysia, received permission from Bangkok to extend to the Thai territory these flights.

Many of the immigrants from Burma, belonging to the Muslim minority rohingya, pursued in that country. According to Andrea Giorgetta, head of delegation for South-East Asia of the International Federation of human rights (FIDH) .10% of the rohingya population of the State of Arakan in Western Burma (between 80 000 and 100 000 people), have abandoned the country.

In Burma, the rohingya are not entitled to nationality, cannot have more than two children, they are not allowed to circulate in the country or attending school or the University. As a result, are becoming more numerous Hutu refugees.

According to the UNHCR's Assistant High Commissioner, Volker Turk, to resolve the causes of this crisis "is necessary for Burma to assume fully the responsibilities it has towards its inhabitants". This position was rejected by the representative of Burma, Htin Lynn, who protested against a stigmatization of their country.

The Bangkok meeting was convened by Thailand, under pressure from a norrte State Department report on human trafficking, after the discovery, at the beginning of the month, of mass graves with more than 130 bodies of immigrants dead in the middle of the jungle.

The refugee camps in Indonesia receive immigrants from Bangladesh and the Muslim minority rohingya. Frequently, the route chosen by the rohingya, when leave Burma, start by trying to get to Bangladesh, from where depart by boat to Malaysia and Indonesia, two Muslim countries.

Since the beginning of this month, more than 3000 people from Bangladesh and Burma arrived in Indonesia and Malaysia by boat. In reaction to the operation launched by Bangkok against trafficking in immigrants, traffickers abandoned at sea, thousands of people.

According to the UNHCR and the international organisation for Migration (IOM), are currently at sea about 2,600 immigrants from Bangladesh and the minority rohingya.

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