Myanmar authorities seize boat with 93 Rohingya fleeing to Malaysia


The boat of 93 Rohingyas fleeing from displacement camps was seized by authorities in western Rakhine state who had been hoping to reach Malaysia, an official said on Tuesday, as per a report by Reuters.

The boat has been since the third vessel for Malaysia.

Moe Zaw Latt, director of the government office in Dawei, a coastal town in southern Myanmar, said, as quoted by Reuters, that fishermen had reported a “suspicious” boat to authorities.

The country’s navy had stopped the boat and detained them on Sunday. The detained Rohingyas said that they had come from the Thae Chaung camp in the Rakhine state’s capital of Sittwe.

ALSO READ: Rohingyas will not be forcibly sent back to Myanmar: Bangladesh

“They said they ran away from the camp. They said they intended to go to Malaysia,” said Moe Zaw Latt. He stated that authorities were preparing to send them back to Sittwe on Tuesday.

The Myanmar government has been under intensive international criticism following a military crackdown in the western state of Rakhine that pushed some 700,000 Rohingya across the border into Bangladesh amidst accusations of mass rape, murder and torture.

Tensions escalated after the government rejected the 440-page UN report on the crackdown, which stated that top military leaders should be prosecuted for war crimes, crimes against humanity, and genocide for their role in the crackdown.

ALSO READ: UN investigator says genocide against Rohingya ‘ongoing’

The UN investigation was “flawed, biased and politically motivated”, Myanmar’s council representative, while rejecting the report’s findings, said.

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