CHINA TOPIX

Updated 2:12 PM EST, Wed, Jan 29, 2020

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Myanmar Faces Blame, Pressure Over Southeast Asia ‘Boat People’ Crisis

Rohingya Migrants

(Photo : Reuters) Malaysia called the attention of Myanmar to stop the mass departure and exodus from its shores as numerous Rohingya migrants adrift in the unsafe boats in the Andaman Sea.

Malaysia called the attention of Myanmar to stop the mass departure and exodus from its shores as numerous Rohingya migrants adrift in the unsafe boats in the Andaman Sea.

According to Reuters, the 120,000 illegal migrants from Myanmar had already been taken in by Malaysia but Malaysian deputy prime minister Muhyiddin Yassin said that Myanmar must take responsibility to Ronghiya migrants. "What is the responsibility of the Myanmar government...is there any humanitarian aspect for them to solve this matter internally?" the Malaysian deputy prime minister said. He also said that the burden should not be taken by the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) members.

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It is said that Southeast Asian nations has been prodded by the United Nations not to push back Rohingya Muslims and Bangladeshis' boatloads, who are in persecution and poverty as well as sickness and starvation in the Andaman Sea. Moreover, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) said that there are estimated 25,000 Rohingya Muslims and Bangladeshis went aboard smugglers' boats in the first quarter of 2015, Reuters added.

According to ASEAN Parliamentarian for Human Rights chairperson Charles Santiago, the Southeast Asian region has failed to act. "The need for effective regional action to combat the crisis is clear, yet our leaders have consistently failed to act," Santiago said. 

Unless Myanmar ended its discrimination, migration across the Bay of Bengal would persist, according to United Nations. It is said that 1.1 million Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar are stateless and about 140,000 were displaced in confrontations with Rakhine Buddhist in 2012.

Meanwhile, Shahidul Haque, the foreign secretary of Bangladesh, said that there was a struggle taking in the "boat people" crisis through the Bay of Bengal, according to The Guardian. Haque called for an international pressure on Burma saying that the Rohingya crisis had been created by Burma, which they will have to look for solution.

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