Southeast Asian governments must provide care, refuge for Rohingya stranded at sea

Responding to reports of at least one boat carrying Rohingya refugees stranded at sea, Amnesty International’s Southeast Asia Researcher Rachel Chhoa-Howard said:


“Seven years after the Andaman Sea crisis, which saw an extensive loss of lives, Rohingya people continue to risk everything in dangerous journeys to escape persecution at home in military-run Myanmar, and the abysmal conditions in Bangladeshi refugee camps.


“International humanitarian law requires the rescue of people at sea when they are in distress, and their delivery to a place of safety. Swift action is needed to protect lives. Further delays to alleviate this suffering or any attempts to send Rohingya back to Myanmar where they face persecution are unconscionable.


“Regional governments must urgently coordinate and cooperate on search and rescue operations. They must attempt to locate any boats in distress and ensure the people on board are allowed to disembark safely and receive proper medical support, food and water.”


Source: Amnesty International