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To stop human trafficking by sea routes

A corpse floats in river, with the
burnt down Muslim Rohingya quarter No.4 in the distance, in Pauk Taw
township, on October 27, 2012 in Pauk Taw, Myanmar.  Getty
Images/Getty Images AsiaPac)


Recently,
according to the reports of accidents and deaths of boat- people who
were trying to go to Malaysia by sea. The accidents appear to be
heartbreaking consequences for Rohingyas whose family members tried
to choose the perilous routes by sea. Thousands of Rohingya people
had been sent to Malaysia through these routes operated by some human
trafficker groups.



These human trafficker groups –
who station in Teknaf, Cox’s Bazar, Sharpor Dip, Chittagong and
other border areas and Maungdaw and Buthidaung from Arakan- 
only see for their individual profits ignoring the innocent poor
people. Sometimes, the boat-people were forced to land on the sea
beach after driving for four or five days in the sea saying that the
boat was arriving at Thailand or Malaysia. But the boat was landing
at the seashore of Bangladesh and then the driver and leaders left
the scene immediately leaving the boat people. These kinds of
accident were also happened.


The human trafficker groups also
used old and small boat which was cheap price, carrying the
boat-people, when the boat reached far from the coast of Bangladesh,
the driver or the leader of the boat deliberately sank the boat in
the sea and they left to the coast by swimming with their safety
rubber rings.

These human trafficker groups work
dividing into three groups. The first group organizes poor and
unemployed people. The second group collects money promising these
people jobs in Malaysia and the third group approaches to the local
authorities to get understanding by giving money. In this way, the
voyagers were cheated, sometimes.

These human trafficker groups thus
rob the innocent people giving hope that they will take them to
Malaysia.

Typically young males between 16
and 40 years of age take to the boats leaving their families. 
The local people estimate that between 50 and 100 people leave by
boat per week, this year.

These victims not only lose money
but also die as the boats carrying them capsize almost regularly.

A boat-people who was recently
saved from a sinking boat said that he was going to Malaysia but on
the way the boat suddenly sank and he floated for hours before a
fishing boat picked him up.

In similar way, another survivor
reported that the boat was crowded with people and the boat agent
collected Taka 22,000 to 25,000 per each for the journey to Malaysia
before getting up into the boat.

Rohingyas, who face persecution in
Burma, often make the perilous journey by sea to Thailand and
Malaysia in search of better opportunities. But ultimately they are
deprived of their hopes.

The Bangladesh authorities must act
immediately to bring those human trafficker groups to justice.

The Burmese government should take
a policy to provide better employment opportunities to these deprived
Rohingya people who are willing to risk their lives to have a better
job. To implement this policy, it is needed for international
community to give pressure to the Burmese government. The Burmese
government is also needed to lift up movement restriction order
against the Rohingya community and to give them to access to do
anything for their livelihood.