For years, Myanmar’s oppressed Rohingya have been trying to cross the sea into countries such as Malaysia, Thailand and Indonesia. As the sea was calm between April and November, they risked their lives to reach the sea by boat.
The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) said on Monday that a boat carrying Rohingyas had been spotted in the waters of Biruen in Aceh on Sunday. Efforts to rescue the refugees continue.
There were about 70 refugees in the boat. Badruddin Jusuf, a leader of the local fishing community, said there were 120 Rohingya on board. They have been provided with food.
Amnesty International has called on local authorities to rescue the trapped Rohingya.
Usman Hamid, the agency’s Indonesian executive director, said regional countries needed to take joint responsibility for the search and rescue so that refugees could avoid dangerous situations at sea.