Thailand sets up naval task force to help Rohingya migrants

Thailand has set up a task force on a floating naval base equipped with medical facilities to help Rohingya Muslim migrants found adrift in Thai waters, Prime Minister Gen Prayut Chan-Ocha said today.

Bangkok: Thailand has set up a task force on a floating naval base equipped with medical facilities to help Rohingya Muslim migrants found adrift in Thai waters, Prime Minister Gen Prayut Chan-Ocha said today.

"If the Rohingya people are found, then they will be brought to the floating naval base and given medical treatment before they are sent to the temporary shelters in Indonesia and Malaysia, which we will facilitate, but it has to be under the Thai law," the Prime Minister told reporters.

The Premier said he had ordered the Thai Air Force to also conduct an aerial patrol to find the migrants.

Thailand is hosting a regional meeting on May 29 on migrant crisis that has seen more than 3,500 Bangladeshi economic migrants and miniority Rohingya Muslims from Myanmar fleeing to Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia.

The three countries, as well as Myanmar and Bangladesh, have come under international pressure to provide immediate humanitarian relief to the migrants.

Meanwhile, Thai police chief Gen Somyot Pumpunmuang said that 139 graves found at abandoned camps in Malaysia near the Thai border could possibly be linked to the human trafficking gangs in Thailand.

Thai police is seeking information from Malaysian counterpart on the details of the discovery, he said.

Malaysian authorities today said they have discovered 139 graves spread over 28 abandoned human trafficking camps in the country's northern hilly region sharing border with Thailand where Rohingya Muslims fleeing Myanmar were believed to have been held.

Somyot said the Thai police will coordinate with its Malaysian counterparts to track the entire human trafficking network in the region with the interrogation of captured human trafficking suspects to determine their involvement with the graves in Malaysia.

Somyot said that the unmarked graves discovered in both countries could be considered as international crime.

Therefore, all involved nations should cooperate to solve this problem. 

 

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