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Rohingyas Flee Strife on Illegal Ferries

26 July 2012

Rohingya Muslim families are fleeing sectarian violence in western Burma’s Arakan State by booking seats on illegal ferries, reports Pakistan-based The News. In a desperate attempt to sneak into Thailand and then cross over to Malaysia to seek asylum, many of the stateless community are using boats operated by Bangladesh-based people smugglers. While the route has been used for decades by economic migrants sending money home, now entire families are trying to relocate permanently. “With my brothers and my wives and our five children, we are set to take the boat for Thailand, with the hope that finally we will get shelter in Malaysia,” a refugee was quoted by the newspaper.