Bangladesh Leader To Punish Migrants

Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina mentioned on Sunday that those migrants who are seeking to leave the country in an illegal way,including the human traffickers who tried to facilitate their escape, should be punished.

She issued the statement in the midst of the looming crisis in the Southeast Asian nations over the fate of estimated twenty-five thousand of migrants from Bangladesh and Myanmar, who tried to take to the sea on boats trying to settle in the region.

“Side by side with the middlemen, punishment will have to be given against those who are moving from the country in illegal way,” she told senior officials Sunday, Bangladesh’s state media reported. “They are tainting the image of the country along with pushing their life into a danger.”

Myanmar Navy rescued 208 Bangladeshi citizens in its territorial waters. Bangladeshi authorities have been standing by to process repatriation for them,the Global New Light of Myanmar newspaper reported. The rescued Bangladeshis are staying at a refugee camp situated at Madrasha building of Thandwe area of Rakhine state in Myanmar. Dozens of Bangladeshi citizens are still stranded at Myanmar sea.

In the previous weeks, migrants, both the so-called Rohingya are ethnic minority fleeing persecution in Myanmar and economic migrants from Bangladesh who were seeking work have been seen in the sea in Malaysia and Aceh in Indonesia after the risky journey south through the so-called Andaman Sea.

In this regard, the United States Navy requested to the Thai Military the use of one of its airports to provide assistance to the migrants who have been stranded on boats in the Andaman Sea. Thai Air Force Spokesman Air Vice Marshal Montol Sanchukorn confirmed to CNN that the U.S. had requested to keep surveillance aircraft in Phuket when the Anti-submarine Training exercises had been done.

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