Suspected Rohingya refugee boat seen floating off Indonesia

WION Web Team
Jakarta, Indonesia Published: Jun 24, 2020, 07:49 PM(IST)

Suspected Rohingya refugee boat (representative image) Photograph:( Reuters )

Story highlights

Police said the boat, found by fishermen on Sunday, was carrying around 94 foreign nationals, including 79 women and children. It is believed the foreign nationals were ethnic Rohingyas, but investigations were ongoing.

A boat carrying 94 suspected Rohingya refugees was seen floating several miles off the coast of Indonesia's Aceh province on Wednesday after being rescued by fishermen.

Police said the boat, found by fishermen on Sunday, was carrying around 94 foreign nationals, including 79 women and children. It is believed the foreign nationals were ethnic Rohingyas, but investigations were ongoing.

The authorities were planning to bring the boat ashore.

The arrival comes as survivors from another boat crammed with more than 300 Rohingya Muslims told Malaysian authorities that dozens onboard had died and their bodies were thrown in the sea during a four-month voyage.

The boat had landed on the Malaysian island of Langkawi on June 8, with 269 people abroad.

Mainly Muslim Malaysia is home to the second largest number of Rohingya refugees after Bangladesh. They fled their homes in Myanmar following a military crackdown in 2017.

Rohingya have made perilous voyages to Malaysia, Thailand and Indonesia for years. More than one million live in sprawling camps in the south of Bangladesh, with as many as a dozen people sharing one shelter and scarce access to soap and water in some areas.

Read in App