Bangladesh Navy arrests 24 boat-people in Bay of Bengal

Teknaf, Bangladesh: Bangladesh Navy personnel arrested 24 boat-people, near the Saint Martin’s Island in the Bay of Bengal on April 7, said Lt Abdullah-al-Mamun, commander of Coast Guard, Teknaf Station.“The boat-people were arrested when they were trying to leave for Malaysia by sea-route.”

On being tipped off, a team of Bangladesh Navy conducted a drive near the said island at about 11:30 am and seized an engine boat with 24 people on board, official said.

The arrested boat-people have been identified as— Rafique, Rashid, Ismail, Sohel, Jamal, Shamsu, Musa, Shahid, Ayub, Abdur Rahman, Sirajul Islam, Rafique, Hamid, Jabed, Hashim, Nur Alam, Ziaur, Ibrahim, Din Mohammad, Ansarul, Mozammel, Forkan, Tayob and Siddique. Their ages are between 20 and 40.

Among the arrestees, Rafique, Sirajul Islam and Rashid were the Banglsdeshi boatmen of Shahpuri Dip under the Teknaf upazila of the Cox’s Bazar district and others are Rohingyas, according to official.

“The detainees are being interrogated to know who are the people behind them, sending to Malaysia illegally,” said Lt Abdullah-al-Mamun.

Later on, all the arrestees were handed over to Bangladesh Coast Guard (East Zone), according to an aid of official.

Rohingya people left for Malaysia for seeking better opportunity because of no security of lives in Arakan State, Burma and Bangladesh. They are being persecuted extremely by the quasi-government of Burma. So, Rohingya people come to Bangladesh from Burma for seeking shelter as a neighboring Muslim country, but they are facing same problems like Burma in Bangladesh, according to different sources from border.

Since violence in Arakan in June 2012, thousands of Rohingya people left for Malaysia from Burma and Bangladesh by sea-route. Many were arrested and detained in Thailand, Indonesia, India and Malasia   and many Rohingys had already died on their journey to Malaysia.

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