Malaysian ship carrying aid for Rohingya arrives in Bangladesh
Iran Press TV
Tue Feb 14, 2017 7:5PM
A Malaysian ship has arrived in Bangladesh, carrying humanitarian aid for thousands of Rohingya Muslims who have escaped persecution in neighboring Myanmar.
The ship, which transported about 1,500 tonnes of food, clothing and medical items docked in Chittagong port in southeastern Bangladesh on Tuesday.
Senior Bangladeshi officials and Malaysian diplomats gathered in the port's container terminal in a brief handover ceremony.
The shipment was also received by local officials of the Red Crescent and the International Organization of Migration in the port city.
Abdul Aziz Mohd Abdur Rahim, a representative of Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak and a member of parliament who traveled with the ship, handed over the aid cargo. He called for a "long-standing solution" to the Rohingya crisis.
"Thirty million Malaysians are with you (Rohingya)," media outlets quoted Rahim as saying.
Bangladesh also allowed dozens of Malaysian volunteers out of 183 people who came with the aid ship.
Malaysian volunteer Azmi, who uses one name, said, "We hope our humanitarian efforts will pave the way to resolve the Rohingya issue and awaken the international community."
Trucks will transport aid cargo for distribution to the Rohingya refugees in the southern district of Cox's Bazar, which is located about 200 kilometers south of Chittagong.
Some 232,000 Rohingya refugees have already sought refuge in Bangladesh after Myanmar's military forced more than 65,000 of them to flee.
On February 9, another Malaysian aid ship arrived at Myanmar's port in Yangon.
The Rohingya are already facing abuse, including torture, murder, and rape, in Myanmar, with the government laying a siege to Rakhine state, where they are concentrated.
Myanmar's military began a harsh crackdown against the Rohingya in Rakhine after an attack by unidentified elements on the country's border guards on October 9 last year left nine police officers dead. The government blamed the attack on the Rohingya.
Persecution of Rohingya Muslims in the Buddhist-majority Myanmar has been going on for years.
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