World / Asia-Pacific

Trafficked Myanmar fishermen brought back from Indonesia

(Xinhua) Updated: 2015-05-19 12:39

YANGON -- A second group of 128 Myanmar fishery workers, who were trafficked to Indonesia and worked as slave labors, have been brought back to Yangon at the weekend, official media reported Tuesday.

The 128 Myanmar citizens out of 535 were repatriated to the former capital under the arrangement of the government.

The first group of 125 Myanmar workers had returned to their homeland last Thursday and the remaining ones will be taken back to Myanmar on coming Friday, the report added.

Meanwhile, the Myanmar government pledged cooperation with regional and international counterparts to tackle the ongoing boat people crisis, which presidential spokesman U Ye Htut said Monday is a consequence of human trafficking of people from Rakhine state and Bangladesh to Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia.

The government will scrutinize the boat people and bring back those who can show evidence of citizenship, he told a meeting between ministers and foreign diplomats in Yangon.

The government does not assume the boat people as refugees fleeing the conflict in Rakhine state which shares a border with Bangladesh, he said.

According to official figures, Myanmar has begun to repatriate more than 500 trafficked victims who were forced into fishing boats in Indonesia after they were found to be Myanmar citizens.

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