Concerns Mounting Over Safety of Chin Refugees in Malaysia
23 December, 2009: Safety concerns are growing for Chin refugees in Malaysia following a series of continuous raids and arrests by Malaysian authorities and increasing fatal accidents.
About 150 refugees from Burma are reported to have been arrested in a raid by Malaysian RELA Corps in Kuala Lumpur last Saturday.
A Chin refugee Ca Cung, 39, yesterday died at HUKM hospital after being hit by car on 21 December and another refugee Za Hnin, 37, hit by car last Sunday remains in serious condition at hospital.
“Student activist Salai John Ceu Cung Nung and Pu Tluang Hei of ACR (Alliance of Chin Refugee) also died after being hit by car earlier this year and the Malaysian police, though informed, did nothing in regards to the accidents,” said Salai Biak Lian Sang, who recently got resettled in the USA from Malaysia.
Recently, the needs for introducing Malaysian road and traffic rules to the Chin refugees have been raised in order to help themselves protect and prevent from this kind of road accidents.
Detained refugee A Thang, a father of four, collapsed unconscious at Langkap Immigration Camp last Thursday due to depression and earlier this month, Ngo Za Pau, 45, died at KLIA Immigration Camp after serious illnees which had been reportedly ignored by the camp authorities.
Last October, an estimated 550 refugees from Burma including 250 Chins were detained in Lenggeng Immigration Camp where detainees were reportedly asked a certain amount of money by the camp authorities to get a priority to meet with the UNHCR team.
One of the Chin community leaders in Malaysia said: “In Malaysia, anything can happen at any time. We are not sure if we can actually even celebrate Christmas.”
For years, Malaysian police and RELA Corps have been flooded with allegations of corruption and brutality over dealing with refugees stranded in Malaysia.
There are an estimated 40,000 Chin refugees and asylum seekers currently stranded in Malaysia after fleeing systematic repression, persecutions and brutalities from military-ruled Burma.