UNHCR’s Mobile Registration Welcomed In Malaysia
24 January 2010: A new wave of refugee registration to be conducted in the jungle camps by UNHCR in Malaysia has been hailed by Chin communities amid a series of continued arrests and raids by Malaysian RELA Corps and Police.
The programme, known as Mobile Registration, is set to provide documentation to hundreds of asylum seekers who have been living in makeshift huts in the jungle, afraid to venture out to seek UNHCR assistance for fear of being arrested and detained.
According to a UNHCR’s announcement released last month, the UN refugee agency has been stepping up efforts to protect 28,000 refugees and asylum seekers in the country ahead of an expected crackdown on illegal migrants early this year.
In its recent newsletters, Alliance of Chin Refugees (ACR) said of having been informed by the UNHCR’s official after the meeting held on 13 January 2011 that UNHCR will be carrying out the Mobile Registration between 3 February and 5 March 2010.
Initiated in 2009, the Mobile Registration focuses on registering refugees in collaboration with the community leaders.
More than 8,000 Chin refugees belonging to various Chin tribes from Burma’s Chin State are scheduled to be registered between 3 February and 24 March 2010, according to the newsletter released today by ACR, a body comprising a total of 17 Chin community-based organisations.
ACR has also made an announcement today in its newsletter, saying the registration will take place only in a church, and urging each of its members to contact their respective community leader for detailed information as well as telling of the need for Christian conduct and morality during the registration processes.
It is estimated that about 40,000 Chin refugees and asylum seekers have stranded in Malaysia in search of safety and security after fleeing their country, Burma where they have for decades suffered from the brutalities inflicted by the military regime.
Van Biak Thang