24 June, 2009: The UNHCR paid a visit to Malaysia’s Belitik camp where more than 40 detained Burmese refugees were interviewed and given UN Registration last week, it emerged.
More than 40 out of about 200 Burmese detainees interviewed got registered as recognised refugees during a five-day visit to the camp by the UN, according to a confirmed source.
“There are five Burmese mothers with babies in the detention camp and one of them is from Tungtuang village, Tonzang Township, Chin State. Most of the registered refugees are of Arakan, Rohingya and Mon people from Burma. Only 6 Chin refugees, who reported to the UN team, got registered during this visit,” added the source.
It is claimed that there are about 20 Chin refugees being detained at the Belitik camp.
Meanwhile, the UNHCR has been criticised for stopping its registration of vulnerable refugees including pregnant women, children and elderly people since early May this year, and for delay in taking action to resume its Mobile Registration.
Amid difficulties, slow registration process by the UNHCR has been seen as having bad impacts on the mental condition of many refugees, resulting in frustration and depression. At least three suicides have been committed within this year in Malaysia.
On 18 June 2009, the UNHCR said it will assist in providing some basic needs for Burmese refugees after making a visit to Kajang prison in Malaysia.
More than an estimated 30,000 Chin refugees and asylum-seekers have been stranded in Malaysia after fleeing brutalities and persecutions constantly inflicted upon them in their native places by Burma’s military dictatorship.
In addition, the SPDC-ignored food crisis caused by bamboo-and-rat-related phenomenon in Chin State prompted the Chin people to flee into neighbouring countries in search of refuge and safety.