65 Rohingya Muslims found shipwrecked in southern Thailand

Thai navy search a shipwrecked boat at Rawi island in Satun province Southern of Thailand Tuesday, June 11, 2019. Thai officials say they have discovered 65 ethnic Rohingya Muslim refugees who were shipwrecked and stranded in southern Thailand. (Department of National Parks Wildlife and Plant Conservation via AP)
Rohingya sits on a beach at Rawi island in Satun province Southern of Thailand Tuesday, June 11, 2019. Thai officials say they have discovered 65 ethnic Rohingya Muslim refugees who were shipwrecked and stranded in southern Thailand. (Department of National Parks Wildlife and Plant Conservation via AP)

BANGKOK — Thai officials said they discovered 65 ethnic Rohingya Muslim refugees on Tuesday who were shipwrecked and stranded in southern Thailand.

The chief of Tarutao National Marine Park, Kanjanapan Kamhaeng, said the boat carrying the Rohingya was found after several Thai and Myanmar citizens told park officials their ship had broken down. They initially denied they were transporting Rohingya.

Kanjanapan said the boat was found smashed onto a rocky shore and a preliminary check showed it was carrying 65 Rohingya and several Thai and Myanmar citizens who were identified by the Rohingya as in charge of operating the ship.

Kanjanapan said the Thai navy took the group away to be processed by immigration officials.

Navy officer Cmdr. Thanapong Sudrak said authorities will investigate whether the incident involved human trafficking.

Rohingya originate in Rakhine state in Myanmar, where they face extreme persecution by authorities and majority Buddhists, prompting their flight over the years, many on rickety boats that were sometimes pushed back into the open sea by countries such as Thailand.

Attacks by Myanmar's army in 2017 caused more than 700,000 Rohingya to flee to overcrowded refugee camps in neighboring Bangladesh and elsewhere for safety.

People also read these

Over 130,000 flee menacing volcano on Bali...

Sep 29, 2017

More than 130,000 people have fled the region around the Mount Agung volcano on the Indonesian...

Villagers race to save Bali cows from volcanic...

Sep 30, 2017

Bali's gently lowing cows, prized for their hardiness and doe-like temperament, won't become...

Qatar's leader urges end to trade embargo, calls...

Oct 18, 2017

Qatar's emir has urged neighboring states to lift an "unfair" 4-month-old trade embargo and said...

Indonesia hard-line Muslims protest ban on...

Jan 12, 2018

Muslim hard-liners have protested in Indonesia's capital against Facebook's blocking of accounts...

Study: Extremists still flourishing in...

Feb 9, 2018

A new study has found Indonesia's overcrowded prisons are ill-equipped to deal with Islamic...