|Myanmar rescues 208 Bangladeshis from fishing trawlers
(3 mins ago)
Myanmar says its navy has rescued 208 migrants aboard two fishing trawlers off the western coast.
According to the director of the president's office, Zaw Htay, the migrants are Bangladeshi men.
(Pictured, Rohingya women at a temporary shelter in Lhoksukon, Aceh province, Indonesia yesterday).
They were found off the coast of Rakhine state, where most of the Rohingya minority Muslims have been fleeing persecution in the majority-Buddhist nation and thousands became stranded in the Andaman Sea.
Authorities in Myanmar do not recognize the Rohingya, refer to them as Bengalis and consider them to be illegal immigrants from Bangladesh.
About half of the more than 3,000 migrants who landed on the shores of Indonesia and Malaysia are Rohingya from Myanmar and the other half from Bangladesh proper. They share the same language and religion.
Htaw says the Myanmar navy will provide humanitarian assistance, conduct verification and return them to where they came from.—AP