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Food flotilla to Myanmar to set sail in February

Tuesday, 17 January 2017

PETALING JAYA: The Food Flotilla destined for Myanmar to help the Rohingyas will depart on 3 February, said the organisers.

The flotilla was supposed to have set sail from Port Klang on 10 January but was delayed after the Myanmar government failed to give approval for it.  

The mission is organised by the Malaysian Consultative Council of Islam Organisations (Mapim), Kelab Putra 1Malaysia and a coalition of NGOs from the region.

Mapim president Mohd Azmi Abdul Hamid said the organisers postponed the mission as they did not want to create a conflict with Myanmar.

“They claimed that we are going in without their acknowledgement. We are an NGO and we don’t want to have a conflict with another country and create a diplomatic issue. So we gave them more time,” he said on Tuesday.

He said organisers resubmitted an application for a permit to enter Myanmar waters, but have yet to receive a reply. However, the flotilla will set sail in February regardless of Myanmar’s decision.

Mohd Azmi said that if the mission is not allowed into Myanmar, the flotilla will then go to the Bangladeshi town of Teknaf that borders Myanmar, where many of the Rohingya live.

The flotilla is expected to deliver more than 1,000 tonnes of rice, medical aid and other essential supplies to help the refugees.

The United Nations has reported that about 65,000 Rogingyas have fled to Bangladesh since Oct. 9.

Myanmar troops poured into the western state of Rakhine in response to coordinated attacks on three border posts on Oct 9 that killed nine police officers.

Considered to be stateless and often subjected to arbitrary violence and forced labour in Myanmar, the Rohingyas are considered by the United Nations as one of the most persecuted minorities in the world.

For more information about the flotilla, log on to www.foodflotilla.com

Source by: Internet

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