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Malaysia challenges court order, deporting nearly 1,200 Myanmar nationalsExBulletin




Myanmar ship UMS Moattama, which was sent to return Myanmar migrants from Malaysia, is seen anchored on a quay outside Kuala Lumpur on Monday.

Mohd Rasfan / AFP through Getty Images

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Mohd Rasfan / AFP through Getty Images

Myanmar ship UMS Moattama, which was sent to return Myanmar migrants from Malaysia, is seen anchored on a quay outside Kuala Lumpur on Monday.

Mohd Rasfan / AFP through Getty Images

Malaysia has returned nearly 1,200 migrants from Myanmar in defiance of a court order and calls by human rights groups to stop the process.

Myanmar nationals boarded buses from across the country and were loaded on three naval ships sent to pull them out of Myanmar’s ruling junta, which seized power in a coup earlier this month.

The move followed a stance issued by the Kuala Lumpur High Court setting the stand for the deportation of 1,086 pending refugees pending a hearing on Wednesday.

Malaysia claims the deportees were detained for immigration violations.

The director general of the country’s Immigration Department says no Rohingyas or asylum seekers were part of the group sent back to Myanmar.

“All those who returned had agreed to return voluntarily without being forced by either party,” Khairul Dzaimee Daud said in a statement, without explaining the government’s reasoning for challenging the Supreme Court order.

Amnesty International and another rights group, Asylum Access, say the returned migrants include some of the ethnic groups that have suffered persecution in Myanmar in the past. They also said that about a dozen children with at least one parent in Malaysia are among the deportees.

Amnesty and Asylum, “shocked by authorities’ disregard for a court order to stop deportation”, Lim Wei Jiet, a lawyer for the two rights groups, i tha The Australian.

“The rush in which this whole operation is being carried out, despite the clear order of the judiciary to do otherwise, raises more questions about the motives of the parties involved,” Lim said, adding that the evictions risked legitimizing the Myanmar junta and exposed the country’s ethnic minorities to further persecution by the military.

Following the court ruling, but before the news of the evictions became known, Amnesty Malaysia director Katrina Maliamauv called on Malaysia to “reconsider its plans to send this vulnerable group back to Myanmar, where its violations “Human rights are currently very dangerous.”

She has accused the country of detaining refugees in “terrible conditions”.

“But the options for people and their families can not be between indefinite detention or putting their lives at risk by turning into a potentially dangerous situation,” Maliamauv said in a previous post. declaration

Although not a signatory of 1951 Refugee Convention, predominantly Muslim Malaysia has vowed not to deport Rohingya or refugees registered with the UN High Commissioner for Refugees. It has allowed about 180,000 United Nations refugees and asylum seekers, including about 100,000 Rohingya and members of Myanmar’s other ethnic groups, to stay on humanitarian grounds, according to the Associated Press.

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