Immigration Department to help distribute aid for Rohingya

In this picture taken on May 14, 2015 migrant people wait for food rations by the government social welfare personnel in Kuala Cangkoi relocation area in Aceh province, where nearly 600 migrants mostly Rohingyas from Myanmar and Bangladesh were relocated by Indonesian authorities after their boat was washed ashore.Malaysia turned away two vessels carrying hundreds of migrants while one boat turned up on May 14 in Thai waters, as critics accused Southeast Asian governments of playing a game of "human ping pong" with the lives of desperate boatpeople.

PETALING JAYA - The Immigration Department will help distribute aid for Rohingya migrants.

Home Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said the ministry would accept assistance provided by non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and individuals and send it to the migrants through the department.

"The aid can be sent to the Belantik immigration depot through the Kedah Immigration Department.

"It can also be sent to the state immigration headquarters in Alor Setar," he said in a statement yesterday.

He called on NGOs and individuals to assist Rohingya migrants stranded off Langkawi.

"They may be migrants who tried to enter the country illegally but their welfare must not be forsaken," he said.

He said he understood that the plight of the Rohingya was a humanitarian issue over which all Malaysians were concerned.

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