Malaysian PM: If international groups help we will be very happy

Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi

Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi

source from


Q: Related to human rights, more specifically recently Thailand has been in the spotlight regarding its handling of Rohingya issue. Prime Minister Abhisit has proposed that a regional meeting be held, along the lines of the Bali Protocol. Malaysia and Indonesia have similar problems. Are you supportive of such a process? Where do you see the stumbling block of this regional meeting occurring?

Abdullah: We have a similar problem too.

I will put it this way. When the Rohingya come to Malaysia, most of them come from Thailand. We feel that they are being pushed onto us instead of Thailand accommodating them somehow. They come to us and when they come to us of course we know they come from Myanmar. When we ask Myanmar, they ask: “Are you sure they are our people? What evidence have you got?”

You know when the Rohingya come, they destroy their documents. There has to be a lot of understanding on how to control this at the border. We have to be very firm in dealing with this situation. If we are not, then all of us will have a problem. From Thailand they come to us, from us they go to Indonesia.

We don’t want to be unkind but the problem has been about the people who come without permits. If they come as workers with permits which have been approved then we can regulate them. But the problem is those Rohingya who just turn up. So what do we do with them?

Q: Of course the issue is that Myanmar does not recognise these people. And also Myanmar needs to participate in such a meeting, otherwise this problem cannot be resolved or discussed. How then do you see the role of international organisations in this process? They are at times critical of how these types of refugees are treated.

Abdullah: Well they are very concerned and at times they are critical of actions taken by governments. But if we cannot be firm we cannot deal with this problem. We have to be firm at all borders. We have to turn them back. If they (international groups) help we will be very happy.

Post a comment or leave a trackback: Trackback URL.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: