Date of this Version
In recent years, Malaysian print and television media, and nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), as well as international NGOs and media, have reported the alleged mistreatment of Burmese migrants in Malaysia, along the Malaysia-Thailand border, and in southern Thailand. While the allegations which led to the preparation of this report are not new, the report’s content is based on first person accounts of extortion and trafficking in Malaysia and along the Malaysia- Thailand border. Committee information comes from experiences of Burmese refugees resettled in the United States and other countries. Malaysian Government officials continually deny such allegations. As reported recently in the Malaysia Star, ‘‘Home Minister Datuk Seri Syed Hamid Albar also denied claims that thousands of illegal foreigners held at detention centres were ‘‘being sold off’’ to human trafficking syndicates. ‘I take offence with the allegation because neither the Malaysian Government nor its officials make money by selling people.’ ’’ However, on April 1, 2009, Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Musa Hassan stated that an investigation has been launched. This is the first of three reports.