Date
18 October 2017
Thai authorities have discovered a grave containing the bodies of about 30 migrants in a jungle camp believed to have been used by people-smugglers. Photo: WSJ
Thai authorities have discovered a grave containing the bodies of about 30 migrants in a jungle camp believed to have been used by people-smugglers. Photo: WSJ

Thailand under scrutiny after migrant mass grave found

Thailand’s human trafficking problem has come under media glare again following the discovery of a mass grave of suspected migrants from Myanmar and Bangladesh.

Authorities discovered on Friday a grave containing about 30 bodies in southern Thailand.

The grave, near the border with Malaysia, was found after a tip-off that human-traffickers were holding people at a jungle camp while waiting for payments from relatives who had already made it to Malaysia, the Wall Street Journal reported.

The cause of deaths has yet to be determined, but police suspect disease or starvation, the report said.

Traffickers ferrying people from Myanmar, especially ethnic Rohingya Muslims, use Thailand as a transit point before smuggling people across the border into Malaysia.

Migrants make a perilous journey across the ocean from Myanmar, where Rohingyas are denied citizenship and often live in refugee camps.

Some who don’t reach their final destination are a kept, usually against their will, for months in jungle camps as their relatives scramble to secure ransom payments, the Journal noted. 

– Contact us at [email protected]

RA/RC

EJI Weekly Newsletter

Please click here to unsubscribe