Boat carrying 111 Rohingya refugees lands in Indonesia’s Aceh

NEWS DESK

A boat carrying 111 Rohingya refugees, including women and children, landed on the shores of Indonesia’s northernmost province of Aceh on Tuesday, authorities said, the latest among an annual exodus from northwest Myanmar, Reuters reports.

The Rohingya, a persecuted Muslim minority, have for years sailed to countries such as Malaysia, Thailand and Indonesia between November and April when the seas are calmer.

Hundreds have reached Aceh in recent years, many having been at sea for months.

In Myanmar, the Rohingya are widely considered to be illegal immigrants from Bangladesh, despite being born in Myanmar.

Hamdani, a spokesperson for the North Aceh government, who like many Indonesians uses one name only, said all 111 aboard the boat, which include 27 women and 18 children, were in good health.

“They are on land already. They have been treated well,” he said, adding they were staying in a nearby village.

Authorities will meet later on Tuesday to decide what to do with the group, he said.

More than 730,000 Rohingya Muslims fled Myanmar in 2017 after a military crackdown that witnesses said included mass killings and rape. Rights groups have documented killings of civilians and burning of villages.

Myanmar authorities have said they were battling an insurgency and deny carrying out systematic atrocities.

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