Anti-Rohingya protests greet aid ship inYangon

  • A Malaysian NGO's aid ship carrying food and emergency supplies for Rohingya Muslims arrives at the port in Yangon on February 9 
    Photo- REUTERS

A small group of protesters greeted a ship from Malaysia when it docked in Myanmar on Thursday carrying aid bound for the troubled state of Rakhine, where many members of the stateless Rohingya Muslim minority live.

The ship docked on the outskirts of the commercial hub, Yangon, where it was due to unload 500 tonnes of food and emergency supplies, with the rest of its 2,200 tonne cargo bound for southeast Bangladesh.

The aid shipment from mostly Muslim Malaysia has stirred opposition in Buddhist-majority Myanmar, where many see the Rohingya as illegal immigrants from Bangladesh.

Malaysia has been an outspoken critic of Myanmar over the crisis in Rakhine state.

UN officials working with refugees in Bangladesh have told Reuters the death toll in the Myanmar security sweep could be more than 1,000.

Refugees have given journalists, human rights groups and UN investigators detailed accounts of troops firing on civilians, burning villages, beatings, detention and rape.

The Myanmar government, led by Nobel Peace Prize winner Aung San Suu Kyi, has rejected the reports of abuse, saying many were fabricated. It insists the strife is an internal matter.

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