Nearly 800 desperate migrants from Burma and Bangladesh were rescued from a sinking vessel by fishermen off Indonesia’s coast on Friday as the boat people crisis in south-east Asia continued to escalate.

Human Rights Watch condemned Malaysia, Thailand and Indonesia for playing a deadly game of “human ping pong” in refusing to allow more dangerously overladen boats carrying thousands fleeing poverty and persecution to land on their shores.

As the United Nations warned of a “massive humanitarian disaster”, up to 8,000 migrants were believed to be abandoned at sea by smugglers scared off by Thailand’s recent crackdown on human traffickers.

The vessels are packed with ethnic Muslim Rohingya escaping discrimination and sectarian violence in Buddhist-majority Burma and impoverished economic migrants fleeing Bangladesh.

Read the Full Article: Source – The Guardian

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