Rohingya Vision

Malaysians on Twitter united in helping Rohingya, but divided on how?

Malaysian NGO members hold placards outside the Myanmar embassy in Kuala Lumpur on May 21, 2015. Malaysians in general want to help the migrants but are split on how exactly help should be extended, a poll shows.Image by: AFP

Malaysians on Twitter united in helping Rohingya, but divided on how?
June 08
10:14 2015

KUALA LUMPUR, June 8 — Malaysians are actively discussing the ongoing Rohingya boat crisis on Twitter and keen on helping the migrants who have been adrift on Southeast Asia’s seas over the past few weeks, but are split on how exactly help should be extended, according to an analysis by research firm Politweet.

A sampling of 418 active users of the microblogging site over May 7 to 22 found that an overwhelming 85.89 per cent want the refugees to be rescued, though they suggested solutions that fell into seven different categories.

Of those for saving the Rohingya, 128 or 30.62 per cent believed that Malaysia should rescue the refugees predominantly on humanitarian grounds, followed by religious reasons.

“Many expressed disbelief that Malaysia or other governments would ignore such obvious suffering,” Politweet said in its analysis, which was almost evenly split between those posting in Bahasa Malaysia and English.

The second largest bloc of 79 Twitter users (18.90 per cent) agreed that the Rohingya should be saved, but did not specify who should bear the burden of the deed.

The third most popular solution suggested by 53 users (12.68 per cent) is for Muslim nations such as Malaysia, Indonesia and members of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) to help fellow Muslims in need as part of their religious obligation.

Other solutions proposed were for Myanmar to take responsibility of the rescued migrants (41 users, 9.81 per cent), for ASEAN to rescue them and push for a long-term solution (24 users, 5.74 per cent), for Malaysia to allow temporary shelter (18 users, 4.31 per cent) and for Malaysia to allow the Rohingya permanent residence as they are effectively stateless (16 users, 3.83 per cent).

Those against allowing the Rohingya into Malaysia also raised concerns that they might bring their cultural and ethnic conflicts here, and that allowing this batch of migrants in will only encourage more to attempt the journey.

Malaysia is one of the main destinations for ethnic Rohingya fleeing oppression and violence in Myanmar, with more fleeing their state-sanctioned persecution in search of a better life.

Over 1,000 Bangladeshi migrants and persecuted  Rohingya landed in Langkawi on May 10 and were subsequently sent to the Belantik detention centre in Kedah.

Migrant activists estimate that some 8,000 Bangladeshi and Rohingya remain stranded at sea after people smugglers abandoned ship following a Thai crackdown on human trafficking.

The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees said in a statement on May 8 that some 25,000 Rohingya and Bangladeshis boarded smugglers’ boats between January and March this year, almost double the number over the same period last year.

Malaysia, Thailand and Indonesia have been turning away boats of migrants back out to sea as the International Organisation of Migration reportedly criticised the Southeast Asian nations for playing “maritime ping-pong” with people’s lives.

Note:Changes have been made,malaymail online is not responsible for these.

Source:malaymail online.



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