Myanmar fishermen return from India after serving prison


Over a hundred Myanmar fishermen have returned home yesterday after serving prison terms in India for illegal fishing and entering foreign waters, according to local sources.

Most of the seamen are from Ayeyarwady Region, one from Yangon Region, five from Rakhine State, nine from Tanintharyi Region and one from Mon State. Some of them claimed they accidentally entered Indian waters due to unexpected storms and engine failures while others were arrested for illegal fishing.

“I had served two years and six months in prison terms there for illegal fishing. I’m still not sure what to do for my living here. But I will never do that fishing job again,” said Myint Zaw, a seaman from Rakhine.

Myanmar Airways International transported them back to home free of charge with cooperative support from the Ministry of Social Welfare and Myanmar Fisheries Federation.

“The Indian embassy informed us about them who have served the prison terms there to call them back. Immigration Department’s officials went there to check whether they are Myanmar nationals or not. When they confirmed, we arranged their return back home,” said Aung Kyaw Win, deputy director from Ministry of Social Welfare and Resettlement.

Reports say there are still more than 800 Myanmar seamen still in India’s prisons for illegal fishing. Official figures show more than 3000 seamen had returned from India after serving prison terms from 2000 to 2011.


He said witnesses told police the clash started after a Muslim Rohingya confronted a Buddhist fisherman about sectarian violence in their homeland. Insults were traded, and people began fighting with rocks and knives.

Indonesian police look at some of the bodies of Myanmar Buddhists at the police hospital morgue in Medan, North Sumatra province, on April 5, 2013 after a group of Myanmar Muslims beat them to death at an Indonesian detention centre after they heard about communal violence in their homeland. The Rohingya Muslims launched the attack at the immigration centre on Sumatra island using weapons fashioned from smashed up beds and broom handles after seeing pictures of religious violence in Myanmar last month that left dozens dead. (STR/AFP/Getty Images)


Indonesia Myanmar Violence

MEDAN, Indonesia (AP) — Buddhist and Muslim asylum seekers from Burma brawled with rocks and knives Friday at an immigration detention center in Indonesia, leaving eight combatants dead and another 15 injured, police said.

The melee broke out at the center in North Sumatra province, where more than 100 Rohingya migrants — most intercepted off Indonesia’s coast in rickety boats — and 11 illegal fishermen from Burma were being held together, said local police chief Endro Kiswanto.

He said witnesses told police the clash started after a Muslim Rohingya confronted a Buddhist fisherman about sectarian violence in their homeland. Insults were traded, and people began fighting with rocks and knives.

Eight Buddhists were killed, and 15 Rohingya were injured. Three other Buddhists escaped unharmed, Kiswanto said.

All of the victims were rushed to a hospital in the provincial capital, Medan, about 23 kilometers (14 miles) south of Belawan.

“We are still investigating the incident, including how they got knives,” he said. “We will expedite their repatriation.”



အင္ဒိုနီးရွားရွိ immigration Detention Centre ျဖစ္စဥ္ႏွင့္စပ္လ်ဥ္း၍

ဂ်ာကာတာရွိ ျမန္မာသံရုံးက အင္ဒိုနီးရွားအစိုးရ တာဝန္ရွိသူမ်ားထံ-

(၁) ျဖစ္စဥ္အမွန္ကို မွန္မွန္ကန္ကန္ တရားမွ်တစြာ စုံစမ္းေဖာ္ထုတ္ေပးရန္၊

(ဓါး သို႕မဟုတ္ ေသေၾကေစေသာ ကိရိယာမ်ား Detention Centre အတြင္း ေရာက္ရွိေနရျခင္း အေၾကာင္းရင္း၊ Detention Centre ရွိ လုံျခဳံေရးတပ္ဖြဲ႕ဝင္မ်ား၏ ေစာင့္ၾကပ္ထိန္းသိမ္းမႈအေျခအေန)

(၂) စုံစမ္းေဖာ္ထုတ္ခ်က္အရ အျပစ္ရွိသူမ်ား၊ ျပစ္မႈက်ဴးလြန္သူမ်ားကို ဥပေဒႏွင့္အညီ ထိထိေရာက္ေရာက္ အျပစ္ေပး အေရးယူရန္၊

(၃) အင္ဒိုနီးရွားေရာက္ ျမန္မာႏုိင္ငံသားမ်ား၏ လုံျခဳံေရးကို အေလးထား

ေတာင္းဆိုသြားမည္ေၾကာင္း သိရွိရပါသည္။

UNHCR saddened by loss of life in Indonesia detention centre incident

Briefing Notes, 5 April 2013

This is a summary of what was said by UNHCR spokesperson Adrian Edwards – to whom quoted text may be attributed – at the press briefing, on 5 April 2013, at the Palais des Nations in Geneva.

The UN refugee agency is saddened by reports of fatalities and injuries following a disturbance early this morning at a detention centre in Medan, in Indonesia’s Northern Sumatra.

According to local authorities, eight people have died and 15 are injured after fighting broke out between asylum seekers and others from Myanmar in the detention centre. UNHCR is calling for calm among the groups and urging the Indonesian authorities to take action to prevent further violence, including moving individuals into community housing as soon as possible.

For more information on this topic, please contact:

  • In Bangkok, Vivian Tan on mobile: +66 818 270 280
  • In Geneva, Babar Baloch on mobile: +41 79 557 9106


Hundreds of Rohingya Muslims rallied at the representative office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in Medan, North Sumatra, on Thursday, 

The refugees from Myanmar asked the UNHCR to send them from their accommodations in Indonesia to other nations. 

A spokesman for the asylum seekers, Sayed Husein, said that the Rohingya had been living in a shelter in the North Sumatran capital for four years and had each received a monthly stipend of Rp 1.25 million (US$138) from the UNHCR for living expenses.

“Everything has been adequate during our stay here, but we actually wish to seek for a better future,” Sayed said.