ICRC visits Songkhla group of Rohingya
The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) on Friday visited the ethnic Rohingyas who are taking shelter at a police station in Songkhla province.Bjorn Rahm, an ICRC detention delegate met a group of 20 Rohingyas at Hat Yai police station where they are being detained.
Members of the group have been rounded up in the province since January 13.
A source said that ICRC staff met the group in the detention room and asked about their lives in Myanmar before fleeing to Thailand as well as their current living conditions.
The ICRC seemed happy with the Thai authority's care of the Rohingyas including the clean rooms. Basic necessities would be provided to the group by the ICRC pending legal procedures.
According to reports on Thursday, a total of 897 Rohinyas have now emerged and asked for help from the authorities in the southern provinces of Songkhla, Narathiwat, Trang, Pattani and Pangna.
Many more are believed to be hiding in the mountains between Songkhla and Satun.
The Thai government earlier agreed to let the UN High Commissioner for Refugees have access to Rohingya refugees and approved temporary assistance for a group discovered hiding in Songkhla until their status is determined.
The Rohingya from the Rakhine State in western Myanmar lost their rights to citizenship and property in 1982 by legislation that did not include them in that country’s recognised ethnic minority groups.
Last year, the Rohingya were the target of ethnic clashes in Rakhine that left more than 100 dead and 115,000 displaced.