At least 12 dead and several missing after boat carrying Rohingya refugees sinks

At least 12 dead and several missing after boat carrying Rohingya refugees sinks

Several refugees are now missing (Stock image)

Monday, October 9, 2017

A boat carrying many Rohingya refugees capsized on Sunday night (October 8), leaving at least 12 dead and several others missing.

Many of the people on the boat were children who were travelling away from Myanmar to escape violence, according to France 24.

Roughly 100 people were travelling on the vessel, border officials and the coast guard said, and it sank at around 10pm local time in the Naf river which runs between Myanmar and Bangladesh.

Officials worked through the night and discovered 12 bodies. Ten of these were children and the other two were a man and an elderly woman, a Border Guard Bangladesh member told AFP.

Alauddin Nayan, the area coast guard commander, said he thinks around 40 of the 100 on board were adults whilst others were children.

Thirteen Rohingya have now been picked up by border rescue boats. It is thought many others may have been able to swim to the coast of Rakhine.

Local media reported that one of the survivors claimed the boat sank due to the bad weather and strong waves.

Since late August thousands of Rohingya Muslims have fled Myanmar, travelling to Bangladesh to escape what has been dubbed ethnic cleansing in the country by the United Nations.

So far it is thought about 150 people have drowned whilst travelling in small boats not fit for rough journeys. It is thought that more than 60 refugees died just last week after another boat capsized.