Court sets aside stay to deport 114 Myanmar refugees

BERNAMA
BERNAMA
13 Dec 2022 09:59pm
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KUALA LUMPUR - The High Court today set aside an interim stay on the Malaysian government from repatriating 114 Myanmar refugees to their country of origin.

Judge Datuk Ahmad Kamal Md Shahid made the ruling after allowing the application of the Malaysian government, the Immigration director-general and the Minister of Home Affairs as respondents to set aside the prohibition order that the court had previously made.

Senior Federal Counsel Ahmad Hanir Hambaly who represented all respondents and lawyer Lim Wei Jeit who represented two non-governmental organisations (NGOs), Asylum Access Berhad and Aimal Sdn Bhd as applicants when contacted confirmed the matter.

The three respondents filed the application on May 12 on the grounds that the Myanmar detainees had repeatedly appealed and expressed their wishes to immigration officers on duty at the Immigration detention depots to be allowed to return to their country.

The interim stay was previously issued by Judge Datuk Seri Mariana Yahya (now Court of Appeal Judge) on Feb 24 2021, which prohibits the Malaysian government from deporting the Myanmar immigrants to their country of origin until March 9, 2021.

On March 9, the NGOs obtained an order from the court to initiate a judicial review to challenge the repatriation of 1,200 Myanmar refugees to their country of origin.

The two NGOs filed a judicial review application on Feb 22, 2021, to obtain a court order to overturn the government's decision to repatriate all refugees including children detained in immigration detention centres to Myanmar by ship.

In the application, the NGOs claimed that if all the refugees were sent back to Myanmar, their lives would be threatened and would be in danger.

In a media statement on Feb 23 2021, Immigration director-general Datuk Khairul Dzaimee Daud said a total of 1,086 illegal immigrants from Myanmar who were detained at Immigration depots across the country since last year were sent home via Royal Malaysian Navy (RMN) base in Lumut.
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The repatriation programme was carried out in collaboration with the Malaysian Armed Forces, especially RMN, the National Task Force and the Myanmar Embassy.