Rohingyas flock to UNHCR in Kuala Lumpur following Malaysia government pledge
Since the Malaysian government announced last week that it would give temporary stay cards to Rohingya refugees from Myanmar to remain in the country until it was safe to return, UNHCR in Kuala Lumpur has been overwhelmed by hundreds of Rohingyas anxious to regularise their situation.
On Tuesday, a crowd of some 200-300 Rohingyas gathered in the UNHCR compound, keen to hear news of when they would be receiving their cards.
However, UNHCR is still waiting for further details from the government about the implementation of the new scheme, so we can pass on the news to the refugees, and assist in whatever way we can. The Rohingyas reacted with joy to the announcement that they would be getting cards and are now anxious to obtain them before an expected crackdown on illegal migrants in the coming months.
The Malaysian government has said that refugees and people of concern to UNHCR would not be affected by the crackdown. But many refugees, who have previously been subject to arrest and detention, say they will only feel secure if they have the cards in their hands.
There are approximately 10,000 Rohingyas living in Malaysia, mainly on the outskirts of Kuala Lumpur where they find work on construction sites.