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Myanmar lifts suspension on workers going to Malaysia

Agencies have already begun sending workers to Malaysia

Myanmar lifts suspension on workers going to Malaysia


By Kyaw Ye Lynn

YANGON, Myanmar  

Myanmar has begun sending workers to Malaysia after a six-month suspension following tensions between the two countries over conflict in Rakhine state, officials said Thursday.

The head of the Myanmar Overseas Employment Agencies Federation (MOEAF) told Anadolu Agency the government informed his group of the lift Tuesday.

“Some agencies have already started sending Myanmar workers to Malaysia,” Win Tun said via telephone, adding that nearly 10,000 workers received appointment letters from Malaysian companies during the suspension period.

Myanmar had been sending about 4,000 workers to Malaysia each month until December when Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak called a military crackdown on Rohingya Muslims in western Rakhine state “genocide” or “ethnic cleansing".

According to Myanmar’s embassy in Kuala Lumpur, there are more than 400,000 Myanmar migrant workers in Malaysia, 100,000 of whom are illegal workers.

Many of those illegal employees work long hours in dangerous conditions with few avenues for working in better conditions or more pay.

Malaysia also hosts more than 54,000 Rohingya and 5,200 ethnic Rakhine refugees registered with the United Nations, and its last census in 2014 showed there are 135,000 Rohingya in the country.

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