Friday, February 17, 2012


Dear Katrina,

Thank you sharing with us the updated situation and collective action in Malaysia.
In solidarity.
Veerawit Tianchainan/Founder and Executive Director /Thai Committee for Refugees Foundation (TCR)
Chair, Southeast Asia Working Group, Asia-Pacific Refugees Rights Network

The mass arrests & detention of migrants, refugees and stateless persons in
Malaysia has begun.

4 million Malaysians have been mobilized to seek out, arrest, detain and
deport any migrant found to be undocumented in Malaysia. Out of this, 2.8
million are ordinary citizens with no proper training (RELA Volunteer
Corp), while the remaining 1 million are Immigration officers, police, the
military and other enforcement agencies.

*Key concerns: *

   - Detention and deportation of refugees, stateless persons, trafficked
   victims & other vulnerable populations including children
   - Use of violence  by enforcement officers during raids, arrests &
   - Violation of rights during arrests & detention : i.e. no access to
   lawyers, phone call to family, deprivation of basic needs, etc

* In order to monitor and respond to this crackdown, several hotline
numbers have been set up:*

   - Tenaganita (temporary hotline) :

·         +6-012-339 5350

·         +6-012-335 0512

   - MSRI (hotline for refugees & asylum seekers): *+6-012-6628483*
   - SUARAM: +6-03-7784 3525

Please send information about raids, rights violations during this
crackdown or any other relevant information to: *raidwatch[at] *

* *

*Media contact: *Irene Fernandez (Tenaganita):

   - irene.f[at]
   - +6-012-316 3011

* Background *

The arrest, detention & deportation of undocumented migrants is the final
phase of the Malaysian government’s Illegal Immigrant Comprehensive
Settlement Programme (6P Programme, “6P”) In spite of the Secretary-General
of the Home Ministry, Tan Sri Mahmood Adam’s declaration that the deadline
for the 6P has been extended to April 10 2012, we have already started
receiving reports of arrests and detention.

On 11th of February, we were informed by refugees and members of the public
that a raid was conducted in Kuala Lumpur, during which between 100 to 200
migrants and refugees were detained. We are aware that some refugees were
taken to detention centres, while the whereabouts of others are currently

In previous Immigration crackdowns (2005 ; 2008) there was high use of
violence against the migrants, migrants were not granted access to a phone
call, or to lawyers ; we fear that similar (if not worse) rights violations
will also take place during this crackdown.

We are also especially concerned for the lives of refugees & stateless
persons (who remain ‘illegal’ under Malaysian law) and for victims of
trafficking who will be arrested, detained and run the risk of deportation
during this crackdown. We are not aware of any processes in place to
protect these populations, and the refugees who are still in detention
after being arrested on the 11th is a reminder of these real threats.

In order to protect the rights and lives of migrants and refugees, we call
on all parties to be vigilant and assist us in monitoring and responding to
this crackdown.


Katrina Jorene Maliamauv
38, Jalan Gasing, 46000, Petaling Jaya, Selangor, Malaysia
Tel: +603 7770 3691 / 7770 3671
Fax: +603 7770 3681

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