KUALA LUMPUR, June 21 — The Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) has banned refugees, even those recognised by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), from entering the Kuala Lumpur Wholesale Market in Selayang.
The notice, which was issued on Friday, June 19 by Mayor Datuk Nor Hisham Ahmad Dahlan, also said that foreigners are only allowed into the market if they have a valid permit and are accompanied by a Malaysian.
“Any individuals entering the Kuala Lumpur Wholesale Market will be screened and must register before they are allowed entry.
“All licensees and workers at the market (including IIUM, Wholesale Consortium, High Kuan and FCCT) can only enter if you are carrying a licensed/worker’s pass.
“Foreign customers can only enter if you have a valid permit and accompanied by a Malaysian.
“All UNHCR card holders are denied entry,” said the notice.
No reason was given for the ban on the refugees.
A report by online portal Malaysiakini said that a DBKL staff had confirmed that the notice was issued by its licensing department.
Recently, authorities had raided the market as well as its vicinity which led to the arrests of hundreds of undocumented migrants, including Rohingya refugees. Foreigners made up around 90 per cent of the market workers.
The market located in Selayang was also temporarily closed for four days in April to disinfect the premises and screen the workers after it was identified as a Covid-19 cluster where 28 people were infected and a 36-year-old Myanmar man had died.
On June 18, Federal Territories Minister Tan Sri Annuar Musa said that there are still undocumented migrants trading in the vicinity of the market, but there are none within the premises itself.