KUALA PERLIS, June 1 — The Malaysian Immigration Department (JIM) relocated 517 Rohingya detainees from the Wawasan Negara camp in Langkawi, Kedah to the immigration depots in Sungai Bakap, Penang and Bidor, Perak today.
Its director-general, Datuk Khairul Dzaimee Daud, said the detainees — with a 20s to 40s age range — had been in the camp since April 2020.
“The reason for the transfer is to save cost and logistics, including food and drink for the detainees,” he told reporters.
Khairul said food costs for the detainees were previously borne by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).
“The UNHCR ended their funding in August which forced JIM to transfer the detainees as a cost measure,” he said.
Khairul said that the detainees were tested for Covid-19 on May 28.
He said they boarded a ferry from Langkawi to Kuala Perlis today at 9.30am, before arriving around 11am today. — Bernama