The international effort to resettle thousands of refugees from Indochina continues. On Thursday (30 November),?
The international effort to resettle thousands of refugees from Indochina continues. On Thursday (30 November), groups of Vietnamese and Laotian refugees arrived in Belgium and France to be housed and settled.
SYNOPSIS: More than two hundred refugees from the freighter, Hai Hong, stranded off the Malaysian coast, arrived in Paris on flight from Kuala Lumpur. The group included sixty children who were given medical examinations and warm clothes on their arrival.
Belgium has offered to take one hundred and fifty passengers from the Hai Hong. This group of sixty eight came from a refugee camp in Indochina and will be cared for a Brussels by the Intergovernmental Committee for European Migrations.
Belgium has taken about five hundred refugees from Indochina during the past year. The United States has agreed to take more than twenty one thousand additional refugees from Indochina, including some of the passengers from the Hai Hong. Canada and France have said they will take more than eight hundred passengers form the freighter, which has been off the coast of Malaysia since the 9th November. The Vietnamese passengers on board have been refused permission to disembark by the Malaysian government.
The Commonwealth Secretary General, Shridath Ramphal, says Malaysia is facing an emergency situation created by the influx or refugees. He said standard arrangements, such as immigrant quotas, would not solve the problem. And he said he would do everything in his power to make sure Commonwealth countries appreciated the seriousness of the situation.