Lately, the flood of refugees from Indochina, particularly Vietnam, is increasing dramatically. They have literally?
Lately, the flood of refugees from Indochina, particularly Vietnam, is increasing dramatically. They have literally been bobbing up all over the region in South China Sea.
They now risk their lives in escapes aboard small fishing boats. The latest refugees claimed something like 5,000 refugees are on their way for freedom in mortised small crafts.
There are at least 2,500 refugees in camps along the Malaysian coast. Most of them are from Vietnam. They are the survivors. No one knows how many more have been lost at sea, but the estimates are in the thousands.
Malaysia, Thailand and Singapore try to turn away as many boats as possible. However, according to the United Nations High Commission for Refugees, numbers continue to blossom - the greatest upsurge being in Vietnamese boat-borne runaways. Their rate is now a staggering five times higher than what it was last year, and is still growing.
Most of the refugees want to go to the United States, either because of families already there or because of their own image of what life will be like in America, so they are writing to US and waiting for dreams from their relatives or friends who had already made it to the United States.
Meanwhile, Singapore is faced with the problem of the religious mercy ship "Leapdal", now lying off Johore Baharu with more than 200 Lao, Khmer and Vietnamese refugees aboard, charted by the World Conference on Religion and Peace. The old vessel collected its human cargo in waters of South China Sea.
Both Governments of Singapore and Malaysia do not want them, and would not even let them ashore. They are the refugees - the last victims of the ling and terrible struggle that changed their countries and their lives. Now they are adrift.