Burma Times Correspondent: May 19, 2015
Some ships have been returning to the coastlines of Bangladesh and Burma as they have been unable to make the usual landings due to the Thai crackdown. Those who can pay the ransom money quickly are being freed while others are killed. In such a scenario as traffickers choose to clear out the ship rather than pay the money, there is a grim possibility that dozens if not hundreds might be killed.
Already locals have reported seeing dead bodies in the sea and there are confirmed cases of many migrants being thrown overboard.
Traffickers are attempting to clear out their human cargo as quickly as possible and escape to safety because though the BGP guarantees the safety of trafficking ships in the coastlines of Arakan, many are fearful that international pressure might convince Burmese security forces to launch a sudden crackdown similar to Thailand.
The journey to Thailand is always difficult for migrants but the return journey has been worse because food supplies ran out on the first leg of the journey.
Migrants including children have starved to death in the return journey. As traffickers also did not expect ransom to be paid quickly for every one, many were thrown overboard.
Traffickers are releasing people on an average of 50,000 Bangladesh Taka that is 3 to 4 times less than the rate demanded in Thailand. However those who fail to pay promptly are being thrown overboard as traffickers try to leave in a hurry.