Burma Times Correspondent: October 20, 2015
Human traffickers have been roaming freely in the refugee camps of Bangladesh, for the first time in many months.
Following an international uproar in May, human traffickers in Bangladesh went into hiding. At that time Bangladesh police and BGB launched a crackdown against the criminals. The crackdown was criticised in the local media for not bringing into justice the big fishes who protected the criminal syndicates.
During the monsoon season, the voyages stop and don’t start till October. Just as the season approaches, the human traffickers are back in the open operating under the noses of local administration who are looking the other way, say sources.
The Bangladesh administration is notorious for corruption and though participation in the deadly trade is not as open as in Myanmar, human traffickers are fully protected by the state machinery. Analysts say the anti trafficking operation in May was done under pressure from the international community.
The arrival of human traffickers coincide with the disappearance of at least one Rohingya child in the camp. Besides the voluntary migrants, there is always the risk that children and young men are kidnapped and forced into the boats.
Meanwhile traffickers were loudly boasting to locals in one of the refugee camps that they had cleared the route and Thailand and Malaysia would not be able to stop them.