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Malaysia turns away boats as death stalks weary migrants

Rohingya migrants are pictured on a boat off the southern Thai island of Koh Lipe in the Andaman Sea on May 14, 2015Malaysia turned away two vessels carrying hundreds of migrants while one boat turned up in Thai waters, as critics accused Southeast Asian governments Thursday of playing “human ping pong” with desperate boatpeople. Malaysia and Indonesia have vowed to bar ships bearing migrants from Myanmar and Bangladesh from entering Southeast Asia waters, triggering warnings from UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and rights groups that the hardline approach could endanger thousands at sea and falls short of their international obligations. On Thursday, a boat crammed with scores of Rohingya — a persecuted Muslim minority in Myanmar — was found drifting in Thai waters.

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