U.S. lawmakers press Obama administration on human trafficking

Rohingya people from Myanmar, who were rescued from human traffickers, react from inside a communal cell at Songkhla IDCU.S. lawmakers called on the Obama administration on Tuesday to punish countries that do too little to fight human trafficking, including Thailand and Malaysia, and said Myanmar should not receive a waiver to avoid possible sanctions over its record. Citing reports on the exploitation of Myanmar’s Rohingya Muslim minority in their home country as well as Thailand and Malaysia, Republican U.S. Representative Chris Smith said authorities have done too little to protect them. “Rohingya are leaving Burma by the thousands to escape religious persecution,” Smith said at a House of Representatives subcommittee hearing on Tier Rankings and the U.S. State Department’s annual Trafficking in Persons report, citing a Reuters investigation into the treatment of Rohingya Muslims.

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