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It is tragedy that the Government hasturned away 40 people picked up by a ship off the coast of Myanmarwho, from media reports, are Muslim Rohingya. They were seeking refuge in Singapore.$CUT$
The refugees are fleeing persecution in their own country, a situation which observers warn could leadto a genocide campaign.
They have been denied recognition of theircitizenship, prevented from procreating, and experienced censorshipof their historical roots in their country.
Through the years, many of the victimshave fled their homeland out of fear and desperation. The 40 whomwere on board the vessel turned away by the Government were reportedto be fleeing the violence. They were reported to have been adrift at sea for 30 hours before they were rescued by a ship and brought to Singapore.
It was wrong to turn them away as theywere in need of food and medical help. The right thing to do would beto afford them temporary shelter and to ensure their physical safety.The persons can then be repatriated at a later time.
Singaporeans are a compassionate peopleand the Government representing us should not be cold and cruel, onethat calculates everything in material terms.
The PAP can also hardly claim that theturning away of these helpless victims of war is based on nationalsecurity reasons. It is already knee deep in its policy ofindiscriminately bringing in millions of foreigners, a policy that gravely threatens national security in Singapore. Providing temporaryshelter for 40 refugees hardly compares.