Bangladesh coastguard rescues 300 trafficking victims

June 12, 2014
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DHAKA, Bangladesh – The coastguard Wednesday (June 11th) rescued a boat in the Bay of Bengal packed with 300 nationals being smuggled to Malaysia, AFP reported.

The boat was being towed to Saint Martin's Island in rough seas, coastguard commander Shahidul Islam said.

"They told us that there are four dead bodies in the ship. We haven't searched the ship yet," he said.

The boat was fired on as it left Bangladesh's southern coast, near Burma, passenger Ziaur Rahman told AFP by phone from the ship.

Another coastguard commander, Harun-or-Rashid, said the ship's engine broke down after a fight erupted between passengers and Burmese crew members.

Rahman, from Teknaf, said he paid a human trafficker about $2,000 for the journey to Malaysia, and that others paid more.

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