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Still no approval for aid ship’s volunteers to disembark in Bangladesh, PM’s help sought

A file picture of the Nautical Aliya. - Bernama

BAY OF BENGAL: The Rohingya aid ship has still not received approval for its mission’s volunteers to get off the Nautical Aliya onto Bangladeshi soil, organisers said.

They have now turned to Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak and have asked him for help over the matter.

“I have informed the Prime Minister and he has responded. He is trying his best to discuss (this) with his counterpart,” organiser co-chief Datuk Seri Abdul Azeez Abdul Rahim told reporters on Sunday.

The Nautical Aliya is carrying some 2,100 tonnes of aid cargo for Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh.

It previously dropped off more than 200 tonnes in Myanmar on Thursday for the Rohingya there.

The ship is expected to dock in Chittagong, Bangladesh at about 4pm on Monday.

Azeez did not answer when asked what they would do if Bangladesh still did not give its approval by Monday.

“We just wait for our Prime Minister. We don’t pre-empt,” he said.

In a related matter, he refuted claims that the aid cargo dropped off in Yangon was seized by Myanmar’s military and monks there.

He added that the aid items were still at a warehouse in Yangon, and that a plan was in the works to bring the 522 tonnes – including 300 tonnes which were already in Myanmar – of cargo to Sittwe by ship.

As of 1.30pm local time, the Nautical Aliya was about 41km northwest of Owa, Myanmar.

The Star Online