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Sri Lanka Intensifies Efforts for Rescue and Repatriation of Nationals Caught in Myanmar Trafficking Scandal

The Foreign Affairs Ministry, in collaboration with the Sri Lankan Embassy in Myanmar, is actively engaged in extensive efforts to rescue and repatriate Sri Lankan nationals ensnared in human trafficking schemes within Myanmar, the Colombo-based Foreign Affairs Ministry has announced.

According to official sources, these Sri Lankans have fallen prey to various online scams in the Myawaddy region of Myanmar, where they were deceived with false promises of legitimate job opportunities in the IT sector.

Foreign Minister M.U.M. Ali Sabry has raised this critical issue with Myanmar’s Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs, urgently seeking their intervention to rescue Sri Lankan nationals. The Sri Lankan Embassy in Myanmar consistently communicates the dire situation of these victims engaged in cybercriminal activities to Myanmar authorities, urging immediate action to liberate them from distressing circumstances. The Government of Myanmar has assured that all necessary measures will be taken promptly to rescue the victims from traffickers.

Acting Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, U.L. Mohammed Jauhar, met with the Myanmar Ambassador in Colombo on February 22, 2024, reiterating the urgent need for assistance in the safe rescue and repatriation of Sri Lankan nationals in the Myawaddy area.

While Myanmar’s government is making efforts, challenges in accessing the concerned area persist due to the current situation. The Ministry is closely coordinating with Sri Lankan Missions in neighboring Southeast Asian countries and international organizations to ensure the well-being and prompt repatriation of these Sri Lankans. Collaboration with other nations affected by similar issues is also being explored.

The Ministry cautions against certain individuals attempting to solicit money from affected families, promising assistance in the rescue and repatriation process. Families are urged to exercise extreme caution in dealing with such solicitations.

The Foreign Affairs Ministry emphasizes its continuous engagement with relevant authorities, assuring that all conceivable avenues are being pursued to secure the rescue and safe repatriation of Sri Lankans victimized by human trafficking in Myanmar, maintaining close collaboration with Myanmar Government authorities.

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