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  • Rescue workers and forensic officials dig out skeletons from shallow graves covered by bamboo at the site of a mass grave at an abandoned jungle camp in the Sadao district of Thailand's southern Songkhla province bordering Malaysia.

    Rescue workers and forensic officials dig out skeletons from shallow graves covered by bamboo at the site of a mass grave at an abandoned jungle camp in the Sadao district of Thailand's southern Songkhla province bordering Malaysia. | Photo: AFP

Published 24 May 2015

The graves are believed to contain bodies of hundreds of migrants from Myanmar and Bangladesh.

Malaysian police have discovered 30 mass graves which are believed to contain the bodies of Myanmar and Bangladesh migrants, the country's home minister said.

“We don’t know how many there are,” Zahid Hamidi, Malaysia’s home ministersaid, referring to the number of bodies. “We are probably going to find more bodies… These graves are believed to be a part of human trafficking activities involving migrants.”

Hamidi confirmed the discovery of the mass graves in two locations in the northern state of Perlis, which borders Thailand.

In recent weeks, several South East Asian countries including Thailand, Indonesia and Malaysia have turned away boats carrying thousands of migrants fleeing their respective countries.

Malaysia is on a route used by smugglers bringing people to Southeast Asia by boat from Myanmar. Most of these migrants are Rohingya people who say they are fleeing persecution, as well as Bangladeshis seeking work.

Local law enforcement believe that the discovery had a connection to mass graves found on the Thai side of the border earlier this month.

​Some 920 migrants, most of them from Myanmar and Bangladesh, are believed to have perished in the Bay of Bengal between September 2014 and March this year.

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