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Video shows smugglers beating Rohingya on trafficking boat


Smugglers mercilessly beat rake-thin refugees crowded onto a fishing boat, in a video obtained by AFP news agency that shows rarely seen images from the front lines of the Rohingya trafficking network.
Filmed on a mobile phone by a smuggler who later fled the vessel, the video shows dozens of asylum seekers, including children, sitting in the hull and on the deck as smugglers stand among them.
An argument starts and one of the traffickers, holding a thick rope in one hand, pushes a Rohingya man back and kicks him.
He then uses what appears to be a whip with his other hand to repeatedly lash a group of shirtless men who scramble to avoid the beating.
“They started beating us because we complained about the food,” Mohammad Osman, a 16-year-old passenger, said in an interview at a Bangladesh refugee camp conducted as part of a months-long AFP investigation into the people-smuggling network.
“They randomly beat us just because we were asking for more rice and water.”
Earlier beatings, which were not captured on video, saw some Rohingya die at the hands of the smugglers, he told AFP at the refugee camp.
“They beat us mercilessly – hitting our heads, tearing at our ears, breaking hands.”
Osman mentioned that 46 people on their vessel died from beatings, starvation and illness, giving breakdowns of men, women and children who perished.

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