Alan Morison

Some 200 people rescued by police from a human trafficking camp in southern Thailand are suspected to be Uygur Muslims from Xinjiang , Thai police sources said yesterday.

Luigi Maraldi, the Italian man who was named as one of the 239 people on board the missing flight, has spoken of the bizarre circumstances in which he lost his passport last year while on holiday in Phuket.


A Thai immigration official who raids jungle camps holding Rohingya boatpeople said yesterday that up to 10 gangs were involved in the large-scale people-smuggling operation.

Thai immigration officials were involved in the weekend sale of Rohingya detainees to people smugglers, according to sources, whose tips allowed the South China Morning Post to witness part of the clandestine deal taking place.

The influx of Rohingya refugees to Thailand has begun early this year, with a boatload landing yesterday in the country's south - the first of what's likely to be thousands of new arrivals from Myanmar.

More damning evidence has emerged of what villagers describe as the "slaughter" of Rohingya refugees by members of the Thai military near the holiday island of Phuket, with Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra pledging to investigate the incident.

Concerns grow for a group of Rohingya boatpeople who have disappeared from a village where they were being sheltered north of Phuket, after claiming last week that they saw Thai troops shooting at other refugees.

The alleged killings, which are said to have occurred on February 22, came during an attempt by the military to transfer about 20 refugees from the boat on which they arrived from Myanmar with more than 100 others, to a smaller vessel.