RCI into Wang Kelian mass graves begins public hearings

Over 100 graves and 28 abandoned camps were found at Bukit Wang Burma in Wang Kelian. (Bernama pic)

PUTRAJAYA: The government’s royal commission of inquiry (RCI) into the discovery of mass graves and human trafficking camps in Perlis three years ago will begin its public hearing sessions on the matter today.

The hearings will be held over three days: April 17, 18 and 22.

The RCI was announced by the home ministry on Jan 27, with Home Minister Muhyiddin Yassin saying the commission would investigate the matter and bring to justice those involved.

The inquiry was led by former chief justice Arifin Zakaria, assisted by former inspector-general of police Norian Mai and six other members whose appointments received the consent of the Yang di-Pertuan Agong.

The commission was given six months to come up with a report.

The mass graves, 139 in total, and 28 abandoned camps were discovered at Bukit Wang Burma in Wang Kelian, near the Malaysia-Thailand border.

Over 100 skeletal remains, believed to be of Rohingya refugees, were found in the graves.

The government at the time was criticised for the lack of action against top officials. Although four individuals were charged in court, critics said these were merely small-time traffickers.