24 Apr 2019

Bangladesh trafficking victims in Vanuatu plead with officials

12:54 pm on 24 April 2019

Dozens of Bangladeshi human trafficking victims stuck in Vanuatu have told diplomats from Bangladesh they don't want to go back to their country.

A group of Bangladeshi men stuck in limbo in Port Vila

Photo: Shahin Khan

A group of 101 migrants who are under Vanuatu police protection in the capital Port Vila are hoping for third country resettlement.

A spokesperson for the men, Shahin Khan, said they met with a representative from Bangladesh's High Commission in Australia on Monday.

He said almost all the migrants - some of whom fear they will be killed by loan sharks in Bangladesh - told the official they don't want to return home.

"We asked to find jobs for us in Australia and News Zealand so we can work and support our families and we can live with honour and dignity. We don't want to be burden for any society nor we want to live a live as a beggar," he said in an email.

Mr Khan said the official, Nahid Afroz, also met with Vanuatu's foreign affairs ministry on Monday.