A boatload of more than 100 Rohingya Muslims who fled a camp in Myanmar were found off the country's south coast Friday after spending 15 days at sea in a failed attempt to reach Malaysia.
The group of 106 people were discovered floating in a wooden boat on the Andaman Sea just off the shore of Kyauktan township an hour south of Myanmar's commercial capital of Yangon, police told AFP.
The Rohingya said their group included 23 children and that a girl had died "about nine days ago".
"One girl died at sea... she had not eaten and had drank seawater," said Eilia, 35, who added the boat had run out of petrol.
Others in the mostly male group said they were from various Rohingya camps in Sittwe, Rakhine state's capital.
"We left 15 days ago and are going to Malaysia," said a young Rohingya man, who was immediately barred from speaking to reporters by police.
The group was escorted by local Red Cross members and immigration officers to Kyauktan township in eight vans, with four armed police officers in each vehicle. Once in Kyauktan they were given shelter in a community hall.