At least 32 people died and their bodies were thrown into the sea, Islam said, citing statements from the rescued refugees. "The deaths were due to several causes. Some died due to lack of food while some due to various illnesses," he said.
As the boat reached the Malaysian coast, it was turned back by the country's authorities, Islam said. The overcrowded trawler then traveled to Myanmar and tried to enter twice but was denied entry by the Myanmar navy, according to Islam. The Malaysian coast guard has not yet responded to CNN's request for comment on Friday. CNN also reached out on Friday to Myanmar's Foreign Ministry and its embassy in Dhaka, Bangladesh's capital, but has not received a response.