The group Refugees International says ethnic Chin refugees from Burma are especially vulnerable in Malaysia's crackdown on illegal migrants.
The group says more than 2,500 of the estimated 12,000 Chin refugees in Malaysia have applied for registration as asylum seekers with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees.
But the group says many of them have complained that the process is too slow. About 120 Chin are currently being held in detention centers, where they may spend months or even years while their cases are being decided.
Refugees International says Malaysia should afford protection to all asylum seekers while making it possible for them to seek legal employment.