No refuge on earth: The plight of landless Rohingyas
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2017-08-13 05:29:12

No refuge on earth: The plight of landless Rohingyas

 

Myanmar is imposing new curfews and deploying more troops to Rakhine state, the government confirmed on Saturday, after the United Nations expressed alarm at reports of a military build-up in the region where authorities are accused of widespread rights abuses.    

News that an army battalion was flown into Rakhine this week to boost security met criticism from UN special rapporteur Yanghee Lee on Friday, who warned it was “cause for major concern”.    

 

Buddhist-majority Myanmar has long faced criticism for its treatment of the more than one million Rohingya, who are denied citizenship and struggle to access basic services.  

Due to brutal violence, large numbers of Rohingyas fled to Bangladesh led to the creation of refugee camps and precipitated another crisis after the ethnic group had to compete with other marginalised groups for increasingly scarce humanitarian aid and employment opportunities available there.

 

Their presence in Bangladesh was resented and even opposed at the political level, forcing thousands of them to seek refuge elsewhere, most notably India. This week, however, Indian officials announced plans to deport around 40,000 Rohingya Muslims living illegally from their country during a meeting with their Bangladesh and Myanmar counterparts. Delhi’s proposed move crafted in consultation with state governments would deliver yet another body blow to this beleaguered group.

 

It is also clear that India is likely to exploit its status as a non-signatory to the UN conventions on refugees to carry out the deportation of the Rohingya. Condemnations of the contemplated move have been swift and fierce with rights group Amnesty International calling it an ‘unconscionable’ act.

 

In the meantime Myanmar’s present government has maintained a criminal silence over the fate of the Rohingya — the underlying dynamic driving the repression faced by the group. Initially it was the Buddhist monks, elements of the old military regime and the opposition parties that were indifferent to their plight. But it now seems Myanmar as a whole is uninterested in protecting their fellow citizens from harm.

Pk.shafqna.com

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Tags:   UN ، Rohingyas ، Myanmar ، Rakhine ،
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