Process for taking back some Rohingya refugees 'anytime', Suu Kei tells Nikkei

Joy Montgomery
September 27, 2017

Zayar Nyein in northern Rakhine said the graves were discovered Sunday and contain bodies of 20 females and eight males, and that more bodies are believed to be buried. The mass exodus of Rohingyas from the Rakhine state of Myanmar to escape alleged persecution has put a massive strain on neighbouring Bangladesh.

"There is an abundance of material to show that the Rohingyas are being forced to flee Myanmar due to atrocities systematically carried out against them on account of their religious and ethnic identity", stated the affidavit.

The Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (ARSA) is the group whose attacks on police posts triggered an army backlash so brutal that the United Nations believes it amounts to ethnic cleansing of the Muslim minority.

Amnesty also accused the military of starting fires in the region to prevent refugees from returning despite the Myanmar army chief placing the blame for an explosion outside a mosque in Rakhine on Rohingya militants.

The claims could not be independently verified.

According to government figures, almost 40 per cent of Rohingya villages in northern Rakhine have been completely abandoned over the past month. They also said some Hindus had been killed and some houses burned by the militants.

Displaced Hindus from the area told AFP last week that Rohingya fighters stormed into their communities on Aug 25, killing many and taking others into the forest.

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The Hindus have said they were attacked by Arsa because the militants suspected they were government spies. It is regrettable that some countries are not willing to speak strongly in favour of Rohingyas, who are facing worst kind of brutalities, just for the sake of their commercial, defence or geo-strategic interests and this approach is proving disastrous for the hapless Muslims in Myanmar.

Earlier on Wednesday, a Buddhist mob in Myanmar threw petrol bombs in a bid to block a boat carrying aid for Rohingya Muslims in conflict-hit Rakhine state before police fired warning shots to disperse them.

"The Citizen Amendments Bill allowed persecuted people from the Hindu, Sikh and Buddhist faiths to get Indian citizenship, but Muslims were not allowed even if they were persecuted", Apoorvanand Jha, an academic and activist based in the Indian capital, New Delhi, had said.

Inside Rakhine, bitter ethnic tensions have led to waves of communal violence in the past.

The Rohingya are denied citizenship in Myanmar and regarded as "illegal immigrants", despite claiming roots that date back centuries.

She recalls survivors describing sexual violence being used as a "calculated tool of terror to force targeted populations to flee".

In Bangladesh, which has been hosting hundreds of thousands of Rohingya refugees since the 1990s, about two-thirds of the refugees in the camps are women and girls, including many pregnant women and young mothers, Mr Doraiswamy said.

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