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Why is the world ignoring the plight of Rohingya in Arakan, Burma?

By Mohamed Farooq

The UN recorded that Rohingya is one of the most persecuted ethnic minorities in the world and discriminated against them for decades.

 The Riot between Rakhine and Rohingya in 2012 was completely preplanned by Burmese Senior Official Authorities and racist Rakhine terrorists to cleansing ethnic Rohingya minority.

On 28th May 2012, a Rakhine woman Ma Thida Htwe was raped and killed by military personnel and kept the dead body near a Rohingya village of Kyawk Ni Maw, Rambree. When the Rakhine villagers found the dead body near the Rohingya village, they threatened Rohingya that “We will burn down the whole village and kill all Rohingya” The authorities detained 3 Rohingya youths and pushed to death sentences. Moreover the racist Rakhine  planned to kill Rohingya and distributed Pamphlets mentioning  to cleanse Rohingya from Rakhine state written that “ Kill Kala  (abusing word for use for Rohingya by Rakhine) wherever found” which was leaded by a Rakhine group called “ Wam Tha Nu Rakita group” and Rakhine National Development Party (RNDP).

On 3rd June 2012, 10 Muslim pilgrims (Tabliq-e-Jamaat) including a woman from upper Myanmar and a bus conductor were brutally killed into pieces by about three hundred racist Rakhine in Taung Gok township of Arakan state while they were going back to their native land from Than Dwe Township to Yangon Capital of Burma.

On 8th June 2012 at 12:30 pm, a Rohingya teenager from the Shwe Zarr village, Maungdaw Township was attacked by racist Rakhine near the Shwe Zarr Bridge. After Friday congressional prayer, some Rohingya gathered in Maungdaw downtown to pray for the peace of 10 departed Muslim souls killed by Rakhine terrorists. Some Rakhine youths from Maungdaw downtown monastery and United Guest House were throwing stones to the crowded Rohingya. A Rohinyga was severely injured in head by a heavy stone. When some people brought the bleeding victim to the police station to report the case for the legal action, the police District Director instead of taking any action against the Rakhine, he took the victim in the custody and told them to leave the police station instantly.  The outraged group begged the police for the Justice and thrown stone to the clock tower. The security force open fire and a Rohingya youth, Ramzan Ali, from ward-5, Maungdaw was shot dead on the spot.

The Outraged Rohingya teenagers and ignorance people, who saw the dead body and blood shedding, gathered and attacked some Rakhine house in Bomu Vaillage where 3 Rakhine houses were burnt down, the police force was silent to stop them. In Southern Maungdaw, the police used their informers to spread a falsifying rumor that “In Maungdaw downtown, several mosques were burn down and many Rohingya were killed by Rakhine” through mobile to fuel the riot. As soon as Rohingya villagers got that rumor, some teenagers and ignorance people torched up Rakhine village nearby and burned down some of their houses.

In the evening of 8th June 2012, the security forces; Police, Hunting (Paramilitary), Military and Nasaka (Border Security Force) with inspiration of Rakhine attacking Rohingya in everywhere which has been going on still today. This is resumed to the all seventeen townships of Arakan mostly affected in the areas of Akyab where Rohingya accounts are very little compared to Rakhine.

Types of Assaults and Harassments to Rohingya by Security Officials

1. Killing and Arresting
Since 8th June 2012,Rohingya of every category  specially targeted to community leaders and Elders, Rich men, Scholars,  Students, UN and INGOs staffs , Religious leaders and Youths are being  arrested regardless  of mad, deform, sick and old as well as a few women and children. According to reliable source, thousands of Rohingya from Maungdaw were grabbed. Among them, about forty percent were set to free by wresting of money and severely tortured, sent to long term jail 10-20 years. Arrestees were kept in different location such as Maungdaw police custody, Buthidaung Central Jail, Border Immigration Head Quarter of Nasaka (BIHQ) and Nasaka sector areas in Maungdaw. Thousands of Rohingya killed by means of shooting, slaughtering, beating to death and the dead body were buried in different localities such as near Maungdaw entry gate bridge, Yasin’s garden in 3 mile, farmland in Myo Thu Gyi and around Nyaung Chaung bridge in Maungdaw, in the compound of Buthidaung Central Jail, and No.353 cantonment area in Thet Min Chaung village tract, Buthidaung.

Some of the  released prisoners reported that the arrestees were being kept without clothes in the tight rooms and provide a cup (250 ml) of rice per day and tortured severely time to time. It causes many dead every day. The methods of apprehending the Rohingya people are raiding by combined allied forces, conducting meeting and from houses, shops and pedestrians.

2. Properties Looted and Destroyed
In Maungdaw, hundreds of Rohingya houses were burnt down into ashes by racist Rakhine jointly with the support of police and security forces mainly in ward-4, near the Bomu village, ward-5 and Taung Paing Nya (Sammonna) village as like as in the rest townships too. Many Rohingya houses were destroyed and looted all the valuable things. And  mosques were destroyed and the Holy Quran and others religious books were torched and kicked by racist Rakhine and combined allied forces and burnt the beard of some religious leaders.50 shops in Maungdaw downtown were (16 groceries,5 cosmetics and stationary shops, 3 clock shops, 3 food items shops, 3 restaurants, 15 dried fish shops, 4 pharmacies, 1 motor bike shop) and 3 markets  in Maungdaw south ( Baggo na, Gaw Di Tha Ya, and Inn Dinn) which are belong to Rohingya were  destroyed and looted.

3. Fleeing
As result of mass killing and arresting and arbitrary money extortion, more than one third of the Rohingyas men and boys were fled to neighboring Bangladesh although Bangladeshi Government extremely refusing to entry and most of them were push back. But the Burma regime did not try to stop them from fleeing as they are using several strategies to make Rohingya Free Zone to the Arakan state. Many Rohingya were fled because of torturing and physical and mental harassment. Among them, many people were dead in the river by sinking of the boats and, with starvation and dehydration.

4. Rape
The Rohingya women and girl are being raped everyday in absented of men almost men were not sleeping at home for the fear of arrest. Many Rohingya women and girls were critically gang raped in several villages such as Pa Dinn, Narullah Para, Baggona,Chill Kali (Ohn Taw), Nga Kura and Maung Ni Para by security forces and Model Rakhine settlers. There was also Physical harassment and beating to Rohingya women, girls and children in every village.

5. Movement Restriction
On 10th June 2012, the central government imposed martial law (Act-144) in the whole Arakan state. In practical, it is applied only for Rohingya community and not for the Rakhine and others as they could loot more than 50 Rohingya shops in downtown of Maungdaw during curfew period and destroyed many Rohingya houses at night for two months.

Since 8th June 2012, no Rohingya are allowed to move from one village to another and all the mosques were and Arabic schools were being locked and not allowed to pray in the mosques even in the day time and could not walk along the road as the security forces and racist Rakhine beat, loot the things they carried and arrest them on the road. The Rakhine youths assaulted the Rohingya children when they go Market to buy food items but no action was taken against them even though it is reported to the concerned authorities.

6. Blockage of Food and Medical Supply
Food items selling to Rohingya are forbidden by the monks and racist Rakhine. They are also trying to stop the operations of UN/INGOs permanently by demonstrating on the road, conducting meetings in every monastery to blame the operations of UN and INGOs by creating negative events. The main purposes of trying to get rid of UN and INGOs from Rakhine state are;  (1) they become main barrier and obstacle for racist Rakhine and authorities in creating human rights violence against Rohingyas, (2) the racist Rakhine and authorities are jealous to Rohingyas as they are receiving some professional jobs in UN and INGOs.

No health Facilities for Rohingyas are available since the conflict erupted as all NGOs had to stop their operations, healthcare and clinics. Government hospital is openly refusing to provide treatment to Rohingya and they also use harsh word “the hospital is not for “Kala”. So, the Rohingya people are dying everyday by starvation and lack of medical treatment.

7. Abuse on Religion
Huge numbers of  mosques were destroyed and the holy Q’uran and other religious books were torn and kicked by the security forces in several places and burnt the beard of old people and religious leaders. The campaign is to drive out Rohingya anyhow from the soil of Arakan. Even primary religious schools are shutdown for Rohingya children where learn what is religion.