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Joint Statement on the Official Report of the Rakhine (Arakan) Investigation Commission

Source By Kaladan Press:

Date: May 4, 2013

JOINT STATEMERNT ON THE OFFICIAL REPORT OF THE RAKHINE (ARAKAN)
INVESTIGATION COMMISSION

We the undersigned organizations reject the 186-page official report
dated 22 April 2013 of the Arakan Investigation Commission as follows:


  1. The Rakhine Investigation Commission formed on
    17 August 2012 by President Thein Sein included representatives from
    various religious and political parties and democracy groups except
    Rohingya representatives, who have been actual and potential victims of
    deadly violence and genocidal attacks. Haji U Nyunt Maung Shein and U Tin
    Maung Than, the two prominent Muslim leaders were purged from the
    Commission seeing that they were most insistent on the truth.
  2. It is a biased report favouring Rakhines,
    their hostile views and arguments towards Rohingya people. It purposely
    suppresses the core fact of the problem that the Rohingya people have long
    been subjected to institutionalized persecution, ethnic cleansing and
    genocidal onslaughts at the hands of the government and state sponsored
    non-state actors, particularly the extremist Rakhines.
  3. The Inquiry Commission has lost its
    credibility since it has been manned with people who either directly or
    indirectly supported, involved or publicly put fuel on crisis. The
    commission member veterinary doctor Aye Maung (MP), leader of the Rakhine
    Nationalities Development Party (RNDP), is the main mastermind in the
    violence and ‘Rohingya ethnic cleansing’, who graphically described his
    Rohingya annihilation plan in Rathedaung Rakhine Conference held on 25-26
    September 2012. Nearly every understanding or recommendation of the
    Commission translates the view of the RNDP.
  4. The Commission, despite comprising of
    scholarly people, has largely distorted Rohingya historicity dubbing them
    ‘Bengalis’ and depicting them migrant community with no historical roots
    in Arakan, although they are a people developed in Arakan from peoples of
    different ethnical backgrounds over the centuries with their Muslim
    settlements dated back to early 8th century.
  5. The previous parliamentary government
    recognized the ‘Rohingya’ as one of the many ethnic groups of the Union of
    Burma with their language programme relayed thrice weekly from government
    Burma Broadcasting Service (BBS), Rangoon. In spite of that the Commission
    has deliberately ignored this documented fact and used the term ‘Bengali’ supporting
    the fierce contention of the Rakhine promoting ‘Rohingya ethnocide’ aims
    at turning Arakan into a Muslim-free Rakhinized region.
  6. The Commission report falsely elevates the
    position of Rakhine as ‘prime nation’ and relegates the Rohingya as ‘sub-nation’
    thus promoting the government’s current plan to segregate Rohingya under
    its ‘neo-apartheid policy’. It describes the Rohingyas as low-class and
    uncultured hardworking people, who produce more children and want to seize
    the arable lands of the lazy Rakhines. It is insulting that the
    commissioners felt irritated by the repeated telephone calls from
    ‘dying-alive Rohingyas’ giving accounts of their sufferings emotionally
    for redress.
  7. The Commission never called for the
    accountability of the government and its agencies, state sponsored
    non-state actors or Rakhine extremists for June-October 2012 deadly
    violence or carnage, and for their decades of Rohingya persecution,
    tyranny, exclusion and xenophobia that reduce them to the present state of
    helplessness, without basic freedoms like freedom of movement, religion,
    education, marriage, right to business, right to work etc.
  8. The Commission never pointed out the hostile
    environment and impossible situation created by the administration with
    the oppressive functionaries and government agencies like NaSaKa border
    security force, police, Lon Htin and army and Rakhine terrorists for a
    peaceful living of the Rohingya. As a result, half of their population of
    more than 1.5 million people have had left their homeland of Arakan to
    escape persecution. They are living in Bangladesh, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia,
    UAE, Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, Australia, New Zealand, Europe, USA,
    Canada and other countries.
  9. The Commission never hinted the tragedies of
    the Rohingya boat people arising out of the continued large-scale
    persecution and crimes against humanity against Rohingya community in
    Arakan although the problem becomes a concern of the UN, OIC, EU, ASEAN
    and international community.
  10. The report made no mention of the statement of
    President Thein Sein as well as the demand of the RNDP leader Dr. Aye
    Maung to deport Rohingya people to a third country, which reflects and
    promotes official ‘Rohingya ethnic-cleansing policy’ of the government.
  11. The Commission ignored to call for amendment
    of the world most repressive Burma Citizenship Law of 1982. Its
    recommendations lack the spirits of the Universal Declaration of Human
    Rights (UDHR) and international human rights and humanitarian laws.
  12. The report extremely distorted the number of
    deaths and extent of destruction of the Rohingya and Kaman Muslims whereas
    there are reports of several mass graves of Rohingya dead bodies; and the
    credible human rights group Human Rights Watch (HRW) stated that it has
    uncovered 4 mass graves in North Arakan. Likewise an Al-Jazeera
    documentary film released after the violence confirmed that crimes of
    genocide have been committed in Arakan against the Rohingya.
  13. The report stayed away from mentioning that
    the police, Lon Htin, NaSaKa and army took part in the killing of the
    Muslims and torching their houses. The report mentions about the
    imposition of section 144, but lamentably it fails to tell the tangible
    truth that the curfew has only been applied on the Rohingyas or Muslims
    while the Rakhine terrorists, including armed cadres of the Arakan
    Liberation Party/Army (ALP/ALA), were allowed to carry on the genocidal
    onslaughts and mass destruction against the Muslims.
  14. Waves of deadly violence carried against the
    Rohingyas and Kamans were pre-planned by the RNDP, of course, with the
    backing of the administration under the pretext of rape and murder of a
    28-year old Rakhine woman Ma Thida Twe. Most of the issues raised by the
    Commission as the causes of violence were irrelevant as well as unfounded.
  15. The Commission did partiality by endorsing the
    make-believe story of the government which stated that Ma Thida Twe was
    raped and murdered by what they called three Bengalis. But according to
    highly credible person of the Commission, there was no trace of rape found
    by the doctor who performed post mortem of her corpse; but the doctor was
    forced to sign the official post mortem report. Moreover, there was no
    mention of the ‘suicide in police custody’ of the principal accused Mr.
    Htet Htet who happened to be a Rakhine, not Rohingya or Bengalis.
  16. It is a concocted allegation of the Commission
    that an excess number of 5,603 refugee families with 30,338 members had to
    be repatriated from Bangladesh in 1978. International community was well
    aware that the repatriation was done under strict scrutiny on both sides
    of the borders, and that the refugees had resisted the forced repatriation
    for lack of congenial atmosphere for their safe return to Arakan. The
    question naturally arises is who would be going to the hellish Arakan where
    the human right situation of .the Rohingyas were dire.
  17. The report said that “in 1988 Ma Ra Waddi
    monastery at Maungdaw was burned down by Bengalis and the abbot had
    escaped away; the monastery was torched by the Bengalis for three times”.
    It is baseless information aims at inciting public sentiment against the
    Rohingyas.
  18. The Commissions reported some imaginary and
    nonsense information like Rohingyas attacking Rakhines, destroying
    Buddhist monasteries and committing rape of their women. It also said that
    “in 1998, more than 5,000 people led by Rohingya Liberation Organization
    (RLO) suddenly entered Maungdaw and tried to occupy the town by destroying
    Buddhist monasteries, torching Rakhine quarters and killing every single
    Rakhine, but the police could control the situation through resistance.”
    In reality there was no party by the name of RLO; and also there was no
    information, record or report of such plot or attack among the general
    public and in the media. The allegation is a blatant lie and politically motivated.
    It is surprising that, although there have been numerous cases of killing
    of Rohingya, rape of Rohingya women and girls, destruction and torching of
    their houses, looting of their properties and extortion on daily basis,
    committed by the extremist Rakhines, police and security forces, the
    biased and bigoted Commission did not mention a single such incident. This
    lie proves that the Commission is contemptible and its report is a rubbish
    piece.
  19. There was no incident on 8th of June 2012 that
    the Rohingyas chanted slogan “long live Muslilms, kill all Rakhines”. This
    is concocted report promoting hatred against the Rohingyas.
  20. The Commission reported that 246 Rakhines and
    1589 Rohingyas were arrested since violence, But it is regretted that
    Commission did not investigate how and why these Rohingyas had been
    arrested and also it did not say anything about the jail killing, the
    squalid condition and inhuman and degrading treatment and torture of the
    Rohingya inmates .
  21. The Commission’s recommendations to double the
    security forces and take effective measures to prevent so-called illegal
    immigrants from Bangladesh is just a false alarm intended to distract
    attention from the main issue of Rohingya genocide. For the Rohingyas,
    increase in armed and security forces means increased crimes against
    humanity against them. It is important that repressive functionaries
    should not be augmented if they do not maintain law and order situation to
    ensure security, justice and equality without discrimination.
  22. There are no Rohingya illegal immigrants in
    Arakan, which has long been a big hell and concentration camp for the
    Muslims. In fact, Rohingyas have been systematically expelled or have had
    to leave their homeland since 1942 Muslim massacre in Arakan. In contrast,
    tens of thousands of illegal Bengali Rakhine Buddhists are regularly
    invited and settled down on the confiscated lands of the Rohingyas. The
    whole northern Arakan is now dotted with Buddhist settler villages. But
    the Commission is silent about it.
  23. However, we welcome some forward-thinking
    recommendations, including recommendations to address the dire
    humanitarian situation in Muslim displacement camps provided that they are
    truly, humanely, immediately and timely implemented.
  24. Last but not least, we call for an immediate
    UN Inquiry Commission to conduct a prompt, full and impartial
    investigation of all allegations and take appropriate action against those
    responsible.
Signatories to this joint statement:

Arakan Rohingya National Organisation (ARNO)
Burmese Rohingya Organisation United Kingdom (BROUK)
Burmese Rohingya Association Japan (BRAJ)
Burmese Rohingya Community in Australia (BRCA)
Burmese Rohingya Association Deutschland (BRAD)
Burmese Rohingya Community in Denmark (BRCD)
Burmese Rohingya Community in Netherlands (BRCNL)
Burmese Rohingya Association in Thailand (BRAT)
Rohingya Community in Norway (RCN)
Rohingya Society Malaysia (RSM)

For more information, please contact:
Tun Khin: + 44 788 871 4866
Nay San Lwin + 49 179 653 5213