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An Ardent Appeal to save the Innocent Rohingya Civilians in Arakan

By Dr. Khurshid Ibn Faiz, The Stateless Rohingya (TSR Article)

The Rohingya Muslims, an ethnic minority in Arakan state of Burma have to face another man-made ethnic cleansing by the Burmese military forces. The lady Aung San Suu Kyi led so-called democratic govt. let their equipped military forces a reign of terror towards the un-armed marginalized Rohingya civilians in Arakan immediately a day after the attack on a few camps and stations of the Border Guard Police (BGP) by the un-identified assailants on Sunday, October 9. Havoc destructions in terms of life, property and infrastructures that belongs to the innocent Rohingya began unabated in the name of searching the militants who made the series of assaults on border posts along the countrys frontiers with Bangladesh.

According to the different national and international media, nearly 200 people led three separate attacks on Kyi Kan Pyin (Khawar bil) , headquarter of BGP of southern Maungdaw and NgaKhuya (Nakfura) outpost in Maungdaw and Rathedaung township from 1.30am to 4.30am at early hours of Sunday, the 9th October 2016. Nine police officers were killed and five other injured. As per different reports , the affiliations to which the assailants belongs to are yet to be identified. The Spokesman of the Arakan State govt. U MIN Aung confessed soon after the attack that the identification or affiliation of the attackers were unknown and was under investigations. The Myanmar Police Chief Maj Gen Zaw Win said in a news conference in the capital Napyidaw on Sunday evening that the assailants were un-identified militants.

In the early hours of attack, reports from different sources assumed that the attack was suspected to be an offensive clash between Burmese Army and Rakhine militant groups under the patronization of radical Buddhist. It is suspected as because of the available reports of crossing a large score of Rakhines to the border illegally and entering in Hansabil village located near Khawarbil (where the attack was carried out) on 7th October , a day before the attack. Where as , the Major Burmese and Rakhine propaganda media that evoked Genocidal Campaign against Rohingya in June 2012, have triggered the blame to the defunct Rohingya Solidarity Organisation which has no existence for decades. It is crystal clear to the world that there has been no armed Rohingya groups but Non-Rohingya armed organization do exist in Rakhine state instead.

In the above pursuance of the Rohingya Muslims to be involvement in the recent attack, the Burmese arm forces have been carrying out relentless post-attack operations using it as a pretext for a crash down in the ethnic Rohingyas. The military and the BGP have staged mass-killings of the innocent Rohingya civilians in Maungdaw and Rathedaung townships since the raid to the BGP posts by some un-identified assailants. The Burmese authority got the momentum to have politically motivated violence against un-armed Rohingya civilians. The authority has been on a Rohingya killing spree. It started raiding Rohingya villages, indiscriminately firing on, committing extra-judicial killings of unconcerned innocent Rohingya civilians en-mass. These innocent civilians have been shooting down out of control. The govt. imposed a curfew of 7pm to 6am and declare a state of emergency in Maungdaw and three other townships. During the curfew, the military along with the BGP forces raids to the Muslims houses and either arrest the civilian staying home or kills them if they fails to help identify the assailants. On the other hand, if any one escape home in fear of life, s/he can be shot dead at sight during curfew hours. As a result, the death-tolls are raising high geometrically. Rohingya women , children and old people from even the extremes of age are subjected more to atrocities as they are weak and defenseless members of the society. In the first two post-attack days, Burmese armed forces massively killed 45 Rohingya civilians who have no knowledge about the assailants. It seems that the ignorance about the attackers was the main fault of the civilians. Most of the homes near the villages of attack were set ablaze. The properties of those who escaped to save their life were looted by the Buddhist radicals. The affected people are now in horns of dilemma depending upon the uncertain fate of the nature. They neither can stay in their homes and hearths nor take refuge to the neighboring countries that have closed down its border brutally. No medical facilities for the wounded people are available in the region in this chaotic situation. Food shortages, lack of health facilities , lack of fuels and necessary food ingredients have been a human crisis to be met urgently.

Some quarters of the national and international society feared that the attack of BGP stations and the counter atrocities by the military forces after the attack were almost pre-planned and well-calculated. In September, Ms Aung San Suu Kyi formed an advisory Commission on Rakhine state headed by the former United Nations Secretary General Mr. Kofi Annan with a view to finding out the facts of long-standing unrest in between the Muslims and Buddhist community in Arakan state and to chalk-out the recommendations to the growth of sustainable communal harmony. The Buddhist radicals in co-operation of military forces have been continuously opposing the Kofi Annan Commission in the fear of ‘restoration of inherent rights of Rohingyas’ by the Commission. It is feared and also suspected that the Rakhine Buddhist may have concocted a drama of making unrest of the law and order situations in Arakan to make ‘null and void’ of the activities of Kofi Annan Commission and to trigger another 2012 violence to be erupted. The world community would not be astonished to witness another IDP concentrated camps in Manugdaw state of northern Arakan where majority of Muslims live.

The Human Rights Watch already expressed its concern that the post attack raid by security forces would erect chaos in western Burma. The senior researcher for Human Rights Watch on Burma David S. Mathieson urged that the army and police should ensure full troops discipline in its operations , as there are frequent reports of human rights abuses by police units against the Rohingya populations. He warned that the ‘research for perpetrators could not be descended into abuses of a local populations already suffering under a restriction on freedom of movement, works and access to services. The UN special advisor Mr. Nambiar also urged the security forces to exercise caution in the future to avoid any injuries or loss of innocent civilians, collateral damage to properties or any perception of harassment of the local population.

The Rohingya Muslims as a whole is a peace-loving community who love to live in their ancestral home with full dignity of own rights and in full communal harmony. They are intended to regain their encroached ethnic and basic human rights including their citizenship which are very much allowed in the preamble charter of Universal Declaration for Human Rights (UDHR) of the United Nations. Under the prevailing circumstances, it is high time to take necessary steps by the concerned and conscious quarters immediately before further escalation of the ‘law and order’ situation to a never-ending violence or possible to a state of civil war.

Therefore, the national and international community should have a moral responsibility towards the innocent Rohingya civilians, to save their lives from the Barbaric armed forces. These innocent civilians do here-with

Call upon the UN to intervene in the current Arakan crisis as per the given Responsibility to Protect (R2P) in the global political commitment adopted by the UN in 2005 world Summit to prevent genocide, war crimes, ethnic cleansing and crimes against humanity.

Urges the international community headed by the UN to send an urgent fact finding team to probe into the current atrocities meted out upon the Rohingya civilians in pretext of miscreant un-identified attack to the police posts.

Urges the NLD led Burmese govt. to ensure Rule of Law and to be followed by its armed forces as vowed by the State Councilor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi after the attack.

Urges to take actions against those criminals who have been trying to breach the communal harmony that leading to disintegration of the activities of Kofi Annan Commission.

Appeals ardently to all the international community like- UN, EU, OIC, ASEAN, and the US to pressurize the Burmese govt. to secure recognition and ensure right and freedom of Rohingya Muslims in Arakan where no mass is tortured , no woman is abused and no child is denied his/her dignity.

* The author is —
— Chief Editor The
— Human Rights activist