H.E. Emmanuel Macron
The honourable President of the French Republic
55, Rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré
75008 Paris, France
Date: 10 October 2017
Dear Mr. President,
We, the undersigned representatives of Rohingya worldwide first like to let you know how grateful we are to the French Republic for rightly termed the attacks on Rohingya minority, who are considered by the UN the most persecuted in the world, as “genocide’.
In the purpose of the meeting you will hold with Kofi Annan we are bringing to your kind attention the following concerns:
- Thousands of Rohingya ethnic minority are fleeing daily (vast majority of them women and children) to join more than 500,000 Rohingyas already at the Bangladesh border because of the constant intimidation, harassment, threatening and otherwise progressive denial of access to food and livelihoods.
- Myanmar’s criminal deeds are beyond the purview of Mr. Kofi Annan’s Advisory Commission on Rakhine State, which, by its own official admission, did not investigate the allegations of Myanmar’s egregious and systematic violations of human rights and other international treaties, including the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (1989) that Myanmar ratified in 1991.
- Rohingya worldwide commend Mr. Kofi Annan and his commission’s recommendations which include normalizing and re-integrating Rohingyas as a self-identifiable and distinct ethnic community, who have been stripped of its ethnicity, full citizenship and basic rights and freedoms in Myanmar for nearly 4 decades.
- However, the Annan Commission’s recommendation that Rohingyas allow themselves to be subjected to the verification process as required by Myanmar’s perpetrating hybrid government of NLD-military as a pathway to citizenship is deeply troubling — in light of the fact that the process imposes forcibly a false group identity, Bengali — in blatant violation of the UN-recognized group’s right to self-identify.
- Rohingyas are rightly and completely distrustful of Myanmar government’s official narrative concerning the Rohingya refugees that have fled Myanmar since October 2016, and specifically:
-(i) Minister of the Myanmar State Counsellor Office Kyaw Tint Swe repeatedly emphasized what State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi said last month that Myanmar would take back “verified”
-(ii) Myanmar Vice Senior General Soe Win, the number two leader of the country’s military, told the Swiss Ambassador on 3rd October that the “Bengalis” are not entitled to direct full citizenship and hence they have to be subjected to a verification process Two main reasons make us worried about the verification process that could become a persecution instrument depriving the Rohingyas from the fundamental right to citizenship and from any protection:
Myanmar seized and destroyed, for many years, any proof of documentation and for a large number of Rohingyas did not issue any form of documentation. The Rohingyas lack documents for the verification and the resettlement as their houses and villages, at the same time, were burned down. The Rakhine State government and Rakhine politicians are trying to establish Buddhist villages on those Rohingyas’ villages and lands. Myanmar central government has already claimed state ownership of the Rohingyas’ land within the affected region of Northern Rakhine State and has planned to confine the repatriated refugees in displacement camps like that in Rakhine’s capital Sittwe, which were recently described by New York Times as 21st century concentration camps.
The Rohingyas, natural born citizens but also an ethnic group recognized by the only parliamentary government of Burma/Myanmar that ruled the country from independence in 1948 to 1962 until military took over will lose their original ethnicity as Rohingya to become Bengali.
We are sure that you will continue to denounce the blatant violations of international law by a member state in the false pretext of “national defence”, “anti-terrorism”, and that you will not be of those who, by shutting their eyes on the atrocities taking place in Myanmar, erode the trust of We the People around the world, in the capacity of the Nations to stop what you have rightly and responsibly qualified as a genocide.
We thank the French State to consider seriously the long-term concerns of the, terrified and traumatized Rohingyas and their safety, so that any repatriation would be totally accepted to by themselves on a voluntary basis, and not under duress, and with international safeguards that guarantee physical well-being and access to life-sustaining essentials such as food, access to their land on which they earn their living.
Accept, Excellency, the consideration of our highest esteem.
The European Rohingya Council
Arakan Rohingya National Organization
Arakan Rohingya Union
Burmese Rohingya Organization UK
Burmese Rohingya Community in Denmark
Burmese Rohingya Community Ireland
Burmese Rohingya Community Netherlands
Burmese Rohingya Community Norway
Burmese Rohingya Association Japan
Burmese Rohingya Community Australia
Burmese Rohingya Association in Queensland- Australia (BRAQA)
Rohingya Community in Germany
Rohingya Community in Switzerland
Rohingya Organisation Norway
Rohingya Community in Finland
Rohingya Community in Italy
Rohingya Community in Sweden
Rohingya Society Malaysia
Rohingya Arakanese Refugee Committee
Rohingya Advocacy Network
Japan Rohingya American Society
Dr. Hla Kyaw; firstname.lastname@example.org; +31652358202