Monday, 30 September 2013

Rohingya Muslims in hiding in Myanmar after outbreak of sectarian violence


Buddhist mob torched houses and surrounded mosque in latest incident of communal unrest
Monday, 30 September, 2013, 3:28pm
Terrified Muslims hid in their homes in northwest Myanmar on Monday after armed police dispersed a Buddhist mob that torched houses and surrounded a mosque in the latest outbreak of sectarian tension.

Clashes between majority Buddhists and Muslims have killed at least 237 people and left more than 150,000 homeless since June last year.

The violence threatens to undermine political and economic reforms launched in the two years since a quasi-civilian government replaced a military junta.

The situation in the town of Thandwe was precarious after police restored order by firing shots in the air to break up the mob late on Sunday, said two security sources, who sought anonymity as they were not authorised to speak to the media.

Thandwe, 260 km from the capital Yangon, is in Rakhine state, the worst-hit region. As in several previous bouts of communal unrest, a minor disagreement triggered an outpouring of anger, a local Muslim politician said.

“We’re now scared and hiding inside our homes, like the previous times,” Kyaw Zan Hla, chairman of the Kaman Muslim Party, told Reuters by telephone, adding that about 200 people had joined the mob, some wearing masks and carrying flaming torches.

He said he had himself become embroiled in a row after he objected to a Buddhist man parking a motorcycle in front of his home late on Saturday and rumours spread that he had insulted Buddhism.

Police reported no deaths or injuries from the incident in Thandwe, home to an airport used by tourists who visit resorts on the popular Ngapali beach nearby.
In April, the government said 192 people were killed in June and October last year clashes between ethnic Rakhine Buddhists and Rohingya Muslims, most of whom Myanmar regards as illegal immigrants from Bangladesh, despite roots going back generations.

The United Nations has described the Rohingya as “virtually friendless”.
Clashes between Rohingya and Rakhines in June last year led to unrest elsewhere in the country, where other groups of Muslims have been targeted, including Kamans, who are of different ethnicity from Rohingyas. An estimated five per cent of Myanmar’s population of about60 millions is Muslims.

Credit:Reuters in Yangon

More Details about Attacks in Tandwe township: 30/09 /13

More Details about Attacks in Tandwe township: 

a house belong to a Kaman muslim, U Kyaw Zan Hla, was burn down during the first attack by Rakhine people by the evening of 29 Sept that followed destruction of four other houses and the mosque. Where the military forces who are guarding the area, were quietly watching the scene and driven the muslim villagers who came out to defense into the mosque.

Other 50 houses of Aindaw village along there those were abandoned by muslim villagers from last year, were also burn down by following morning on 30 Sept.

Beside, Kyauknimaw villagers are still in fear of attacks after a military captain tried to negotiate with the top ten Rakhine leaders who asked Muslim villagers to leave from the village within two weeks.

Sunday, 29 September 2013

Tatmadaw is the biggest Dacoit of Burma

Tatmadaw is the biggest Dacoit of Burma


By Kanbawza Win

Tamadaw, as the marauding Burmese Army is known is the greatest dacoit and robber the country has ever known since it assumes power in 1962.For three quarter of a century, it has been pillaging, killing, raping, robbing, displacing, and robbing the people, encouraged by the neighbouring countries of ASEAN, China and India.

Burma's military leaders have siphoned billions of dollars into offshore accounts in Singapore over the past nine years, and Singapore’s Constructive Engagement Policy,hitherto used to accepting Narco dollars have gleefully accepted it as this is the only way to keep Burma from rising up. The money comes from the Yadana gas project in Burma.

"Some $5 billion[Dh18.3bn] from the Yadana gas pipeline has been stolen from the Burmese people," Mathew Smith, the main author of the Earth Rights International (ERI) report said in an interview. "Rather than contribute to Burma's economic development, the billion-dollar revenues from the project have gone into the pockets of the top generals." 

The money has been put in two Singapore banks, the Overseas Chinese Banking Corp. (OCBC) and the DBS.

Burma earns $150 million (Dh551m) a month from gas exports, and that is set to raise substantially in the future, according to Sean Turnell, an Australian academic at Macquarie University in Sydney and an expert on Burma's banks and economy."Foreign reserves have now just passed $5 billion. Meanwhile, the international community is being berated over its failure to stump up for the government's post-Nargis reconstruction funding proposals,"he said. While the gas revenues are the most substantial part of the regime's schemes, according to diplomats in Rangoon who monitor the economy, they are only the tip of the iceberg."Every deal done with foreign companies involves a cash-back component," a European diplomat familiar with the government's business practices.

"The industry minister, Aung Thaung, always asks foreign businesses which approach him for government approval for 25 per cent of the projects value as a kickback," according to a German entrepreneur who has been dealing with the regime for more than a decade. Most Western businesses baulk at this request, but the Constructive Engagement Policyof Asian firms are much more compliant, seeing it as an acceptable cost of doing business with the generals, as perhaps this is the core of the Asian values.

The Generals managed to keep the $4.83bn off its national budget accounts by using a 30-year-old exchange rate from dollars to the local kyat currency, which produced a sum in kyat that was a mere fraction of the real amount generated, according to ERI. But the cat was let out of the bag when Jelson Garcia, Asia Program Manager with the Banking Information Center (BIC), said World Bank, ADB and International Monetary Fund (IMF) officials informed that Burma’s government held up to $11 billion in several Singaporean bank accounts.

This angers Naypyidaw and reluctantly revealed that a total US $7.6 billion was kept offshore by Burmese state-owned and private banks. But they declined to specify in which offshore locations or clarify exactly how much of these funds were government-owned and how much was in private Generals hands. Something very fishy is going on.
Mentality of the Tatmadaw

The first pre requisite and unavoidable step to democracy and the Federal Genuine Union of Burma is that the evil Tatmadaw must go. The Burmese army must be disintegrated and in its place the Union Army what in Burmese callPyidaungsu Tat must come into being. Essentially it will be the people’s army on the lines of Switzerland and some Asian countries where national service in the army is compulsory for every able bodied men and women get the basic military training annually. There will be no standing army save the trainers and this will save the expenses but in times of emergency and war if there is an aggression on the sovereignty of the country then all the people can be called up to defend the mother land. Just like in Switzerland or even like Singapore if there is an aggression then for example if in a household there is a father, mother and children above 16 years, then all became soldiers as they have been given the military training and specific duties in specific areas. This is what we called people`s army. The unwritten philosophy of the Tatmadaw that "We alone are can do it." must be uprooted once and for all for the sake of the Genuine Union, Pyidaungsu. This, endorse the argument that only the Tatmadaw is patriotic and that that rest are parasites that does not have a pale of patriotism. What an unbelievable and paradoxical phrases as the Tatmadaw is our father and mother are posted throughout the length and breadth of the country and forcing the people to believe, when in fact it is a rapist army, committing unaccountable human rights violations with impunity. Tatmadaw has no regards except the lip service for Pyidaungsu. 

Their thinking is“We the Tatmadaw are the only one imbued with patriotism and that is why we make a supreme sacrifice for the country while the rest of the people are just parasites living on the fruits of our labor.And they don’t harbor a pale of patriotism and as such should be treated as a second citizen”. With this kind of attitude and behavior how can one expect to have the Genuine Pyidaungsu (Union) or Democracy in Burma? Why is it a state within a state? The founder of the, Tatmadaw, our beloved Bogyoke Aung San had clearly depicted in an unambiguous terms that the Tatmadaw has been founded for one man or one party but for the entire country. He clearly rejected the view of those military personnel who harbored the opinion that only they were capable of patriotism. 

The military’s view that they are the only ones capable of patriotism is made explicit, when they change the ‘Resistance Day’as their exclusive ‘Army Day’. This is the day when the rag tag Burmese army went out to battle the retreating Japanese forces. In the Japanese records there was no such thing as the Burmese resistance or the Burmese army in the 2nd World War, let alone the Army Day (Resistance Day) which falls on 27th March when the allies and the British Burma Army has already occupied Mandalay, and the whole of upper Burma. There is no such day as resistance day, not to mention Army Day. It was an outright lie because it was an excuse to justify their grip on the country. The British also have no knowledge of the Burmese resistance. But during this unstable time there were several dacoits, robbers and cut throats roaming the country and claiming themselves to belong to the Burma army and the British administration has to pacify them. This is the Tatmadaw mentality to look good either by hook or by crook. The truth is that most of the Tatmadaw men are ragamuffins, poorly educated and have no future in the globalize and digital world of civilization and as such it soldiers could not survive, as what in Burmese call A Kyan Kone Ga Lone Hsar Chet which means there is no other way or choice and so have to join the army to make both ends meet. If lucky they will be rich in exploiting the people to whatever advantage they get, either by robbery or forced labour or whatever means, at least they have a chance to rape the ethnic women. Hence no doubt they become marauding Tatmadawwhenever they met villagers especially in the ethnic areas.

Why Should Tatmadaw Go?

When General Aung San founded the Tatmadaw he had set the example by resigning from the armed forces to compete in elections and does not compete as a representative of TatmadawHence in the first place historically the Tatamadaw has no place in the making of future the Federal Genuine Union of Burma. 

The second aspect is that the majority, if not every university student starting from 1959 Ava Hall crisis (the army tank destroyed the gates of Ava hall in order to access to the students holed up in the hall) up to this day including the 8888 generation vehemently hated the Burmese army. The Tatmadaw is the ones that destroyed the educations system and the country. Every time there was a crisis they always killed off a number of students. The generations from 1959 up to the 8888 and the upcoming generations of students up to this day vehemently hated the Tatmadaw. This explicitly means that as long as the Tatmadaw is there the animosity and the antagonism will goes on and on between the generations of students and the Tatamadaw. 

And since the future of the country depends on young people and students there is no place for the Tatmadawin the making of future Genuine Union of Burma.

The third aspect is that there must be no single entity that can wield the power of the gun, to eliminate the threat of a military coup. If it is a genuine federal union there must be the province armed forces just like in the old days when we have Karen Rifles, 1st to 4th Chin, 1st to 4th Kachin, 1st Shan, Kayah Yae and so on to protect their own State and Divisions. There must be a Pyidaungsu Tat (Union army) conscripted from all the ethnic and Myanmar forces, to defend the country from outside encroachment.

So, if any particular army be they Myanmar or Non Myanmar make an attempt to seize power by force, then the rest can come and defend the Union (Pyidaungsu), as it had done in the late 40s and early 50s. So viewing from every angle there is absolutely no place for the Tatmadaw in building a better world the future of the Union of Burma.

The fourt aspect is the fact that they want to have 25% of the administrative power in the new administrative structure reveals that Tatmadaw is a power maniacs. The evil Tatmadaw, with the connotations of the Burmese word, Taw (such asNaing Gan Taw depicting a Myanmar empire, if not a chauvinist tone over the ethnic nationalities treating them these ethnic nationalities as if they were the second citizen will have to be eliminated once and for all to get real peace and genuine Pyidaungsu.

The fifth and most crucial aspect is that the Burmese army is not sincere and has no love and good will cetena(apwem) to the people of Burma. The classic example is the Nargis Cyclone when it prevents the international help from reaching the people.

The sixth aspect is that. Tatmadaw is sorely afraid that the people of Burma will be happy and prosperous e.g. when it came to power in 1988 after killing thousands of peaceful demonstrators they opened up the country economically and of course the investors rush in thinking that it was a genuine market economy and the middle class prosper for a couple of years. Tatmadaw knows that with the rise of the middle class the country will be inching towards democracy because it is a matter of time that this middle class will have a say in politics and so it at once reverse the trend, chasing the investors out of the country and destroying the middle class with the result that the country has now became poor at the bottom of the world's ladder. What more Tatmadaw, is still not satisfied and is hindering the works of the NGOs who has come into the country with a sincere heart to help the down trodden and marginalized people and to help the victims of cyclone Nargis.

The seventh aspect is that their inhuman atrocities which they committed to the people of Burma are well recorded not only in the annals of the history of Burma but also by the UN and the international NGOs. They cannot be forgotten and in time even though the people may forgive them of what they have done to them it will be taken as a lesson for any defense organization not to repeat this kind of atrocities which the Tatmadaw has committed to its own people.

The eight and the final aspect of the Tatmadaw is that it is against Buddhism, the hate the genuine monks who sympathize with the peop
On the wholeTatmadawhas a cruel heart, to look on the suffering of the people but not the world community and when these well meaning NGOs came in they prevent them. They even indirectly forced out the Global Fund and only off and on will let the International Red Cross in. the question we can ask ourselves is that are we going to give this Tatmadaw a role, which continues to harbor such mentality? In short if one were to solve the Burmese problem from its root this pugnacious Tatmadawhas no place and must be substitute with a more suitable force.

Achievements of Tatmadaw
Analyzing the achievement of the Tatmadaw we can see that the first achievement of the Tatmadawis that it was able to alienate all the ethnic nationalities, so much so that there is not a single ethnic nationality group that does not rebel against the Tatmadaw. Not to mention the seven major ethnic nationalities of Shan Chin, Kachin, Karen Mon, Karenni, Arakanese and Mon, even the smaller groups as the Pa Oh, Palaung and the proto Burman groups such as Mergui and Tavonian rebelled. This gives the much needed pretext for the Military administration to expand the Tatmadaw Since then the defense budget is more than half of the annual national budget.
The second achievement was that it was able to take down the level of education especially that of the tertiary level. Previously Rangoon University ranks with Oxford and Cambridge University level now the Tatmadaw has brought it down to the lowest level because it construe that once the Burmese youths were properly educated, then they would be in a position to questions the doings of the Tatmadaw. Under the new educational system, English was discarded as the medium of teaching in the high school and subjects like moral and civic were eliminated with the sole purpose of perpetuation of the rule of Tatmadaw, for only then with the uneducated population they would be in a position to manipulate things..
But the third and the most successful aspects of the Tatmadaw was wrecking of the economy of the country knowing full well that it can control the masses, once it controls their stomach and this led to the rice crisis as early as 1965. Restrictions or rather the popular word Sanctions were imposed on the population of Burma to carry the consumer goods from one place to another or to engage in big business. Hence to fuel price hike was done deliberately to control the belly of the people. Now with the quasi military government it grabs the farmers land and all major economic enterprises under cover of cronies.
The fourth achievementwas that it was able to downgrade the moral of the people of Burma, the Burmese Buddhist concept of Anadaw Anada Nga Par better translated as the five jewels of respecting the Lord, the teachings, the monks, the parents and the teachers were discarded. Traditionally these Buddhist teachings had control the moral and the civic lives of the people and the Burmese were considered to be one of the most civilized and hospitable people of the world. In a traditional Buddhist country even some of the teachings and the predictions of Lord Buddha that were too obvious and not compatible with the regime’s policy were prohibited. For example the Kawthala Ein Met Hset Chaut Chet translated as the sixteen predictions of King Kawsala, where the idiots and murderers will become rulers and the educated and respected people will have no place, where abundance will flow only to those who are already rich by foul means but the truthful and the mass of the people will remain desperately poor that coincide with the current situation, were banned. The people watch sadly as these thing began to unfold in front of the eyes.
The fifth achievement is that it had succeeded of making the untruth to be the truth. Of course all the government lies bu “lie-ing the very concept of truth” has become the norm of the Burmese Generals and its Tatmadaw By the 80s with the successive demonetizing of bank notes the people realized that the Burmese army was all the time lying to them. This was proven more when the Burmese army promised to hand over power to the winning party of its own election was never honored up to this day. Hence nobody believes in the Tatmadaw.
TheTatmadaw must go in Burma because the decades-long experience of human rights abuses is deeply rooted in the militarization which has characterized the country since 1962. This militarization has exasperated ethnic tensions, which has, in turn, created a civil war in which human rights abuses will never abate unless the war itself is finally brought to an end. The primary task in Burma, therefore, is the dismantling of the military system and the Tatmadaw and its total control over the economic, social and political life of the country.
Once this military system is removed then the civil war will really come to an end, national reconciliation begun and human rights abuses addressed in a constructive and decisive way. The Defense of the country must be the people`s army like in Singapore or Switzerland and its leader must be in a professional hand just as Bogyoke Aung Sa has chosen General Smith Dun a Karen. To implement this internal administration smoothly there must be a system of check and balance. This explicitly means that a provincial peacekeeping force (call it a police or whatsoever) must be set up in every ethnic State and Divisions to balance the Federal Forces (which must be confined to barracks and come out only when there is an external threat). Only then the country would be in a position to prevent another coup d' tat by another strongman be a Myanmar or a non-Myanmar. The people should enjoy their own natural resources within their own state and must not be exploited by the Central government. Presently the electricity generated atLawpita in Karenni (Kayah) State is used only for Burma proper while the Karenni has to stay in the dark. So also the ruby mines and forest of Shan and Kachin states are exploited by the Generals while all the mines and minerals of Mon and Tennaserim/Tavoy states are geared for the central government leaving the local people poor and desperate and so on. There must be an equitable distribution of the fruits of the natural resources with each state and divisions enjoying its own products. Then and only then there will be peace in Burma.

Now it has been revealed that the Tatmadaw Generals have put billions of dollars in foreign country while the country remains poor and uneducated. Through their crony system it will continue to exploit the country and the people of Burma. This biggest dacoit and robber of the country Tatmadaw will continue to rob the country and commit all sorts of atrocities and moreover it will try to prevent democracy and obstruct genuine union if it is allowed to survive, hence must be ousted once and for all.

End Notes
Please refer to Singapore Sling video
Jagan, Larry; Junta has 'stolen billions' in gas revenue 13-9-2013
http://www.thenational.ae/news/world/asia-pacific/junta-has-stolen-billi...
Yan Naing; Saw, Burma Govt Denies Reports That It Holds $11B in Singaporean Banks Irrawaddy 13-11-2013
Naing Zaw;Htet Central Bank Confirms $7.6B in Burmese Funds Held in Overseas Accounts, Irrawaddy 20-9- 2013
See the speeches of Bogyoke Aung San
Aung; Tetoe From the People’s Army to the Enemy of the People” Mizzima News 29th-3-09
Win, Kanbawza; Policy Paper : Blue Print for Burma Sun, 2006-09-24 02:21 Internet publication
Win, Kanbawza; Policy Paper Blue Print for Burma Sun, 2006-09-24 02:21 Internet publication
There are seven types of sanctions placed on the entire population of Burma
Burma Issues: Human Abuse in Burma and Possible Solutions April, 1993
Currently Burma has 15 billionaires and in the next 10 years will increase to 40 billionaires while the mass of the people will remain poor.
Source- Asian Tribune -

"ANTI-MUSLIM VIOLENCE BREWING IN SANDOWAY OR THANDWE URGENT URGENT URGENT URGENT

Credit:Maung Zarni 

ACTION NEEDED: ban 969 and the RNDP (Rakhine Nationality Development Party).

Plans are underway to burn Muslim neighborhoods in Sandoway or Than-dwe, with families inside after 9 pm local time - any day.

There has been a 9pm - 4 am curfew known as "Muslim Curfew" because non-Muslims are largely unaffected by the curew. Authorities only enforce the curfew against the Muslim, with 6-month prison sentence.

here is a sequence of events since yesterday:

28 Sept: a 969-follower and a member of the Rakhine Nationality Development Party chaired by Vet Aung Maung (MP from Ramree based in Naypyidaw) who works as a motorcycle taxi-driver parked his motorcycle in front of a shop owned by a Karman Muslim named Haji U Kyaw San Hla.

The shop-owner told off the taxi-driver as the cycle was blocking the shop's loading area for the disel engines for motorboats.

the 969 and RNDP member taxi-driver threatened to destroy the shop, mobilizing his network, and came around with 10+bikers and threw stones at the shop and repeated the threats of violence against the Karman muslim shopkepper U Kyaw San Hla.

The Sandwe police summoned the Muslim shopowner and asked him to sign a paper pledging not to behave 'rudely' again and was released him on the signed pledge.

Already about 200-strong mob came to to the police station, where Muslim shop owner was being questioned and lectured by the police.

Nothing happened yesterday.

29 Sept - Sunday:

at 2 pm, several thousand-strong 969 and RNDP crowd went to the 2-story wooden house/residence of Chairman of the local Karman Muslim Organization, named Haji U Khin Maung Latt. His house was located right across from Sandoway/Thandwe City Hall.

they threw petrol bombs and burned the house down completely.

Lon-htein, a hybrid of military and riot police came, and so did the Army troops to the city hall area where Haji U Khin Maung Latt's house was still on fire.

They fired warning shots into the air, but didn't stop the mob from their arson attacks.

The troops also blocked any road leading to the burning house and the City Hall so that no Muslim residents from other parts of the town could enter the area to offer any assistance or help put out the fire.
The family escaped the attack.

Sandoway's sole fire engine couldn't do anything to extinguish the fire, which burned the wooden house to the ground.

============================
Here is demographic and political info:

Sandoway's population is made up of Burmanized Rakhine, mixed Rakhine-Bama familes, Karman muslims, etc. there have been no religious conflicts or communal conflicts among these residents. in terms of Muslim-Buddhist make-up, it's about half and half.
Karman Muslims are, even by 1982 Citizenship Act and other associated laws, recognized as 'Taiyin-thar' or ethnic natives of Burma. Many maintain close ties with the authorities.

However, at the time of this crisis, the authorities show no interest in or signs of protecting the Karman muslims from the 969 and the ultra-nationalists/neo-Nazi Rakhine Nationalities Development Party (RNDP), the second largest party in Rakhine representing the Rakhines, after the ruling USDP.

=============================

the surrounding areas are small settlements and coastal villages where many Rakhine, Bama and other laborers work in the fishing industry.

=============================

Many of these laborers from places as far as GWA and other migrant labor settlements are said to be paid and bused into Sandoway by the 969 and RNDP.

==============================

Key anti-Muslim leaders (969 and RNDP are very close and there are overlapping personalities who are connected to both Nazi campaigns):

1) a key leader of the 969 - is a Karman convert to Buddhism named Mr Tun Thant Kyaw

2) several Bama or Burmese Buddhists who are very active leaders and funders of the anti-Muslim campaign

a) Mr Win Ko Lay - a diesel oil seller (for the fishing and other boats)
b) Mr Thein Win,the owner of a pharmacy named U Waziya
c) Mr Tu Tu, owner of Aung Myan Mar bus/taxi station

they are funding and managing the campaign.

They are very active in the ultra-nationalist campaign of the Rakhine party (RNDP Aye Maung's party).

MONKS:

there are 969 monk leaders:

1) Nyaung Bin Thar Monastery Abbot
2) Pearl Monastery abbot

The muslims, karmans and others, feel the State and its organizations are NOT going to protect them in the likely event of a 969/RNDP attacks, arson and loot.

They want the truths out to the world.

The least you can do is spread the word, in hopes that truth may wake the conscience of some in this world who might be in a position to pressurize the Burmese regime into banning both the RNDP and 969 and to pressure Thein Sein Government to protect the Muslims."

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Attempts and Atrocities by Myanmar’s Military to Conceal a Rape Crime against a Rohingya Girl

Credit: Reports by Aung Aung (@aungaungsittwe) and Saman Leesanee
Compiled by M.S. Anwar
RvisionTV.com | September 29, 2013
Ming-Byaa Township, Arakan State:
27th September, 2013
1) Around 2PM on 27th Septemeber 2013, two Myanmar military raped a 18-year-old Rohingya girl named Zaitun Bahar @Gulubi daughter of Habibullah at the village of Sangyi Pyin in Min-Byaa Township, Arakan state.
2) Around 3PM of the day, the same Myanmar military personnel arrested innocent Rohingya named Ba Kyaw @Ahmed Sayed S/o Mohammed Amin (Age 27) from the same village.
3) At 3:30PM, Military called up the girl’s parents to their camp and forced them to say that Ba Kyaw had raped their daughter. The military officer tortured Ba Kyaw and forced his family to pay a ramsom amount, Kyat 800,000, to let him be released. However, despite the extortion of humungous amount of money, the military have not freed Ba Kyaw yet.
Then, the military paid Kyat 500,000 to the girl’s parents and treatened not to tell anyone who the actual rapists were. They threatened the girl’s parents “if you tell the truth, your family will be in danger.”
4) Some Rohingyas in the village reported the incident to their friends in other parts of the country. At 5PM of the day, some military personnel raided the village and attempted to arrest 7 Rohingya men suspected for reporting the case. When the men fled, the military beat up their family members and threatened to punish anyone who would try to report the case to anyone.
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Ming-Byaa Township, Arakan State:
28th September, 2013
1) At 3PM on 28th September 2013, the above-mentioned military arrested two more Rohingyas, Abdullah (Age 22) and Ali Ahmed (Age 35), from the village. They started torturing the two Rohingyas to reveal the names of the people who had reported on the rape case.
2) And Ali Ahmed (Age 35) mentioned above DIED at around 7PM on 28th Septemebr 2013 due to the tortures by the military.
3) Military started raiding house by house in the said village to find out the people who reported the rape case. Therefore, the lives of the few people who have mobile phones are facing life-threatening danger.
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Ming-Byaa Township, Arakan State:
29th September, 2013
1) At 1AM today (i.e. on 29th September 2013), the military and Rakhine Security Force broke down the bridge to the village of Sangyi Pyin, Min-Byaa to prevent anyone from going to the village. They blocked the village. It looks like they are going to commit massacres of innocent Rohingya villagers.
2) At 2PM of the day, a Rakhine Terror Network in the township robbed Kyat 400,000 from Rohingyas’ houses at the village of Paikthay, Min-Byaa Township. Then, the robbed money was said to have been donated to the monastery of Dhamma-Yun in the township. Similar things have been happening in the township since June 2012.
3)At 3:30PM today, two from the village of Paikthay, one from Rohingyas from the village of Sandali Fara and another from the village of Thaddar (Sic) were on their way to the neighboring villages in order to buy some food rations. Meanwhile, the Rakhine Terror Network attacked them and robbed their money. They are critically injured now. Two of them are: 1) Hussain (Age 28) from the village of Paikthay and 2) Azizurrahman (age 25) from the village of Thaddar (sic). The other two are from the village of Sandali and Paikthay respectively.
————————————-
Epilogue
Min-Bya, Mrauk-U, Mye-Bun, Thandwe, Rambre are a few
ships where Rohingya and Kaman people are minorities and persecuted like nowhere else. Yet, the atrocities against Muslims in these township have largely unknown to the world. Hardly any international observer or reporter is given access to these regions. On top of that, Rohingya and Kaman community in the townnships have been systematically blocked and being starved to death. These are some of the modern-day silent-killing fields.
Min Bya Township (Photo: Google Map)
Min Bya Township (Photo: Google Map)

please, read the following News of Burma(Myanmar)./SHABU DIN ,SISTTWE.

 
A LETTER OF SHABU DEEN FROM SISTTWE.
 Assalamu alaikum worahmotullah
Brothers and sisters,
please, read the following News of Burma(Myanmar).

Dear sir or madam, 
I am carrying on social welfare activities among the Rohingya community but we do not have the project nor the title so far. We are in the village like being in the prison. And our village remained in Sittwe downtown ,Rakhine State after most of the villages had been burnt by the rakhinese and notorious security police last year. We are not allowed to move from one village to another village. If the security find out that ,the police (Lon Htin) will put the innocent rohingya Muslim behind the bar. 

 1.We don't get enough ration as WFP is not allowed to provide rations to us, and the medical assistance as well as there are no registered IDP camps even if there are IDPs in our quarter.There has been 1 year and 4months that we are blocked and do not receive a single seed of rice from Myanmar government. But some Muslim donors provide rations to us but it is not enough to cover for all the people here.

 Many of us need to stay being starved like having just one time of poor meal at 3:30PM in the middle of the day, in order to cover both lunch and dinner for the whole day. Even if we want to have more we cannot afford.

 2.No one has job as we cannot go out to work from our village. Most of we were merchants, making fortune in the Sittwe Municipal market before the one side communal violence. And there are 145 shops which belongs to rohingya muslims, But all of those are closed. We are running our lives by selling the properties we had left for instant gold, furniture set(chair,table,bed....etc) and house stuffs. 
3.We are not allowed to go to buy food from the market, so One of the truck from our village goes to Dabaing market which is in the country side to buy food for the whole village twice a week with the security police by giving 1 drum of diesel(1 drum of diesel=160000 kyats=160$) to the state ministry office

4. When we give money to the police or military to buy important medicines for the Emergency patients, they disappeared with the money. When we informed to the police or military incharge, they reply that the one who took the money from us was transferred. Sometimes they buy us the things being double price or more than double price. When we give money to them to buy 10 items of goods, they just buy 7 items being double price and the rest of 3 items were missing...what they say to us... The doctors are not allowed to enter to give treatment to us. 

The doctors without borders entered in our quarter to give medical assistance Monday and Thursday twice a week, since a couple week ago, but they don't get proper permission from the State minister to do so.

 If we have to admit to the hospital, we need to give 80000 kyats=80$ for the security only to accompany the patients to the sittwe general hospital. If we are almost die because of illness, we need to go to Dabaing clinic in the country side muslim populated area where all the IDP camps are, by giving 20000 kyats=20$ to the police security for a patient. Unless we give 20000 kyats(20 dollars),we are not allowed to go to the countryside.

 If we don't go to countryside ,we cannot be hospitalized as the ICRC cars are allowed to pick up the patients only from countryside like Thet Kay Pyin,Baw Du Fa,Da Baing village except our restricted quarter. But very few people can manage it; most of the people are died without having medical assistance.

 At night on 19.9.13,one of the pregnant women died of having complicated delivery with lower blood pressure after delivering her baby as lacking of medical assistance in Aung Min Gla quarter. And another one died of starving, called (U Rofique,46yrs)the household leader of the family that the whole family were being starved for several days from Kone Dan quarter last week.  

We need more assistance in terms of medical, livelihood, ration. We are welcome if anyone can directly provide us those sort of assistance for our lives. The government always mention to leave this Aung Min Gla Quarter and join IDP camps then we can have WFP ration there, otherwise, we will not have ration from any side in our quarter. The government are tactfully dispelling us from our quarter Sittwe township, Rakhine state. 

  Recently, the Rakhine state minister officially declared that all the displaced people from Aung Min Galar quarter need to leave the quarter and they must join the camps in Baw Du Fa , Oon Daw Gyi camps to get shelter there in sittwe township from next month on. If they refuse to do so, the government will block providing ration which are donated by the Muslim donors. And the village leaders confiscated all the ration lists from the IDPs, in order not to have ration in Aung Min Galar with all the connected muslim quarters in the future. Eventually, the IDPs from Aung Min Galar and the rest connected muslims quarters, needed to go to the countryside to join the camps. After 3 days of that they had arrived in Thet Kay Pyin camps ,they received a mug and jerry can for water from WFP.And till now they haven’t received anything else like ration from anyone. 

They now are begging from the others to have meal especially for the children. Soon or later all of the rohingya muslim from Myanmar will become begger. 

 The students could study in any school they want but they now cannot move anywhere, so we had a discussion about the students’ lives here with the state education minister, so he allowed us to run the Primary School for our students in our quarter. There are now 1068 of students from Kindergarten to 6 th standard studying inside the quarter. And we couldn’t manage for the students from 7th standard to the matriculated from our quarter. There is no way for the rohingya university students to go and join the sittwe university as we don’t have lives security there.

 If one of the university wants to study or one of the patients needs to go from Rakhine state to elsewhere like Yangon, he or she needs to pay 2500000 kyats (2500$) to the state immigration minister.

There were 1168 of total households and 6233 of total people and then 699 of displaced people in our quarter and from the connected muslim quarters,according to the July-2013 data. There were some rohingya muslims shifted by forced of the Rakhine Minister from Aung Min Galar to the countryside like Thet Kay Pyin camps. We are very much concerned about any kinds of conflict ahead in the future. The governments are systematically killing us as if they cannot afford to stop these kind of bloody killings in Myanmar and the threat is still on going in Rakhine state. 


1. Continued periodic outbreaks of organized violence, regularly accompanied by either inaction or participation by government security forces, and agents provocateurs of unknown government affiliation;
2. An attempt by local governments within Rakhine to limit Rohingya reproduction by enforcing a two-child limit; 

3. A proposed ban on interfaith marriage is supported by extreme nationalist Buddhist monks and is being considered as legislation; 

4. The continued denial of aid to squalid camps and continuing movement restrictions, expropriation, displacement, and ghettoization of Rohingya; 

5. An attempt to perform a census of Rohingya, violently coercing them to register as “Bengali,” which may facilitate the creation of “death lists”; 

6. The continuing arrest of political prisoners despite presidential assurances to the contrary; 

7. Official government support for the ultra-nationalist 969 movement, which alienates Muslims and casts them as a threat; 

8. Burmese president Thein Sein’s proposed plan to resettle the Rohingya population abroad;
9. Thein Sein’s proclamation to continue denying citizenship to the Rohingya; 

10. The official denial of the existence of the Rohingya and institutionalized usage of hate speech even among moderates; and 

11. The silence of political moderates on the plight of the Rohingya.

12.The Myanmar govermentr openly allow the rakhinese to do smuggling from Myanmar to Bangladesh.

So, wewould like to ask for urgent UN protection in Myanmar. With kind regards
CREDID-SHABU DIN

Friday, 27 September 2013

UN calls on Burma to urgently address Rohingya grievances

UN calls on Burma to urgently address Rohingya grievances

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said on Thursday there's much to be done to ensure accountability for the perpetrators of crimes against Muslim Rohingyas in Burma. (Reuters) UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said on Thursday there's much to be done to ensure accountability for the perpetrators of crimes against Muslim Rohingyas in Burma. (Reuters)
A group of Western and Asian governments are lauding Burma’s progress toward democracy but warning outbreaks of communal violence could undermine the reforms.
Foreign ministers meeting Thursday on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly said in a statement that Burma urgently needs to address the political and economic grievances of the Rohingyas, including the question of their citizenship.

The Rohingyas are a minority Muslim group that has suffered badly in sectarian clashes over the past year with majority Buddhists. Oftentimes, security forces have stood by.
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon said there’s much to be done to ensure accountability for the perpetrators.

In a sign of the shifting international attitudes toward Burma, the former pariah nation was for the first time invited to the “Group of Friends on Myanmar/Burma” meeting.
Representing the British government at the annual meeting of the Group of Friends of Burma at the UN General Assembly on 26 September, FCO Minister of State for Asia Hugo Swire said, “We welcome the continued engagement of the UN and its member states in Burma to help assist the country through the challenges of transition to democracy. This was an important opportunity to share that message and to welcome continued progress in Burma. We were pleased that the Burmese government attended the Group of Friends forum for the first time, evidence that they are also willing to engage.

“I stressed the importance of continued action to keep reforms on track, particularly the need to tackle violence and discrimination against Muslims and other religious minorities, to maintain progress towards nationwide peace, and to address the plight of the Rohingya community. I hope the government will support the need to reform the Constitution, a necessary undertaking if the 2015 elections are to be seen as credible.”

Source:DVB

Thursday, 26 September 2013

Breakingnews > Bangkok Post 'Elders' urge action on Myanmar unrest

Breakingnews > Bangkok Post
 Published: 26 Sep 2013 at 15.2o

Former world leaders led by ex-US president Jimmy Carter appealed Thursday for an end to impunity over a wave of anti-Muslim attacks in Myanmar.

The call came at the end of a three-day visit to the formerly military-ruled country by the group - known as "The Elders" - for talks with reformist President Thein Sein, religious leaders and civil society groups.

"The Elders call for an end to impunity for the perpetrators of violence against the Muslim community and for the meaningful realisation of the right to freedom of religion," they said in a statement.

Gro Harlem Brundtland, former prime minister of Norway and deputy chair of The Elders, said it could take decades to overcome "the ingrained prejudices promoted by extremist voices in parts of the country".

Violence against minority Muslims in the western state of Rakhine should "be halted as a priority," she said.

"No one can afford to ignore these senseless, destructive, repeated acts of brutality."
Religious violence - mostly targeting Muslims - has exposed deep rifts in Buddhist-majority Myanmar, casting a shadow over widely praised political reforms since military rule ended in 2011.

Around 250 people have been killed and more than 140,000 left homeless in several outbreaks of violence since June 2012.
Clashes in Rakhine state last year left about 200 people dead, mostly Rohingya Muslims who are denied citizenship by Myanmar.
Rights groups have accused Myanmar security forces of complicity in the violence, while anti-Muslim riots elsewhere in the country have appeared well organised.
The Elders - founded by former South African president Nelson Mandela in 2007 - also appealed for an end to the country's conflicts between the military and ethnic-minority rebels, and for the release of all remaining political prisoners.
"We were impressed by the pace with which reforms are proceeding. Myanmar is becoming a more open society," Carter said.
"The release of political prisoners is particularly encouraging. We trust there will be no political prisoners by the end of the year, as the president has pledged," he added.

"Rohingya still worries" /Turkish president meets Hollande, Ban in New York


Updating: 11:07, 25 September 2013 Wednesday
Turkish president meets Hollande, Ban in New York

Turkish president meets Hollande, Ban in New York
Turkish President Abdullah Gul met on Tuesday with French President Francois Hollande and attended a lunch hosted by UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon in New York, where the 68th session of the UN General Assembly is being held


World Bulletin/News Desk

Turkish President Abdullah Gul held talks with French President Francois Hollande in New York on the latest develeopments in Syria and Turkey's EU bid process, on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly session.

The two presidents stressed the need of the deal on destroying the chemical weapons in Syria should be tranformed into UN Security Council resolution and confirmed maintanence of existing cooperation on solving the crisis in Syria.
On Turkey's EU bid, Gul said that Turkey attached big importance to opening new chapters on accession negotiation while Hollande expressed France's support to Turkey's EU process.
French president also noted that he plans to pay a visit to Turkey in the coming days, which Gul stated would enhance relations between the two countries.

After delivering a speech at UN session on sustainable developments, Turkish President Gul also attended a lunch hosted by UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and had conversation with US President Barack Obama during the lunch.

Then, Gul hosted a reception in Turkevi [a Turkish center] in New York, due to Turkey's candidacy for non-permanent membership in the UN Security Council for the period of 2015-2016.

Many heads of states including Palestinian President Mahmod Abbas, Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili and Somali President Hasan Sheikh Mohamoud, ambassadors and representatives including Arab League-United Nations envoy Lakhdar Brahimi took part in the reception.

Turkish FM's diplomacy traffic

Meanwhile, Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu, who is in New York to attend UN General Assembly 68th session, participated Tuesday in several bilateral, trilateral meetings and initiatives that Turkey takes part in.
Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu has met Lakhdar Brahimi, joint Special Representative of the UN and the League of Arab States for Syria in New York.
Diplomatic sources said, during the meeting, Davutoglu pointed out that there should be fast and lasting solution meeting the expectations of Syrian public. 

Davutoglu told Brahimi that gathering of the Second Geneva Conference was an unavodiable necessity to put forth the parameters and objectives of the process, while Brahimi briefed Davutoglu about the preparations for the Geneva II.
Davutoglu participated in several regional and global initiatives besides his bilateral meetings.

During the trilateral meeting among foreign ministers of Turkey, Serbia and Bosnia Herzegovina, sources said that the parties agreed on widening the scope of their cooperation.

The ministers exchanged views about the benefits of the Trilateral Business Forum that would be convened next year in Sarajevo, emphasizing that the initiative created a positive dynamic in the region instead of tension.

"Rohingya still worries" 

Davutoglu also participated in the Organization for Islamic Cooperation's (OIC) Rohingya Contact Group meeting and highlighted that the Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar were still in a worrisome situation which needed to be adressed by the OIC continuously and more efficiently.

Besides Davutoglu attended Bosnia Herzegovina Contact Group and noted that despite all developments, the situation in Bosnia Herzegovina was still fragile, therefore called on the OIC to support the country in all terms

Wednesday, 25 September 2013

Foreign Affairs Minister Urges OIC to Work Dynamically in Rohingya Issue






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Foreign Affairs Minister Marty Natalegawa has urged the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) to play a more constructive role in the resolution of the Rohingya people`s issue in Myanmar.

“The OIC must level its approach towards finding a solution for the Rohingya people. It has been repeatedly voicing strong statements, while Indonesia has been focusing more on action and the results emerging thereafter,” the minister pointed out in a written statement to Antara on Wednesday.

Natalegawa added that Indonesia, Malaysia and Brunei Darussalam will try to urge the OIC to play a more constructive and concrete role in the settlement of Rohingya issue, including problems related to sending humanitarian aid to the Rohingya people, their economic development and reaching a national reconciliation between the conflicted parties in Myanmar.

Indonesia has actively engaged with the Rohingya issue by approaching both the Myanmar government and the displaced Rohingya people living in the country`s Rakhine province. Indonesia has also been raising the subject at various international meets, such as at the U.N., ASEAN and OIC forums.

Ministers of the OIC members had also conducted a meeting on the sidelines of U.N. General Assembly Meeting on Sept. 24.

Violence had erupted in Myanmar`s Rakhine state following the rape and murder of a young woman by three youths from the Yanbye township on May 28, which had resulted in the subsequent killing of 10 passengers aboard a bus in the Taungup township on June 3. In the former case, the victim was a Rakhine Buddhist female, while in the latter incident, the victims were Muslim men.

Following the two incidents, riots had broken out in the Sittway, Maungtaw and Buthidaung townships. The rioters had torched and destroyed houses, shops and guest houses and also committed murders.

The riots had caused the death of 77 people in both communities, while 109 were injured. A total of 4,822 houses, 17 mosques, 15 monasteries, and three schools were burnt to the ground.

The unrest has severely affected both the Rohingya and Rakhine ethnic groups, but human rights groups have accused the Myanmar police and soldiers of taking action only against the Rohingya Muslims after the riots.
The Myanmar government is yet to acknowledge the Rohingya people as citizens of the country.
Credit: Antara news

Burma Refuses To Sign Sexual Violence Declaration

source:from Maung Zarni's FB
On Tuesday 24th September 
115 countries signed a new declaration of commitment to end sexual violence in conflict. Despite high level lobbying by the British government, the government of Burma failed to support the declaration.
The declaration of commitment to end sexual violence in conflict was launched by British Foreign Secretary William Hague and Zainab Hawa Bangura, Special Representative of the Secretary-General on Sexual Violence in Conflict, at the United Nations in New York.

The declaration contains practical and political commitments to end impunity, promote accountability, and provide justice and safety for victims of sexual violence in conflicts.

The failure of Burma’s President Thein Sein to support the declaration to stop sexual violence in conflict demonstrates a lack of willingness to address the issue of sexual violence in conflict in Burma. Since Thein Sein became President, there has been renewed conflict in Kachin State and Shan State, and Burma Campaign UK has received an increased number of reports of rape and sexual violence by the Burmese Army. No action has been taken to end impunity for rape by the Burmese Army, and Thein Sein and his government do not even acknowledge that such abuses even take place.

The failure of Burma to sign the declaration also calls into question the effectiveness of British government policy on Burma. Since reforms began in Burma, the British government has performed a dramatic and premature u-turn on Burma policy, no longer supporting strong pressure as a means to promote human rights, and instead arguing that building a closer relationship with the government of Burma would give it more influence to promote human rights. This policy has demonstrably failed.

Foreign Office Minister Hugo Swire asked for Burmese government participation in the Preventing Sexual Violence Initiative when he visited Burma in December 2012. Foreign Secretary William Hague also requested President Thein Sein to participate when Thein Sein visited the UK in July 2013. The request has been ignored.

“When it comes to Burma and the issue of sexual violence, William Hague should understand by now who he is dealing with, and demand Thein Sein to fully commit to an end to rape and sexual violence”, said Zoya Phan, Campaigns Manager at Burma Campaign UK. “The use of rape and sexual violence in conflict in Burma must be stopped. If Thein Sein refuses to co-operate, then international legal action should be taken to prevent these crimes. For many ethnic women, rape by Burmese Army soldiers is a daily fear, and justice seems to be just a distant dream”.

There can never be a genuine peace in the country if women and girls continue to suffer rape and sexual violence by government forces, and are denied their rights and security.

Note to Editor: The Declaration of Commitment to end Sexual Violence in Conflict was launched at the UN, New York, at an event attended by The Rt Hon William Hague MP, Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs & Zainab Hawa Bangura, Special Representative of the Secretary-General on Sexual Violence in Conflict. The text and more information is available here: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/113-countries-pledge-action-to-end-sexual-violence-in-conflict-timetoact
(Note: since the FCO released this statement two more countries signed the declaration, bringing the total to 115)

Statement by the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum on the Situation of the Rohingya in Burma

September 24, 2013
United States Holocaust Memorial Museum interior courtesy of Wikimedia Commons
The Continuing Importance of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum
 

Statement by the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum on the Situation of the Rohingya in Burma


Contact
September 24, 2013
Washington, DC—The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum today expressed its deep concern about the worsening situation of the Rohingya in Burma, also known as Myanmar.

Long considered one of the world’s most persecuted peoples, the Muslim Rohingya have no legal status in Burma and face severe discrimination, abuse, and escalating violence. Last year, violent attacks, fanned by a campaign of virulent anti-Muslim hate speech that continues today, destroyed numerous Rohingya communities and displaced well more than 100,000 people. Today, the Rohingya in Burma are forcibly isolated, cut off from nearly all goods and services and unable to provide for themselves. According to the United Nations, crimes against humanity have been and continue to be perpetrated against the Rohingya. Their treatment, combined with statements by government, political, and religious figures indicate that the Rohingya are being subjected to ethnic cleansing.

While the Burmese government has signaled its intention to alleviate the plight of the Rohingya, little has been done to address the fundamental causes of their suffering. Burma’s democracy movement has largely been silent about the treatment of the Rohingya.

“As an institution dedicated to preserving the history of the Holocaust and to preventing genocide and mass atrocities, the Museum is deeply concerned about the increasing concentration and segregation of the Rohingya and the escalation of hate speech and violence targeting Rohingya and Muslims generally in Burma,” said Michael Chertoff, former secretary of Homeland Security and chairman of the Museum’s Committee on Conscience, which oversees the Center for the Prevention of Genocide. “The Museum welcomes recent commitments by the Burmese government to assure the security and rights of all people in Burma and calls upon the international community to assist Burma in protecting its populations from crimes against humanity and ethnic cleansing.”

Background
The Rohingya are a Muslim minority in Rakhine (also called Arakan) State, which borders Bangladesh and has a Buddhist majority that is ethnically Rakhine. Although Rohingya have resided in Arakan for at least several centuries, Burma’s 1982 citizenship law does not include them among the country’s officially recognized ethnic groups, effectively denying them any right to citizenship. The Burmese government classifies the approximately 800,000 Rohingya as “Bengalis” and insists that they are illegal immigrants from Bangladesh. Since Burma’s independence from Britain in 1948, the Rohingya have been subjected to periodic campaigns of violence and continue to face various forms of official and unofficial persecution, including:

  • Limits on the right to marry and bear children. Rohingya must obtain official permission to marry and in some areas have been prohibited from having more than two children.  As a result, some 60,000 Rohingya children born in violation of these restrictions cannot be registered and are thus ineligible for all government services, including education.
  •  
  • Limits on movement. Rohingya must obtain official permission to travel even to a neighboring village. Applications for travel permits require long waits, payment of fees and bribes, and intrusive scrutiny. The travel restrictions effectively deny the Rohingya access to post-primary education, markets, employment opportunities, and health care.
  •  
  • Forced labor. Rohingya in northern Rakhine State have regularly been required to work without pay for government and military authorities. Children frequently perform this labor, which is required exclusively of the Rohingya in Rakhine State.
  •  
  • Denial of due process. Rohingya are routinely subjected to confiscation of property, arbitrary arrest and detention, physical and sexual violence, and even torture at the hands of authorities.
  •  
  • Segregation. Rohingya are barred from the teaching, medical, and engineering professions.  Many health care facilities will not treat them and few businesses will hire them other than for manual labor.
Rakhine State is one of Burma’s poorest states, and the Rakhine ethnic group also has long suffered from economic discrimination and cultural repression by the Burmese majority and central government.  As Buddhists and an officially recognized minority, however, the Rakhine enjoy rights and opportunities denied to the Rohingya, who are universally reviled in Burma. Poverty exacerbates Rakhine animosities toward the Rohingya, whom the Rakhine view as alien competitors for scarce resources. These animosities erupted into communal violence between Rohingya and Rakhine between June and October 2012 that left hundreds dead and more than 140,000 displaced, the vast majority Rohingya. The deadliest violence consisted of Rakhine attacks against Rohingya communities. According to both Rakhine and Rohingya witnesses, Buddhist monks and local Rakhine politicians incited and led many of the attacks, with state security forces failing or refusing to stop the violence and sometimes participating in it. The violence forced the Rohingya to abandon many of their communities, where the government razed anything left standing after the attacks.

The displaced Rohingya now live in official and unofficial internally displaced persons (IDP) camps under conditions that the UN emergency relief coordinator has called among the worst she has ever seen.  Humanitarian aid workers frequently have been prevented from accessing these camps. 

Citing the need to maintain security, Burmese officials have essentially imprisoned much of the Rohingya population, using barbed wire and barricades to cordon off not only those in the camps but also another 36,000 in still extant Rohingya communities. Denied permission to exit, the inhabitants cannot access markets, schools, or health care facilities and cannot pursue their livelihoods. A recent UN report cited "alarming rates of severe acute malnutrition" in the camps. In June, the UN special rapporteur on the human rights situation in Burma, Tom├ís Ojea Quintana, cited “credible allegations that widespread and systematic human rights violations by state officials targeted against the Rohingya and wider Muslim populations have occurred and are continuing in Rakhine State.”

There have been some positive, if mixed, developments. Since the spring, the central and local governments have taken significant steps to improve humanitarian access and provide safer shelter to the displaced ahead of the monsoon season. These efforts, however, included a registration drive that required Rohingya to identify themselves as “Bengali,” which many viewed as forcing them to accede to illegal status. In May, the government commission established to investigate last year’s violence—which had no Rohingya members—called for general measures to improve communal relations in Rakhine State and to hold those responsible for the violence accountable, but it also recommended birth control measures for the “Bengalis.” In response, local officials in Rakhine State announced stepped-up enforcement of the two-child limit for Rohingya. Although Burma’s minister of immigration and population originally praised this measure, both he and the chief minister of Rakhine State recently assured Special Rapporteur Ojea Quintana that no such policy is in force. Meanwhile, however, politicians and monks in Rakhine State have openly called for ethnic cleansing of the Rohingya. 

While Burma’s president, Thein Sein, has pledged to seek regularization of the Rohingya’s legal status, he also insists that there is no need to change the 1982 citizenship law, under which it is practically impossible for most Rohingya to obtain citizenship. In July, the central government abolished the notoriously abusive NaSaKa border security force in Rakhine State, but the police forces that replaced it reportedly are continuing many abusive practices targeting the Rohingya. In August, Rakhine authorities prosecuted six Rakhines for murdering Rohingya bus passengers at the start of the violence in June 2012, but, thus far, the majority of the persons prosecuted for last year’s violence have been Rohingya, despite the fact that Rohingya make up the vast majority of the victims.

This lack of accountability has likely contributed to the outpouring of anti-Muslim hate speech that since March has been accompanied by sporadic violence targeting Muslim Burmese citizens residing in other parts of the country. While Buddhist monks have been among the most visible instigators, there is ample evidence of security forces’ complicity in the violence, which has claimed scores of lives and destroyed thousands of properties. The Buddhist “969” movement uses anti-Muslim hate speech and intimidation to force boycotts of Muslim businesses and is now seeking to criminalize marriage between Muslim men and Buddhist women. The escalating segregation and discrimination against Burma’s Muslims, who comprise about five percent of the population, leave them in well-founded fear for their safety and livelihoods.

About the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum

A living memorial to the Holocaust, the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum seeks to inspire citizens and leaders worldwide to confront hatred, prevent genocide, and promote human dignity. The mandate of its Committee on Conscience is to alert the national conscience, influence policy makers, and stimulate worldwide action to prevent acts of genocide and related crimes against humanity. The Committee oversees the work of the Center for the Prevention of Genocide (CPG), which undertakes a wide range of activities to make the prevention of genocide and related crimes against humanity a national and international priority.

In July, the Museum hosted the release of a report co-sponsored by the CPG on the Responsibility to Protect. Adopted in 2005 by all UN member states, including Burma, the doctrine of Responsibility to Protect assigns to every state the responsibility to protect its populations from genocide, war crimes, ethnic cleansing, and crimes against humanity. It also charges the international community with the duty to assist states in fulfilling their responsibility to protect their populations from such crimes.

“Genocide and group-targeted mass violence cause devastation in the countries where they occur and threaten international security as well,” said Chertoff. “The Burmese people have been making impressive progress in their quest for greater freedom and prosperity. The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum urges them to recognize that sectarian and ethnic hatred and violence can undo this progress and bring suffering to them all. Where some are persecuted, no one’s liberty can be secure.