THE EMERGENCE OF ETHNIC ROHINGYAS


The term Rohingya is derived from the word Rohai or Roshangee, a terminology pervered to Rohingya. Rohai and Roshangee are terms denoting the Muslim people inhabiting in the old Arakan (Rohan/Roshang/ Roang). It is probably the corruption of Arabic term Raham (blessing) or Raham Borri meaning the land of God’s blessings.

The word Rahma to Rahmi-Rahmia-Rahingya to Rohingya, which denotes honest, dutiful, pitiful or kind hearted to others.

But there is another historical defination of Rohingya. That is Rohingya which derived from the Magh language “Rwa-haung-gya-kyia”. The Magh used to call the Pathan army of General Wali Khan and General Sandi Khan, who came to restore the throne to Narameikhia, as “Rwa-haung-gya-kyia”- which was changed time to time – as Rwahingyia – Rohingya-which denotes as brave as tiger. As the Pathans army defeated the

Mon-Talaing army, the Rakhine Maghs used to call the Pathan as brave as tiger. They mixed with the Arab descendants for centuries and become Rohingyas.

“Arakan, infect, a continuation of the Chittagong plain was neither purely a Burmese nor an Indian territory till the 18th century of the Christian era. Chiefly for its location, it was not only remained independent for the most part of history, but endeavoured to expand its territory in the surrounding tracts whenever opportunity came and Chittagong was the first to be the victim of the territorial ambition of the Arakanese monarchs.

…… Shut off from Burma by a hill range, it is located far away from the Indian capitals. The relation between Chittagong and Arakan is influenced by geographical, ethnological, cultural and historical considerations, from about 1580 A.D. nearly a century, Chittagong was under almost uninterrupted Arakanese rule which is undoubtedly an important period marked by momentous events.

“There were Moors, Moghuls and Pathans also in Arakan…. Thus, the Muslim population of Arakan consisted roughly of four categories, namely, the Bangalee, other Indian, Afro-Asian and native. Among these four categories of Muslims the Bengali Muslims formed the largest part of the total Muslim population of Arakan.”

The Arabs and Pathans army are founded the original nucleus of the Rohingyas in Arakan, who arrived from Arab and Bengal Sultanate during the time of Arakanese kings.

The Arabs were the first to lay the foundation of Muslim society in Arakan in the later part of the 7th century A.D. and the waves of immigration from Bengal were very significant, for with these immigrants came the Muslim nobels, statemen, traders, teachers, poets, and soldiers.

There had been large-scale conversion of the Hindus, Buddhists and animists to Islam who also constitute part and parcel of the Rohingya. In 15th century the number of converts to Islam soared, specially as the Muslims has established standard of credibility and stature in the community, initially through inter-mirrages.

These various migrations led to the admixture of blood and culture to form one common racial and linguistic classification to be known as Rohingya a term derived from “Rohang”, the ancient name of Arakan.

The Rohingya people developed a culture which was relatively advanced for that period. Schools, Madarasas were established, epics, ballads and riddles were advanced, music and dances were performed. This culture spread out all over Arakan. The Rohingya economy was also relatively developed. They developed agriculture, trade and commerce and extended their trade relation with neighbouring countries. Today the majority of the Rohingya people rely on agriculture as their base of subsistence; even Rohingya fishermen engage in agriculture during the non-fishing period.

Among the Muslim population of Chittagong two distinct ethnic characters are found; one is known as Chatgaiya and the other Rohai. Although professing the same religion they have different cultural habits. In fact the Rohais of Chittagong today are those Muslim people who fled Arakan (Rohang) as a result of Bunnan atrocities after the country was occupied in 1784 A.D. As many as 50% of the total population of Chittagong district are Rohais who trace their ancestoral origin to Arakan. The Rohingyas trace their origin to Arabs, Moors, Turks, Persians, Moghuls, Patthans and Bangalees.

Since Rohingyas are mixture many kinds of people, their check-bone is not so prominent and eyes are not so narrow like Rakhine Maghs and Burman. Generally they are broad shouldered, thin-bearded, a bit taller in stature than the Rakhine Maghs and Burmans but darker in complexion. They are some bronze coloured and not yellowish.

THE ROHINGYAS ARE A NATION

“From 1430 to 1531, for more than one hundred years, Arakan was ruled by the Muslims.” “Their Muslim Kingdom was independent in the 14th and 15th centuries. It was later absorbed by Burma” in 1784 A.D. The people of Arakan, the Rohingyas and Rakhines, had already organized their own statehood patterned after the Sultanate system of government current in those days. Thus in the context of Arakan the Rohingyas are not a minority but part of an integral whole. Today Rohingya nation exists because it is rooted in the direct personal feelings and the material interests of the large section of the Rohingya people whether in the homeland or in the places of refuge:

Aside from the compulsion of geography the Rohingya national identity is unique into Itself in terms of language and culture. The Rohingyas speak a common language and have common cultural trials. Almost all the Rohingyas are Muslims though there are a few Rohingya language speaking Hindus and Baruas. The Rohingyas are proud of their distinctive culture and language. They can not be classified cultural sub-group.

ROHINGYA HOMELAND

The Rohingyas inhabit a contiguous area and therefore have a separate territory which is the most crucial element in a national identity. The Rohingya populations in North Arakan are united by ancient heritage, a rich culture and distinct language. They have lived for many centuries within well defined geographical boundaries which demarcate their “Traditional Homeland”. The group identity of the Rohingya people has grown over the past several centuries, hand in hand with the growth of their homeland in North Arakan, where they worked together, spoke to each other, founded their families, educated their children and also sought refuge, from time to time, from physical attacks elsewhere in Arakan and Burma.

The Rohingyas were once in absolute majority in the whole of Arakan. But they have been exterminated in a systematic and planned way and their homeland has now shrunk progressively in insignificance or to semi-preservations — a process still evidenced. Planned increase in the Buddhist population systematically exterpate the Rohingya people and destroy the crucial geo-graphical link between areas in the whole of Arakan. It threatens the Rohingya’s claim to a contiguous homeland of the whole of North Arakan. The face of Rohingya homeland has been changed as the Rohingyas are helpless to check their demographic erosion. Despite systematic extermination of Rohingya population by means of genocidal actions and continued persecution, the Rohingyas still predominate in the area between the river Naf which demarcates the border between Burma and Bangladesh and river Kaladan, the longest river in Arakan. But the Rohingyas still claim that all those areas which have been inhabited by Muslims or atleast within their sphere of influnce before the pogram of 1942 are also included in their Traditional Homeland.

Arakan has always been a country with two nations within one geographic entity. Two different peoples, from the very ancient period, have been inhabiting Arakan. During the course of their settlements Arakan is divided into two parts : Muslim North and Buddhist South. That is the Rohingya homeland of North Arakan and Rakhine homeland of South Arakan.

Though Rohingyas live everywhere in Arakan and they are once majority in Maungdaw, Buthidaung, Rathidaung, Akyab, Kyauktaw, Mrohaung and Minbya. Now, they are majority only in former Mayu Dist. and Akyab Island.

RELIGION AND SOCIETY

All Rohingyas profess Islam. They are strict followers of Islamic traditions. In every village there is atleast one mosque and one grave-yard.

Rohingya Muslims celebrate religious festivals with great joy and enthussasm. Great rejoicings marked the two Eids, Eidul-Fitr, and Eidul-Azha (Qurbani Eid). Eids prayers were generally offered at Eidgahs or Mosques (where there is no Eidgah) and the days were spent in feeding, feasting and visiting the houses of the neighbours and relations. They also visit graveyard for ziyarat who left them earlier. Zakat is paid by all solvent Rohingya people ordinarily during the month of Ramadan. Qurbani is offered by all according to their financial means. Shab-i-Maraj, Shab-i-Barat and Shab-i-Qadar were observed with prayer, devotion, alms-giving and feeding of the poor. Romadan is greeted by all Rohingyas with much religious fervour. The birth day of Hazart Mohammed (s.m.) was celebrated every year on 12th of Rabiul-Awal as known Uman-Nabi.

Though the Rohingyas lived together with Rakhine Maghs, they lived with their own culture.They never eat together. Inter-marriage also not so common. They live in separate villages.

Every compact village or a part of it formed a social unit with the mosque as its centre and a uniting force for the convenience and regulation of social life of the inhabitants of the area. The eldest, pious, and influential man in the society was recogonised as the head of village society (Samaj) who decide all disputes among them with the help of village elders.

DWELLING-HOUSES

In Arakan, Rohingya people live in somewhat densely packed villages and the majority of their houses are built of wooden pole, bamboo, thatched with palm-leaves (Dani) and stand on stilts as a protection against the floods that rise and surge under the monsoon rains.

At townships headquarters and at most villages of any size or importance a few brick houses are to be found in Arakan. In the large villages have a fair number of wooden houses with thatch (dani) or corrugated iron roofs.

OCCUPATION AND TRADE

The soil of Arakan is very fertile and the climate is ideal for rice cultivation. Arakan is dependent entirely on agriculture; all other occupations are subsidiary to, or exist for the maintenance of, the agricultural population. Of total Rohingya population 80% are occupied in agriculture or pasturing. The next order of numbers are those engaged in trade in food-stuffs. The third in respect of numbers are shop-keepers and followed by persons engaged in transport by water and by road, wood workers, fisherman, manufacturers of tobacco and salts.

MARRIAGE

Endogamy is a factor resulting in the practice of segmentation. In other words, endogamy reinforces ties of common descent. The Rohingyas practise endogamy.

In early days, a Rohingya would not be eligible for marriage until three voyages of trade by water or three trips of trade on land. Otherwise, he would be looked down by the society and would call him impotent with contempt.

The Rohingya would never marry with other non-Muslim without conversion to Islam. If one many without conversion to Islam, the Rohingya society would boycott them until and unless he or she embraees Islam. So, the Rohingya parents control their children and arrange marriage between the parents. If they eloped, after having love affairs, the Rohingya society used to condemn them.

Betrothal is arranged by the Rohingya parents. The bride and the groom are not allowed to meet before marriage. Family lines are thoroughly checked before the engagement. Engagement breaks if there arise dissension amoung the parents or guardians. Mohar is fixed by the parents or guardians of the bride and the groom and it is most essential according Islamic law. It must be given by the groom for the bride. Both the bride and groom must declare their willingness by pronouncing the words “Khawbul Ahsi” (we do agree) in front of at lest two witness and the molvi Shaheeb (Alim) who perform the mirrage. Divorce rate among the Rohingyas is less then other races of Burma. The wedding ceremonies are held in receptions as far as possible. The receiption diner is usually held by the family of the bride-groom. In special case called “Salami”, the reciption dinner is hold at bride home. During the wedding month the relatives of the newly wedded couple use to invite them and are served with at least one meal in consecutive days by each and every household of their relatives which shows their affections for the couple. In almost all Rohingya’s marriage ceremonies ‘Howlla’ (Group singing) songs sing and folk-dancing of girls and women are common.

FOODS

Rice is the staple food grain of Arakan. The diet of the Rohingya is simple rice, fish, vegetables and chillis; meat was taken on occasions. The majority Rohingyas eat dry fishes with fresh vegetables or potatoes or also without any of them. On all festive occasion cows, water-buffolos and goats were slaughtered for sales and distribution.

Rakhine Maghs like pork very much. Rohingyas never touch or eat pork. Pork is forbidden by Islam. They eat mutton, beef, chicken after making Halal according to Islamic teaching. Rohingyas honoured their special guests slaughtering a goat or more with their means and the poor with a chiken.

DRESS

The Rakhine Maghs males wear Gaung-Boung and Rohingyas males wear caps. The Rakhine Maghs wear Burmese jackets and Rohingyas wear coats. In olden days Rohingya used to wear Turbans of white clothes of 10 yards long and 1/2 yard breath. But British and Indian culture changed the dress of the Rohingya.

The male Rohingya wears a shirt with long sleeves called Bazu covering the upper part of the body while the lower part is covered a sheet of cloth stitched from side to side called longgi. Vest or gonji is wear as inner garment by the Rohingya male.

The adult female Rohingya wears long sleeved garment known as Suli to cover the upper part of the body while the lower part is covered with a Tami. Inner garment called Boduli long sleeve barazier wear every gril and woman of Rohingya. They wear a petticoat of cloth called Assar. This is without tie or fastening, but is broutht round the waist, with the edges well twisted in and kept on by the graceful curve of the hips. Young woman fastened a silk Belt called Rayshamer-Dowali and old women fastened a pice of red cloth 2.5 yards long and six inches wide stitched from side to side called Jali to hold their Tami on their waists.

She also wears a scarf known-as Romal which cover the head and shoulders. Whenever she is out-door she wears a Burkha, traditional veil covering the whole body.

RITES AND RITUALS

Some Rohingya males keep hair fallen on shoulders. They are mostly Molvis. The Rohingyas, on their brith, they keep the Islamic names in Arabic. Some prefer Burmese names or Rakhine Magh names at schools mostly where the teachers are Rakhine Maghs as they can not pronounce Muslim name correctly. Some keep both names such as, Saleh Tun Sein, Ahmed Maung Maung and so on. It is also not good. Muslim should take pride as the kings of Arakan used Muslim titles.

On the death of a Rohingya Muslim all the members of the society arranged his / her funeral as a social duty and hurried him/her in the graveyard with a prayer (janaza) according to Islamic Law.

Rohingyas are good natured people. They are honest. They are not oppressors. They can not tolerate the oppressors. They defend their people even not caring their lives. They are brave and intelligent people.

During the Second World War, the Rohingya fought for the Independence of Burma with courage. Though the Japanese easily conquered the Southern part of Arakan within a few days, the Japanese were unable to control the North-Arakan due to the defence strategy. Even the Japanese had to retreat failing to advance-through the defence operation of Rohingyas. The courage and bravery of Rohingyas should be recorded in Myanmar Razawin. As Rohingyas are always neglected people, their bravery was never recorded. Rohingyas respect laws and are peace loving people.

SPORTS AND GAMES

Rohingyas have may indigenous sports and games which are usually held during summer and winter. Some also in rainny season. They are Boli-Khela (wrestling), Ghari-Khela (Boat racing), Mohal Khela, Gila-Khela Du Du Khela, Qunda Khela (weight lilting of round stone), Dan Khela, Ulu Khela, Ciyar Khela, Luk-palani Khela, Phoni Khela, Mal-pat Khela, Bak-goru Khela, Bosgya-buri Khela, Morish Khela, Bat Khela, Kalatur Khela, Saws-sa-rani Khela, Dope-marani Khela, diving and swimming, Paddy transplanting competition.

SONGS AND MUSICS

The Rohingyas are fond of music (both vocal and instrumental) and dance. Rohingyas have their own folk songs, dances and musics. Howla songs sing by women in almost all Rohingya’s marriage ceremonies and also women dance their flok dences in the same ceremonies. Young women mostly used mouth orgen (Baza) while dancing.Bitayali Geet, Jari Geet and Gazir Geet are very music is very sweet and meladious. Those who had came across the Rohingya National Programme from the Burma Broadcasting Service (BBS), they may recall the art of the Rohingya music.

LANGUAGE AND LITERATURE

There is separate Rohingya language, literature and civilization. It developed through Islamic civilization. Rohingya language is a mixture of Arabic, Persian, Urdu, Bangali and Rakhine Maghs, because they are the people of border and as same as the people of other border of Burma.

In the year 1429 A.D. General Wall Khan introduced Persian as state language of Arakan and also introduced Qazi courts in Arakan. Rohingya language is not recent make up. Muslim writers and poets used to write in this language since the early days in Arabic and Persian alphabets. One of the book is still in the possession of the author (Tahir Ba Tha). In addition to this, the coins of Arakan were melted in Arabic and Persian and also there are numerous Kyauksa (stone inscriptions) carved in Arabic.

The Rohingya literature is considerly rich in ballads, love songs, Floktales, Baramasa, legends,mystic songs, proverbs, bewsans, riddles, lullabies (Auli) and so on.

There are many Rohingya poets and writers who flourished in the court of Arakan kings. The Arakanese kings had come under the influence of Bengal Sultans. Most of the their courtiers were Bengali speaking people from Bengal and neighbouring Chittagong region and they encouraged the cultivation of Bengali language. The poets and writers who wrote in Bengali and a good number of their poems and works have been discovered.

Some of the Rohingya poets and writers who flourished in Araka court are: Abdu Minyo or Ahmedu Minyo, Shah Barid Khan, Daulat Kazi, Mardan and. Shah Alawal.

Quraishi Magan, Abdul Karim Khandkar, poet Abdul Karim are also well known writers and poets of Arakan.

The British government also used Persian as the official language of Arakan till 1836 A.D.In addition to Rohingyas many Rakhine Maghs also learned Persians. For example- Seikky Thado Pe and U Aung Gyi. Later on Persian was replaced by English and Urdu.

Thus written languages of Rohingya, Persian and Bengali almost disappeared from Arakan during the later part of British rule. The British subtitued English, Urdu and Burmese in place of Rohingya, Persian and Bengali. The Rohingya used Urdu till 1945 British re-entry. Urdu language is rich in poetry and literature.

The kinds of birds can be differentiated with their feathers. So it is time for Rohingyas to establish their ancestral dress, literature and culture. Rohingyas are rich with fine-arts, music and architecture. Rohingya architecture resemble the Arab Saracenic style which is witnessed by the mosques of Arakan. Sandi Khan mosque was built with hard rocks and easier design which stood as the oldest Rohingya’s archeological monument.

So, it must be preserved by the Rohingyas.
Rohingyas should take pride for those Muslims who had built this mosque.

The Source

China says Rohingya issue should not be ‘internationalized’


 BEIJING (Reuters) – The Rohingya issue should not be complicated, expanded or “internationalized”, China’s top diplomat said, as the United Nations prepares to set up a body to prepare evidence of human rights abuses in Myanmar.

FILE PHOTO: Rohingya refugees scramble for aid at a camp in Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh September 24, 2017. 

The U.N. Human Rights Council voted on Thursday to establish the body, which will also look into possible genocide in Myanmar’s western state of Rakhine.

SPONSORED

China, the Philippines and Burundi voted against the move, whose backers said it was supported by more than 100 countries.

Over the last year, more than 700,000 Rohingya Muslims have fled the Buddhist-majority country to neighboring Bangladesh following a military response to attacks on security posts by Rohingya insurgents.

The United Nations has called Myanmar’s actions “ethnic cleansing”, a charge Myanmar rejects, blaming Rohingya “terrorists” for most accounts of atrocities.

FILE PHOTO: Rohingya refugees try to take shelter from torrential rain as they are held by the Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB) after illegally crossing the border, in Teknaf, Bangladesh, August 31, 2017.

China has close relations with Myanmar, and backs what Myanmar officials call a legitimate counter-insurgency operation in Rakhine. Beijing has helped to block a resolution on the crisis at the U.N. Security Council.

Speaking to Bangladesh Foreign Minister Abul Hasan Mahmood Ali and Myanmar’s minister of the office of the State Counsellor Kyaw Tint Swe in New York on Thursday, China’s State Councillor Wang Yi said the Rakhine issue was a complex, historical one.

“The Rakhine state issue is in essence an issue between Myanmar and Bangladesh. China does not approve of complicating, expanding or internationalizing this issue,” Wang said, according to a Chinese foreign ministry statement issued on Friday.

China hopes that Myanmar and Bangladesh can find a resolution via talks, and China is willing to continue to help provide a platform for this communication, he added.

“The international community, including the United Nations, can also play a constructive role on this,” Wang said.

The statement added that U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres also attending the meeting, held on the sidelines of a U.N. summit.

The Source : Reporting by Ben Blanchard; Editing by Michael Perry

Event: Rohingya: The Silent Genocide?


Event: Rohingya: The Silent Genocide?

22 Feb. Pembroke College, Oxford 
#OxfordUniversity Islamic Society is hosting an evening devoted to “#Rohingya: The Silent Genocide?”. 
Senior General Min Aung Hlaing openly calls it “an unfinished business”. 
Imagine what “a finished business” to them looks like. 
We’ll call a spade a spade: Myanmar is committing a genocide.

Zarni
The Rohingya crisis in Myanmar is one of the biggest humanitarian crisis the world has seen in the 21st century. Close to a million people have been ‘ethnically cleansed’ of their own land in the space of less than a year. To what extent is the Aung San Suu Kyi-led government to be blamed? Has the international community failed to tackle this disaster? Has the west been too soft with their words? What is our role as students of the University of Oxford, the very same institution Aung San Suu Kyi graduated from and is the recipient of an honorary DPhil? Is there a solution to end the human rights abuses that the ‘most persecuted minority’ has been facing for almost half a century? And many more questions that challenge the current regime in Myanmar and the stance that the global community has taken. 


Join us as some of the best academics and activists who have field work experience in Myanmar address these topics. It will be one of the biggest events held this term by any society and arguably one of the biggest in recent history.


Speakers:

Professor Azeem Ibrahim: 
-PhD, Cambridge University
-Research Professor at the Strategic Studies Institute, US Army War College.
-Senior Fellow at the Centre for Global Policy in Washington
-International Security Fellow at the Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University
-World Fellow, Yale University
-Rothermere Fellow, University of Oxford
-Board of the International Centre for the Study of Radicalization and Political Violence, Department of War Studies, Kings College London University.
-Ranked as a Top 100 Global Thinker by the European Social Think Tank in 2010.
-Ranked Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum

Professor Maung Zarni:
-Blogger, writer, columnist, poet, and fellow with the Genocide Documentation Center of Cambodia.
– PhD specializing in the politics of education and propaganda under military rule in Burma
(1962-88) University of Wisconsin at Madison.
– He was also schooled at the Universities of Mandalay, California and Washington
-Taught and/or held research and leadership fellowships at National-Louis University in Chicago, Georgetown, Harvard, Oxford, LSE, UCL Institute of Education, Malaya, and Brunei.
-Co-author, ‘The Slow Burning Genocide of Myanmar’s Rohingyas’
-Recipient of the bi-annual “Cultivation of Harmony” award from the world’s oldest inter-faith organization, the Parliament of the World’s Religions in 2015.

Tun Khin:
-Actual Rohingya born and brought up in Arakan, Myanmar.
-Grandson of the Parliamentary Secretary during the democratic period in Myanmar.
-President of Burmese Rohingya Organisation, UK which has been a leading voice for Rohingya people around the world.
-Actively involved in informing US Congress and State Department, British Parliament, Swedish Parliament, European Union Parliament and Commission, the UN Indigenous Forum in NY and the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva.
-Recipient of a leadership award from Refuges International Washington DC in April 2015 for his relentless effort working on the Rohingya issue.

On Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/events/579778752357477/ 

Trudeau urged to raise issue of pellet-guns in IoK during India visit


By News Desk  Published: February 16, 2018



Canadian PM Justin Trudeau. PHOTO: REUTERS
In an open letter written by Amnesty International to Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, the organisation has called on the PM to raise six different issues including the use of pellet-firing shotguns in Kashmir during his visit to India.

Trudeau is visiting India from February 17 to 23 and the letter lays “out a number of pressing human rights concerns and related recommendations that Amnesty International’s 300,000 supporters across Canada urge you [Trudeau] to raise in all possible exchanges, including meetings with Prime Minister Narendra Modi.”
According to Amnesty International, the areas of concern are: threatened forced mass expulsion of Rohingya people from India; justice and accountability for the 1984 Sikh massacre; use of pellet-firing shotguns in Kashmir; demonisation of religious minorities;  decriminalisation of consensual adult same-sex relations; and criminalisation of marital rape.
Use of pellet-firing shotguns in held-Kashmir
Concerned about use of pellet-firing shotguns in held-Kashmir, Amnesty International urged the Canadian PM “to call on Prime Minister Modi to immediately ban the use of pellet-firing shotguns as a means of policing protests.”
The open letter states these shotguns have killed, blinded and injured thousands of people. “People injured by pellet-firing shotguns have faced serious physical and mental health issues, including symptoms of psychological trauma,” the letter reads further.
The use of pellet shotguns in held-Kashmir violates international standards on the use of force, states Amnesty International. They also urged Trudeau to “work with the state government of Jammu and Kashmir to set up independent investigations into cases of deaths or serious injuries caused by pellet firing shotguns.”
Demonisation of Muslims in India
Hate crimes against Muslims has also been raised as a major concern by the human rights organisation. According to the letter, in 2017, several hate crimes against Muslims were reported in different parts of India, amid a rising tide of Islamophobia in the country. Stating that this has “contributed to a growing sense of insecurity for many Muslims, and intensified religious tensions.”
As such, the organisation urges Trudeau call on PM Modi to”publicly condemn hate crimes and Islamophobia and work with state governments to end impunity for those responsible for hate crimes against Muslims.”
Other areas of concern
The open letter also asks Trudeau to call on Modi to ensure that Rohingya people living in India are not forcibly expelled, and “to explore opportunities for Canada and India to work together to pressure the government of Myanmar to end discrimination and violence against Rohingya people.”
The 1984 Sikh massacre has also been raised as an issue of concern and it is urged that “all those suspected of involvement in the 1984 killings, including those with command responsibility, are prosecuted.”

The letter also asks the Canadian PM to discuss with Modi to decriminalise consensual adult same-sex relations. Further, the organisation also asks that India “amend the law to remove the exception to marital rape in the definition of rape in the penal code.”

I visited the Rohingya refugee camps and here is what Bangladesh is doing right




    Nearly 1 million Rohingya refugees have entered Bangladesh from Myanmar since September 2017. The Bangladeshi government’s plan to start repatriating them beginning this Tuesday, Jan. 22, has been postponed due to concerns about their safety.
That the Bangladesh government agreed to the delay, speaks to its benevolent attitude toward the Rohingya refugees. In a recent trip to Bangladesh I witnessed this benevolence firsthand. I saw roads adorned with pro-refugee banners. Even those with opposing political views have come together to support the Rohingyas.
Posters hailing the Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina. Sabrina KarimCC BY
The Bangladesh case stands in stark contrast to what happened in Europe in 2015, which faced an influx of a similar number of refugees, where many European countries saw rising anti-refugee sentiment among its political parties and a lack of a cohesive refugee management plan in the European Union.
In Bangladesh, I witnessed how the refugee camps were being run in an efficient, effective and compassionate manner.

The refugee problem

In August 2017 the Bangladeshi government allowed into the country a large influx of Rohingya refugees, who were escaping massacre by the Burmese military. The Burmese government claims that it was rooting out Rohingya terrorists who had attacked military posts. The United Nations, however, called these attacks “a textbook example of ethnic cleansing.”
Since then, a massive number of Rohingyas crossed the border to come into Bangladesh, known to be one of the most densely populated countries in the world. Currently, over half a million Rohingyas are living in refugee camp sites. The estimated costs of hosting them is US$1 billion dollars a year.

The camp management system

During the first few days of January, I visited the camps and witnessed firsthand the scale of operations necessary to manage the camps.
A refugee camp. Sabrina KarimCC BY
Since the beginning of the crisis, the Bangladeshi government set up a separate civilian authority to manage the refugee crisis. All domestic and international aid agencies must gain approval from this governing body to work in the country.
In addition, since September 2017, the government has deployed thousands of soldiers from the Bangladeshi military to manage the camps. The soldiers manage camp headquarters, where supplies are stored and guard the roads leading to the camps. To understand how big this camp is, and how widespread, think of a city as large as Austin, Texas.
I found the camps to be to be efficiently run and well-organized. They have been divided into administrative zones led by Rohingya leaders chosen by the Bangladeshi military. The all-male leaders are responsible for around 200 families each. They ensure that everyone under their watch gets provisions from the distribution sites and serve as the main contact for any kind of issue, be it finding information, or resolving disputes.
The government has also set up a large surveillance system, which includes a network of internal and external intelligence officers. They control who can or cannot enter into the camps. For example, I had to register the donations I took with me before being allowed to enter the road to the camps. No cash donations are allowed. Government officials told me that they are taking these precautions to prevent drug and human trafficking and also to minimize the possibility of Rohingya recruitment by militant groups.
But there are other issues that the government cannot completely control. Among them is the spread of communicable diseases. Last November, an outbreak of diphtheria, a deadly bacterial throat infection, quickly claimed at least 31 lives. Additionally, I observed that there are concerns about environmental damage and loss of biodiversity as the government cleared forest reserve land to build the camps.

Reasons for success

Bangladesh’s rapid response to the refugee crisis was possible due to country’s long-term experience with disaster management.
After gaining independence in 1971, Bangladesh faced one of the worst famines in history because of flooding and chronic hunger, in which an estimated 300,000 to 1.5 million people died.
This disaster was not, however, a one-off event. Each year, the country is plagued with rains and cyclones, that claim many lives and displace people. As a result, the government has had to come up with a long-term crises management plan. A vast network of local people who act as rapid first responders has helped decrease casualties, although a large number of deaths do occur every year. The same system was put to use during the refugee crisis.
Furthermore, Bangladesh has been a part of the United Nations’ peacekeeping operations since 1988. This experience has allowed its military to understand how to manage a crisis where vulnerable populations are affected. Among other things, I observed how the military created “safe spaces” for women, children and the elderly in the camps.
In addition to peacekeeping experience, as the soldiers explained, it is a mix of military discipline and Bangladeshi culture of hospitality that has enabled their success.
It helps, of course, that the Rohingya are devoutly Muslim and share a religious identity with Bangladeshis, though not language or ethnicity. These similarities might make empathy and compassion more possible, but soldiers and aid workers point to something else that motivates them to care for the Rohingya: Bangladesh’s own history. They point to the parallels between the Rohingya crisis and the violence during 1971 liberation war, when East Pakistan won independence from Pakistan and became Bangladesh.
One aid worker, in particular, mentioned that she heard reports of Burmese military camps in which Rohingya women were forced to visit soldiers at night. She recalled how sexual violence was rampant during the liberation war as well. She told me that she felt a particular affinity for helping the Rohingya for this reason.

What will happen in the future?

The question is, will this treatment last?

Rohingya refugees. Sabrina KarimCC BY
Rohingya refugees I spoke to do not want to go back to Myanmar. Several women described to me the violence they had been through. One woman showed me how she had been shot in the neck and another pointed to the extensive burns on her face.
In the camps, they have food, shelter, schools, sanitation, and most importantly, peace. They are receiving goods and amenities that they have not seen before. This was also confirmed by aid workers, who told me that the refugees have come from such deprivation that, at times, they have to be told not to eat the soap that is given to them. Many have never seen daily toiletry items such as soap, toothpaste and moisturizers.
But the government of Bangladesh is also apprehensive about integrating the refugees too well into Bangladeshi society. I observed, for example, that the Rohingya children are prohibited from learning the local Bangla language in camp schools and are only taught Burmese and English. Any integration into Bangladeshi society would give fodder to the Burmese government’s claim that the Rohingya are Bangladeshi immigrants to Myanmar.
There is also the fear of radicalizationExtremist groups have tried to recruit Rohingya into their organizations in the past.
There are other issues as well: In the long haul, Bangladesh cannot sustain the current population. Almost 1 in 4 Bangladeshis live in poverty. While it is true that Bangladesh’s economy has improved over the past several years – a reason, government officials explained to me, that the country could provide aid in the early stages of the refugee crisis – this is not sustainable in the long run.
The economic strain is already noticeable in Cox’s Bazar, where many of the refugee camps are located. The local population is starting to complain about rising costs and job shortages. With the potential for national elections this year or the next, public opinion matters.

The plan to repatriate the refugees has been put on hold because of continued violence in Myanmar and an anti-Rohingya sentiment. With repatriation delayed, Bangladesh will need more international help. This is not a crisis it can manage alone.

Refugees raise their hands to shout that they will not go back. AP Photo/Manish Swarup

After discovery of five mass Rohingya graves, U.N. still won’t say a genocide is happening


A MAN TAKES PHOTOS WITH A MOBILE PHONE OF THE DEAD BODIES IN YEBAWKYA VILLAGE, MAUNGDAW ON SEPTEMBER 27, 2017. MYANMAR’S ARMY SAID ON SEPTEMBER 24, 2017 IT HAD DISCOVERED A MASS GRAVE CONTAINING THE BODIES OF 28 HINDUS, INCLUDING WOMEN AND CHILDREN, IN VIOLENCE-WRACKED RAKHINE STATE, BLAMING THE KILLINGS ON MUSLIM ROHINGYA INSURGENTS. CREDIT: STR /AFP/GETTY IMAGES.


By
 D. Parvaz

February 1, 2018


Why is the international community still struggling to put a name to what’s happening in Myanmar?

The Associated Press on Thursday published an exclusive report that adds to a catalog of horrors in Myanmar. The news agency confirmed the presence of at least five previously unreported mass graves filled with the bodies of Rohingya villagers. This counters the Myanmar government’s line that it is only fighting Rohingya insurgents and that such massacres are not taking place.

Yanghee Lee, the U.N.’s special envoy on Myanmar, responded to the report that the months-long military operation against the Rohingya has “the hallmarks” of a genocide” — but wouldn’t say it outright.

The Rohingya are a Muslim minority in Buddhist-majority Myanmar, where they don’t have citizenship rights and have been subject to multiple rounds of crackdowns for decades. The most recent crackdown, started in August after insurgents launched deadly attacks on police posts, has been by far the most brutal. Thus far, it has led to:
  • Nearly 700,000 Rohingya (out of 1.1 million) fleeing into camps in neighboring Bangladesh
  • At least 9,000 Rohingya being killed in the first four months
  • Reports of near famine and starvation conditions among Rohingya — especially children — remaining in Myanmar
  • Documentation of mass rape of Rohingya girls and women by Myanmar military
  • The destruction of hundreds of Rohingya villages by the Myanmar military
Bangladesh and Myanmar have signed a deal to repatriate Rohingya refugees who fled the conflict, but neither government has offered details on how the Rohingya will be sent back home safely when their villages have been burned down and even at the best of times, they were living under apartheid conditions in Myanmar.

The United Nations and the United States got around to calling the operation “ethnic cleansing” in the fall, but have thus far avoided saying it rises to the level of all-out genocide. Genocide is defined as acts “committed with the intent to destroy, in whole, or part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group” and is a crime under international law. Ethnic cleansing is the “rendering an area ethnically homogeneous by using force or intimidation to remove persons of given groups from the area.” It is not in violation of any specific international law.

In December, Zeid Ra‘ad al-Hussein, the U.N.’s human rights chief, asked: “Can anyone — can anyone — rule out that elements of genocide may be present?”

Zeid will not be seeking another term in the position, citing “the current geopolitical context, might involve bending a knee in supplication; muting a statement of advocacy; lessening the independence and integrity of my voice.” Veteran diplomat Bill Richardson, a member of the advisory group on the Rohingya crisis, also announced his resignation from his position earlier this month saying that the board’s mission was tantamount to “whitewash” and said Myanmar’s leader, Aung San Suu Kyi, lacked “moral leadership.”

“It’s disappointing that this has been called the most egregious example of persecution, ethnic cleansing, even of genocide in the world today, and yet, there does not seem to be much attention being given to it,” said Robert Marro, director outreach in Washington for the Burma Task Force.

“Even people like Bill Richardson resigning from the commission and criticizing Suu Kyi is not making headline news,” he told ThinkProgress, adding the fact that so little attention is being paid in general to the situation is “very disappointing,” especially given that the crisis is ongoing.

“We’ve been saying more months and months that are all of the signs are indicative of some kind of genocide going on.” Marro said that all of the group’s field research indicates that the number of those killed is “substantially greater” than official estimates. He added that he’s not surprised that these graves were discovered and is certain others will be found.

Still, the U.N. — and the international community writ large — is trying to read the tea leaves laid out by mass graves before trying to figure out if Maynmar is carrying out a genocide. Lee told reporters that she is unable to make any definitive statement about genocide until, according to the AP, a “credible international tribunal or court” makes that determination, but, she added, the U.N. is “seeing signs and is building up to that.” 

Is China Embellishing its economy through despotism?


The Land of Dragon, propaganda and ulterior motives i.e. China has always been a part of discussions among countries across the globe. Some of these nations are rapidly becoming its ‘economical’ partners and few of them like USA, India,Japan and nowadays Australia (after knowing that Beijing is trying to influence their politicians) are speaking against it. The others are still deciding, Policies of Trump has shook their faith in USA but they do not trust Xi Jinping either. Speculations are rife that China is on the verge of becoming a Global force able to change the world order. Though, is this road made by supporting Dictorians and using the blood of innocents? To know the answer, we first need to peek inside China itself. Let’s start with its Achilles’ heel, East Turkestan.


There is a famous Chinese proverb, A diamond with a flaw is worth more than a pebble without imperfections. East Turkestan is just that for PRC,an Imperfect Diamond. It was occupied by them in October 1949.This realm is home to Millions of Uyghurs who are a Turkic ethnic group. Alas, its name was changed to Xinjiang, means new territory. Uyghurs never liked the communist regime and after their nation’s accession. There was nothing common between both the regions. From Turkish traditions to their belief in Quran. From the songs they sung to the pictures they painted. From their food to the clothes they wore. Even their Names, language and games were different from that of Chinese. One can understand these disparities by a single fact that Uyghurs have a religion while China believes in atheism.
 

The above Dissimilarities were always dealt in a harsh manner. The PRC put unthinkable restrictions on Uyghur community. No one was allowed to practice Islam or study Quran. Their farmlands and ancestral homes were being snatched away. The influential leaders, nationalist scholars and artists were all being hanged to death. People even came out on streets to save East Turkestan but they were butchered by military. Basically, anyone who uttered a single word against China was behind the bar. Then came the cultural revolution by Mao, only the mention of this incident and one can recall all the horrors of that time. During this incident too, Uyghurs remained the main targets of Maoists. In spite of being poles apart and its unlikeliness for the people, China occupied East Turkestan.


Till this day, Uyghurs are suffering in the hands of communist regime as it desperately tries to hold on this territory but Why????


At present, East Turkestan is the largest Chinese occupied division and the eighth largest country subdivision in the world, spanning over 1.6 million km2.. Not only this,the most well-known route of the historical Silk Road ran through the territory from the east to its northwestern border. In recent decades, abundant oil and mineral reserves have been found here, and it is the largest natural gas-producing region for Beijing. Traditionally an agricultural region, East Turkestan also has large deposits of minerals and oil including abundant reserves of coal, crude oil, and natural gas. 

Ripping off the Uyghur land of its resources,the oil and gas extraction industry in Aksu and Karamay is booming, with the West–East Gas Pipeline connecting to Shanghai. Over a fifth of China’s coal, natural gas and oil resources came due to the invasion of East Turkestan. And today it plays a vital role in Xi Jinping’s ‘One Belt One Road’ initiative. He is leaving no stone unturned to exploit Uyghurs and suppress their voice of freedom.


Though it is not only the people of East Turkestan who are being punished for their natural wealth. If we take a look at the countries who think China as their ally, we will find that those Governments are themselves wolves in sheep’s clothing. A large number of investments made by Beijing have been in conflicted zones with an authoritarian Government. Countries like Maldives,Philippines, Cambodia, parts of Africa, Myanmar, Saudi Arabia, Egypt etc. have one thing in common and that is lack of freedom. The common people in these countries are already suffering and by filling the pockets of corrupt politicians, China is making sure that the situation remains the same.


This attitude of a wannabe super power is due to one reason, Economy. China wants to increase and expand its economy by Hook or crook.”


The economic interests of Beijing has always overshadowed the Humanitarian issues all over the world and recent Rohingya crisis is a testimony to this fact. China’s reaction to it has uncovered its true intentions. Millions of Rohingyas were left without homes, many died and children were orphaned but PRCsupported the Myanmar Government. All of this because of a pipeline which will let Beijing acquire 200,000 barrels of crude a day. It is no coincidence that the areas of the pipeline passing through Myanmar’sRakhine states includes ethnic cleansing ofthe Rohingya. 
 

Same is the case in other countries. Beijing’s giant state corporations have invested billions of dollars in dams, oilfields and mines to dominate theCambodian investment landscape. In Maldives, it has given Huge loans to the corrupt PPM Government and investing in infrastructure projects like Hulhumale Housing schemes, bridges etc. It has influenced the Philippine President Rodrigo Roa Duterte so well that he is supporting Xi Jinpingin claiming most of the South China Sea. China has also set up funds with the UAE and Qatar worth a total $20 billion to invest in conventional energy. It extended its contracts to buy oil and half of Beijing’s oil imports originate from the Middle East. The Governments of these countries are either too weak or draconian in nature.


According to Xi Jinping or any Dragon leader it isn’t worth one’s while if millions of people are dying or living in horrible condition. They will keep ignoring Rohingya Genocide, imprisonment of Human Rights activists and journalists, murders of politicians, bloggers being flogged 100 times or Millions forced to step on Land Mines until they hinder China’s growth. They will keep flourishing an economy on the cost of Human lives and pave its way amid corpses. Its been more than 60 years since Uyghurs are suffering and now the Dragon is trapping other countries too.


According to Mao Zedong, Political power grew out of the barrel of the gun. Following his leader, Xi Jinping is growing Economic power too from that same barrel of gun.


Originally posted on Turkistan Times

Save The Rohingya (Muslims) of Myanmar/Burma from Genocide


Save The Rohingya (Muslims) of Myanmar/Burma from Genocide

The Rohingya (Muslims) of Myanmar/Burma are undergoing a horrific act of GENOCIDE by the Burmese Rakhine (Buddhist), Military (Junta) and Government, with approximately 10,000 KILLED in just 4 WEEKS (and 40,000 killed in 2012 ALONE!) according to reports, scores KIDNAPPED and taken to CONCENTRATION CAMPS, their women RAPED, homes and mosques being BURNED, and they are being refused asylum in neighbouring Bangaldesh

THIS IS A SERIOUS HUMANITARIAN CRISIS THAT NEEDS THE MOST URGENT ATTENTION AND ACTION

the “United Nations” for what its worth has labelled it one of the worst acts of genocide


AUNG SAN SUU KYI COMPLICIT IN HER SILENCE — Ironically, Burma’s long persecuted opposition party, “the National League for ‘DEMOCRACY'”, and its Leader – the infamous Aung San Suu Kyi (released in November, 2010 after 21 years under house arrest) – have FAILED to take a stance or any action on this act of GENOCIDE, with many members of this very so-called “democratic” party actually supporting the GENOCIDE of the Rohingya (after having ironically fought for “democracy” for decades).

A CALL FOR BURMA TO BE LIKE “ISRAEL” — “Party Head Dr. Aye Maung, who had welcomed Suu Kyi’s win in parliamentary by-elections in April “as a great chance for all of us to change Burma to a democratic country,” recently called for Burma “to be like Israel” — apparently a reference to the oppressive controls placed on Palestinians to ‘protect’ Israelis.” (more in Francis Wade’s article: http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2012/07/05/high_minded_bigots?page=0%2C0)

MORE INFORMATION —

– An insight into this situation, with some political and historical context: www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2012/07/05/high_minded_bAigots?page=0,0

– A report from someone who managed to escape this HORROR from Maung Ni Village: http://www.restlessbeings.org/projects/rohingya/concentration-camps-and-systematic-rape-rohingya-under-persecution

– More information on the plight of the Rohingya refugees in Myanmar/Burma: http://www.restlessbeings.org/projects/rohingya/rohingya-the-forgotten-refugees

::: PLEASE SPREAD, SHARE, READ UP, RAISE AWARENESS, AND JOIN ACTION CAMPAIGNS :::

Twitter: #Rohingya #RestlessBeings #Burma #Myanmar

— with Rahima Begum.

Dear President Obama,

I am a refugee; a victim of the Burmese regime and Rakhine authority. I have been writing articles for Tim King of Salem News since June regarding the violence in the Arakan State.

We the Rohingya people welcome you warmly and are highly grateful for your visit to our country; it is essential for the transition to democracy in Burma.

When you were elected the first time, I was one of the happiest people because it signified a new page not only in American history but also in modern historical records, an expansion of the definition of democracy, a model for a multi-cultural society.

After the Second World War, Cold War and other ideological clashes that caused the loss of millions of lives all over the world, natural disasters swept away the lives of millions more and an increase in the world’s population saw a thirst for the pure water of peace and justice. Ultra-nationalism, racism, fascism, communism, terrorism, socialism and dictatorship are nowhere welcomed by modern man. The majority of scholars believe that democracy is the best solution for us all.

Increasing populations, advancing technology, shrinking resources, access to information and knowledge plus competing economies now challenge world leaders to solve various problems. It is time now for world leaders to reflect on their capacity regarding world peace and justice.

The United States of America became a single superpower which could lead the world towards globalisation, internationalism and peaceful cooperation. I wish you will be able to give a speech to the world about peace as this coming New Year’s greeting.

Burma and Democracy

Every deed results in a consequence and every person should get his or her wages at the end of their work. ‘You work we benefit’ is a communist mentality.

Before British colonization, Burma had nothing: no proper education system, no suitable communication system, isolated from the rest of the world. When American people were celebrating their 111th year of independence, Burma became a colony of the British. With the help of the British, the Burmese were introduced to the Western concept of democracy.

After independence, Burma became a parliamentary democratic country during which period Burma became like a tiger in the Asian region. But unfortunately, when dictator Ne Win took power, slowly it became one of the poorest countries in the world.

Rohingya and Burma

We the Rohingya, an indigenous group, are treated inhumanely in this country. One would hope at this rare opportunity to highlight some important issues, that I hope may be included as serious negotiation points with the Burmese high ranking officials and decision making bodies within the mission of the United States. Our lives in the Rakhine state are currently unbearable, we are completely helpless human beings. Since I believe the details of the Rohingya situation are already known by US officials, I will simply highlight some points in brief on behalf of my people:

  • Rohingya are not allowed to move freely from one village to another, or one township to another, or one district to another, or from the Rakhine state to the rest of Burma.
  • The government places many restrictions on us to make our lives difficult that would not be accepted anywhere else in the world.
  • All government officials, in particular the Rakhine, are specifically trained to discriminate, single out, oppress, mistreat, mishandle, neglect, overlook, avoid and disregard the Rohingya people. They act with all sorts of totally unacceptable and impatient behaviours,  mistreating people in atrocious ways. These staff are recruited and assigned by tyrannical governors that are still widespread across the region.
  • Such inhuman coordinated motivations humiliate, degrade and frustrate the entire Rohingya population before the eyes of all the other ethnic groups.
  • In regard to movement restrictions, trade and commerce within the Rohingya localities has now reached level zero.
  • Because of land confiscations, many more Rohingya farmers have been made landless and they are now forced to wander about the region.
  • For the last 60 years, consecutive military governments have launched ethnic cleansing operations to remove the Rohinga people.
  • Since the year of 1994 onward, some of the wandering people, who were jobless, homeless, uneducated and hopeless, often forced into criminality, frequently with chronic diseases, were recruited by secret agents who offered improved livelihoods in the Rakhine state.
  • The military not only confiscated land but they also seized cattle and property owned by the Rohingya.
  • The Rohingya were forced to build villages for migratory people and construct buildings such as pagodas, monasteries and roads without any compensation.
  • Due to marriage restrictions, Rohingya people have to face a social penalty and pay fines from time to time. Although there are many ethnicities throughout the Rakhine state and the rest of Burma, no other race is restricted regarding marriage except the Rohingya people in the Rakhine state.

We the Rohingya have been living under the shadow of fear and terror, oppression, exploitation, injustice, unfairness, prejudice, extrajudicial punishment, racial discrimination and other countless inhuman mistreatment,  which are a combination of works from both Rakhine chauvinists and the Union  government, for more than sixty long years in areas such as job employment, opportunities, health care, social work, land check points, steamer and boat ports, mountain passes, airports,  immigration offices, municipal offices, revenue offices, education departments, farmlands, distributions and so on.

Because of more than 6 decades long of oppressive ruling circumstances and regrettably, racially designed ethnic cleansing operations under several banners sponsored by the Burmese successive governments and aided by Rakhine ultra-nationalists, this has resulted in the forced exodus of more than one million Rohingya Muslims who sought refuge outside Burma,  the internal dislocation of at least 2/3 million, and the death of another 100,000 as per the universal declaration of human rights.

Rohingya Love Rakhine Brothers and Sisters  

Whilst Rohingya people have been loving the Rakhine brothers and sisters as their own, few Rakhine nationalists from either part of the state have shown common respect, feelings of love, ample sympathy, communal understanding and equal recognition to the Rohingya people throughout history.  Now it is time for Rakhine nationalists to learn. People such as politicians, historians, scholars, government staff, students, school teachers, open-minded monks and all community relevant dignitaries, must learn how  to  step  closer  to  build  constructive  approaches  as per the advice of international organizations and the dignitaries who have recently paid goodwill visits to Myanmar including the Secretary of State Hilary Clinton and Prime Minister Sheik Hasina of Bangladesh.
    
Today  the entire  Rohingya  people  are  afraid  of  being  harassed,  physically  tortured, molested, and burned, looted and persecuted, and they fear their villages and belongings being set on fire due to the absence of fair security provided by the Union of the Central Government, where only Rakhine police are  equipped by weapons in the Rohingya populated areas in Rakhine state.

Recent Genocidal Movement Against Rohingya 

Since May 2012,  the Burmese regime and Rakhine State authority have been continuously killing the Rohingya , burning their houses, looting their properties that caused 150,000 IDP refugees, and nearly one million people are now living under a blockade and are facing starvation. The regime implements a new type of terrorism, fascism, and Buddhist ultra-nationalism in the name of the democracy process.

President Thein Sein opposed international humanitarian aids pointing to public desire as his excuse. The word democracy is being misused against democracy. With the votes of 60%, killing the 10% minority becomes legal according to Thein Sein’s government.

Save the Rohingya

In the Burmese democratic process, thousands of Rohingya lives, properties, and rights have being sacrificed, and yet the Rohingya issue was the first issue which pushed international human rights activists to put pressure on the regime towards democracy.

President Obama, you have the power of eloquence, intellectual and technical methods to solve this issue easily. As a world leader, I believe you could help resolve this issue and in doing so you would be a role model for the rest of the world.

I personally beg you and your government to save the Rohingya people and help remove racism from Burma, which results in terrible acts both regionally and internationally.

I believe the lives of the Rohingya in Arakan State are as bad as the lives of those in the concentration camps of Hitler. Could you please come and have a look at us?  We believe that your visit could help change the course of world history especially in regards to Southeast Asian regional developments.

Yours Sincerely,
Aung Aung Oo
(location removed for safety)
Sittwe(Akyab)
Burma

Copyright notice:  Please share and reprint this letter as you wish.

Please also read my letter to Obama here

Monday, 12 November 2012

Letter to Obama: A Plea for the Rohingya

Monday 12th November

Dear President Obama,

I find myself a human rights activist. I never set out to be one. I just got so sick of seeing injustice in the world I decided to start speaking out and doing what I can to help people which has led me here. I live in the UK. I am also a web developer, which comes in handy when campaigning for justice.

I cried with joy when you were first elected. Inspired like so many others, hopeful that you would bring change to the world. But like many others I also became disillusioned over your first term in office. I knew you had an uphill battle and couldn’t change the world over night, but America’s lack of support for Palestinian human rights and especially the people of Gaza has been more than disappointing. I cannot understand why Guantanamo continues to exist. And hypocrisy over Bahrain is so upsetting when I see my dear friends suffering daily under a cloud of tear gas on an island run by police thugs, suppressed by a regime you continue to excuse and even support.

Renewed Hope

However, like many others, I’m ready to give you another chance. Yes you are not my president, I don’t have a vote, but we all know that the President of the United States has the power to start wars, and sometimes end them. I figure you are less likely to bomb Iran than the other guy, so you would have got my vote. Your tears at your after party talk seemed sincere and touched by heart. We all need hope, its a powerful thing. I have renewed my hope in you.

And I am not the only one who has put their hope in you. So has my Rohingyan friend in Burma. He is somewhere undercover, likely in a refugee camp in Sittwe, bravely gathering information from the ground and keeping a link open with the rest of the world via Twitter @aungaungsittwe https://twitter.com/aungaungsittwe He does so at great risk to himself, but he doesn’t mind that. He tells me that he doesn’t care if he lives or dies, to be dead in Hell he would not mind if he could see his people win their rights.

Green Bananas

I first got to learn about the Rohingya just this Summer. The apparent ‘riots’ had just begun in June, when a friend contacted me about their plight which she had learnt about through the fabulous grassroots charity Restless Beings based in London http://www.restlessbeings.org/projects/rohingya . She asked me if I could do something to help her help them, since she knew I was a human rights campaigner. I said if you want me to help, go find a source on the ground from whom we can learn the truth as to what is happening (kind of hoping she wouldn’t come back because I really had my hands full with daily atrocities happening in Bahrain). But within a few days she came back with the telephone number of a Rohingya man living in Arakan state. He was a village leader who had been collecting information from all over the area. We interviewed him over a number of calls. He was living in fear, his village had run out of food and they had been eating green bananas, but even the green bananas had run out he told us. Children were dying of starvation. No one dared to leave their homes for fear that they would be killed. We were able to contact the World Food Program and pass on the information as to which areas were in desperate need of food, and they were helpful. But really no-one else was interested in our interviews which told of terrible atrocities that we were so shocked to hear. Amnesty told us they did not want the interview manuscripts as they already had so much information on Myanmar that they couldn’t process it fast enough. News channels seemed disbelieving when we tried to report such atrocities were taking place. If your research team are interested to know more about those interviews some of our notes here.  http://www.savetherohingya.blogspot.co.uk/p/interview.html One thing of interest to note is that our source stated that the police were burning the Rohingya houses and that suggestions that they were burning their own houses were a complete lie.

Nothing New

Over the following weeks I began to intensively research Burma and the Rohingya in an attempt to get up to speed and understand the problem. I listed some of my research here http://www.savetherohingya.blogspot.co.uk/p/research.html I was amazed to learn that Genocide Watch had issued a genocide emergency alert of stage 7  (current genocidal massacres) for Myanmar http://www.genocidewatch.org/myanmar.html and yet I had heard little to nothing about this in the news. I was also stunned to read a Human Rights Watch report from 2009 that clearly showed the terrible persecution and ethnic cleansing that the Rohingya people had been enduring at the hands of the Burmese government over decades. http://www.hrw.org/reports/2009/05/26/perilous-plight

It soon became apparent to me that what was happening now was an almost exact repeat of what happened in 1991 when the military Junta burnt thousands of Rohingya homes, killed hundreds and rounded up the rest into camps. It seems the motive then was to clear the land for new economic developments. I guess it was easier then to commit such crimes hidden from sight, without the Internet to worry about. But now we have the Internet, and social media, this becomes more complicated for such evil regimes to carry out their atrocities without getting noticed. Just before the last round of cleansing in June the military went door to door to confiscate digital equipment from the Rohinyga, but they didn’t manage to get everything so some photos and video leaked out. This time around before October’s houses were burnt the regime was much more thorough with their confiscation operations to prevent any digital leakage, which has resulted in very little new video coverage emerging of the atrocities as they were taking place, despite the wipe out being on an even bigger scale. But in 2012 the military did not need to carry out the violence themselves, as they did in 1991, but instead propaganda was widely distributed to brainwash the Rakhine monks and turn them into a killing machine which would perform tasks on demand, whilst the military stood and watched, and the government wiped their hands of the matter and professed their innocence.

Ethnic Cleansing

Have you ever seen throughout history a people rise up of their own accord, without provocation or planning, to wipe out an entire race from their neighbourhood in a matter of weeks? This is clearly ethnic cleansing from whichever way you look at it. The term genocide will never be accepted because the public will always find this word too abhorrent to accept and the politicians will always fear the legalities of having to act, and one may argue that what is happening to the Rohingya has only recently resulted in hundreds of deaths rather than thousands. My conclusion is that genocide has been in the planning, and social media has brought about raised awareness and international attention that is helping to stop the process before the plan has been fulfilled. However, these people are now hanging on to their future by a thread, with nowhere to go and no-one coming to their aid. 110,000 have now been driven from their homes and close to one million are now facing blockades which are slowly starving them wherever they may be, either displaced or still in their own homes. Look at the manner in which thousands of them were forcibly removed and driven into camps during June. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YCnj4QmPgTc

 

The Rohingya are now hated by people on all sides who have blatantly declared them as nothing more than viruses that need eradicating. They cannot move to another part of Burma. They have been driven from their homes to live in tents in muddy fields or hiding in boats or on the mountains. They are struggling to get medical assistance, food, clothes and shelter. Neither Bangladesh or Thailand will accept them. Often they try to escape but drown at sea. Hundreds have been arrested never to be seen again. They are denied visits in prison where they have been reported to be suffering from severe torture and often left naked, and even young boys and girls are often arrested. In addition women and girls are frequently taken away to be raped. I compiled a list of recent reports on events in October here: http://www.savetherohingya.blogspot.co.uk/2012_10_01_archive.html

Economic Developments

When looking at who is behind such crimes I believe it important to consider the history and the context. We can see that the Rohingya have suffered a series of clear serious assaults at the hands of the Burmese regime over a period of decades. A list of them is presented here: http://www.asiantribune.com/news/2012/11/03/letter-america-genocide-rohingyas-myanmar-%E2%80%93-part-1  In addition, there are major economic developments planned for this area. It came as no surprise for me to learn that Burma has a new oil and gas pipeline due to open in 2013 to take resources from the Bay of Bengal and also shipped from the Middle East up to China. The pipeline starts in the Arakan state, which is where the Rohingya clearance has been taking place, and passes over to the Kachin state where other human rights violations are also occurring http://www.hrw.org/news/2011/10/18/burma-army-committing-abuses-kachin-state . This document gives a lot of detail regarding the dealings of the oil companies involved : http://www.banktrack.org/manage/ajax/ems_dodgydeals/createPDF/shwe_gas_and_pipelines_projects and further information can be found here http://www.arakanrivers.net/?page_id=139 I also read that India (ONGC) and China (CNPC) were working together on the pipeline, alongside other ‘exploration and production’ operations taking place in the Sudan and Syria. http://blog.project2049.net/2012/07/sino-indian-energy-cooperation-in-burma.html But it seems not only India and China have a stake in this pipeline, other nations do also. Ban Ki-moon stated that it was a ‘win win’ situation for everyone. http://www.mizzima.com/news/world/4039-ban-ki-moon-called-burma-gas-pipeline-a-win-win.html What did he mean by that? This is certainly not a winning situation for the Rohingya, or do they not count?

In addition to the new pipeline, a deep sea port is being built at the port of Sittwe to handle the large oil carrying vessels which will be arriving, and massive development of the Kaladan River is taking place to enable boats to travel from India up to central Burma http://www.arakanrivers.net/?page_id=7474 The impact of the heavy militarisation of the area to assist with these developments can be read about here http://www.arakanrivers.net/?page_id=159 There is also a fancy new technology development zone to be built in Kyaw Pru on the Northern half of Ramree Island. http://youtu.be/gJntaVuritU

This area was recently razed to the ground during the violence and 10,000 people had to flee via boats, many of whom it seems must have drowned at sea because not all made it back to shore. The satellite images of the area were recorded by Human Rights Watch www.hrw.org/sites/default/files/related_material/2012_Burma_Satimage.pdf One of my friends who used to work in Burma sent me this observation

‘Notice in the first satellite image, the farthest out, there is an airport strip west  of the village area that has the burnt out neighbourhood when seen up close. This destroyed Muslim area is on the NE part of Ramree Island within the special economic zone to support industry, logistics and more. Ch Econ Tech Dev video – 00: 45  4:52, The whitened areas are in the zone.  Look at the video, there are 3 zones for business and then supportive. The Muslim area is in the supportive area.’

Channel Four also recently visited this same area and found that the Muslim population had been ‘wiped from the face of the earth’. http://youtu.be/rsP0X2bjzYQ

 

Who is Behind it All?

I have read many reports suggesting that the monk Wirathu has been a key player in the violence. http://www.aljazeera.com/news/asia-pacific/2012/09/201292175339684455.html Just before the violence started monk Wirathu was reportedly visited by Aung Thaung http://m.aljazeera.com/story/20121156292531721  who is the Union Solidarity and Development Party’s secretary as well as the Lower House’s Banks and Monetary Development Committee chair, and a man known to be close to former dictator Than Shwe  http://www2.irrawaddy.org/article.php?art_id=7327 I wonder how much of a stake Than Shwe has in current developments, and question if he isn’t still pulling strings behind the scenes? There have been previous calls for him to stand for his crimes before the ICC http://www.dvb.no/interview/aung-htoo-blc-%E2%80%98than-shwe-fears-the-icc%E2%80%99/12370 I read that Than Shwe’s leadership over the State Supreme Council ensures that he retains final say over the military and also has the ability to overrule both the cabinet and parliament in 2011, but don’t I know if anything has changed since then. http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Southeast_Asia/ME04Ae01.html

What is clear to me is that planned and well organised ethnic cleansing has been taking place, and with the Arakan state still under military control since the state of emergency took was declared in June, there is no way that this could have happened without military complicity. At best, this violence could have been easily prevented by the military had they so decided. I also understand that the Burmese only care about human rights when it is good for business. The release of Aung San Suu Kyi and her subsequent world tour was we all know to buy political favour, and didn’t it work well! Whilst she was dazzling people with her smile the operation to remove the Rohingya began. It was suggested to me that the Burmese idea of democracy is ASSK and the military Junta putting on suits. I believe that was a perfect analysis.

Torture in Prisons

The government may try to blame the violence entirely on the Rakhine Buddhists and hide their own involvement in the matter, but they cannot deny the treatment of the prisoners that they routinely torture in prison. Indeed aren’t there still UN and humanitarian workers still in prison, since they became witnesses to the regime crimes? The United Nations must now insist on full access to the prisons, that all political prisoners and aid workers are freed, and without such steps taken how can the West even begin to suggest that this is a reformed regime? The Rohingya are now at serious risk of elimination. Even Thein Sein stated clearly to the UN that he saw their removal as the only solution to the problem. http://mizzima.com/news/inside-burma/7514-un-rejects-burmas-offer-to-resettle-rohingya.html%20

Future in Your Hands

President Obama your visit to Burma later this month comes at a key moment in time. If business is to take precedence over human rights this will be the last green light that the regime were looking for and they will complete their plan to get rid of their problem without further delay. However if, and only if, the USA lay down the line, that human rights come first, and will not be compromised however great the business deal, then things will change. All rests now on your shoulders Mister President. The future of an entire race. Maybe this meeting will chart the route of future history. Maybe a stand for human rights now will result in the avoidance of the creation of a new and unstoppable Nazi regime. With half of the revenues of the oil pipeline heading the way of the military Junta, and the other half to China, surmounting to many billions of dollars, I dread to think of the future impact of such a regime.

The Rohingya urgently need protection, by an independent peacekeeping force. They need urgent access to aid and medical care. And they need the return of their citizenship which was stolen from them by the dictatorship in 1982 and never returned.

Ethnicity Removed

It has been reported in the media that a new census is taking place in a move towards granting citizenship to the Rohingya. However my Rohingya friend in Sittwe tells me that what is actually happening is that Rohingya are now being tortured into signing that they are Bengali not Rohingya, and some are even tortured in public as a deterrent for others. Those that refuse to sign are being arrested and driven away (clearly for more torture, probably never to be seen again). Just today he told me that people were even arrested and taken away by police from a refugee camp when they refused to sign.

Please do not be blinded by the Burmese government’s lies. Please understand the seriousness of doing businesses with the devil. Please make a stand for human rights. Business built on the back of ethnic cleansing can never be acceptable, however great the business. How sad it was to see you personally giving the ‘green light’ to the USA to invest in Burma immediately following the ethnic cleansing in July http://www.google.com/hostednews/afp/article/ALeqM5gKB86GUltfoXE53jVv5drW5a0t_Q?docId=CNG.826fe8bd777afed3ea0d4aff3a859816.1e1 and how shocking it was to then see that on the very same day in October that homes were being burnt and thousands of new people chased from their land in, fleeing for their lives, the US Deputy Secretary of the US Department of Treasury Neal S. Wolin was shaking hands and smiling with President Thein Sein over business deals http://www.mizzima.com/news/inside-burma/8304-high-us-treasury-official-meets-with-thein-sein.html

Genocide: Worse than War

I researched the topic of genocide and found Daniel Goldhagen’s truly excellent documentary, ‘Genocide: Worse than War’ incredibly informative http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w7cZuhqSzzc
I learnt through it that genocide is always caused by politics, and I understood that it can be stopped, although it happens over and over again. It takes place as a result of a series of decisions. Please watch this documentary. It is long but is may be the best documentary I have ever seen and if its advice is heeded thousands of future lives, or maybe millions, could be saved. Please let this be your defining moment as a truly great man that stopped a genocide, where many others have failed.

True Hero

For my Rohingya friend Aung in Sittwe, a true hero of this world, you are maybe his last hope. Please don’t let him down.

Thank-you for reading. May God grant you wisdom and bring you guidance.

Jamila Hanan
Human Rights Activist, UK
jamilahanan1@gmail.com

https://twitter.com/JamilaHanan
http://jamilahanan.blogspot.co.uk/
http://www.savetherohingya.blogspot.co.uk/
http://www.doctorsinchains.org/
http://www.eye4freedom.org/
http://www.angryarabiya.org/
http://www.medworm.com/

Copyright notice:  Please share and reprint this letter as you wish.

Please also read this letter to Obama from Aung the Rohingya refugee.

Thursday, 8 November 2012

Rohingya protest in Burma from Sittwe Camp

On Thursday 8th November the previously voiceless Rohingya did an amazing thing and protested from inside a refugee camp in Sittwe, Burma and tweeted their photos for the world to see via @aungaungsittwe. In doing so they joined other protests taking place around the world, led by the UK based charity Restless Beings.

These photos have been emailed from the camp and are available for the media to use freely as they wish. Please help to give these poor people the publicity they desperately need right now. If you need further information or higher resolution photos please email jamilahanan1@gmail.com

Tuesday, 30 October 2012

Rohingya: Final Wipe Out?

News is breaking of another clearance of the Rohingya Muslims from the state of Arakan in Burma. This is now looking far worse than the terrible violence in June that left 100000 homeless and many dead. They were given until 25th October to get out of their homes or face violence,  burnings of homes and killings are now in full swing. I have gathered all the news I could find on this here. Please let your governments and media outlets know this is a tragedy happening NOW. (this page will be updated as new links are found on this crisis)

IMPORTANT CLARIFICATION: It has been misreported in the media that this crisis is sectarian clashes. There are NO clashes, the violence is all one sided, this is ethnic cleansing backed by the police, with hatred whipped up against Muslims through state supported propaganda  and this has been clearly stated by excellent independent sources on the ground. Please try to convey this message.

URGENT UPDATE: THOUSANDS ARE STRANDED IN FIELDS AND VILLAGES SURROUNDED BY RAKHINE WAITING TO KILL THEM – THEY HAVE NOWHERE TO GO

NOTE – as of 1st October one of the important news sources which is listed below had its website suspended. Any links below for news.mmsy.info do not therefore currently work. I am trying to find out more about this and will leave the links below as the headlines themselves are important.

1st Nov

Burmese Muslims flock to displacement camps after fresh clashes with Buddhists – video

Best video coverage yet on the conflict. Watch to the end.

31st Oct

“We are not Rohingya/Bagali, We are Kaman” RFA interview with a Kyauk Ni Maw villager

http://news.mmsy.info/news/7414

(Refugee Updates) Arakan state government involuntarily relocated Muslim refugees

http://news.mmsy.info/news/7417

30th Oct

The persecution of the Rohingya: how a benighted minority in Burma suffer at the hands of despots

Children are dying now from starvation.
http://www.independent.co.uk/voices/comment/the-persecution-of-the-rohingya-how-a-benighted-minority-in-burma-suffer-at-the-hands-of-despots-8259990.html

The world must act to protect Burma’s Rohingya from starvation and slaughter

Thousands are being starved to death out of sight.
http://www.independent.co.uk/voices/comment/the-world-must-act-to-protect-burmas-rohingya-from-starvation-and-slaughter-8262073.html

 

Worst Feared for Ramree Islanders as UK Govt Offer Little Hope For Rohingya

Village of 7,000 surrounded by armed gang of 10,000. UK government don’t appear to be doing anything and clearly have full confidence in the Burmese government.
http://www.restlessbeings.org/projects/rohingya/worst-feared-for-ramree-islanders-as-uk-govt-offer-little-hope-for-rohingya
http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201213/cmhansrd/cm121030/debtext/121030-0001.htm#column_141 

Worrying Move to Transport All Refugess to Maungdaw

Rakhine youths have apparently been shipped in to Maungdaw and armed. Now the Rakhine have put out a message to transport all refugees to Maungdaw also. This is a very worrying development.
http://www.twitlonger.com/show/jqvej3

Rakhines Still Trying to Attack Kyaut Ni Maw (at 2:30PM)

Update from village still at risk of attack. Tension building.
http://news.mmsy.info/news/7340 

1000 Rakhines Surround Kyaut Ni Maw, Confronted by the Army

6000 villagers surrounded by killers waiting to die put out a desperate plea for help.
http://news.mmsy.info/news/7306

News of 400 slaughtered

Approximately 400 dead in  Yan Theyk Village, Mrauk U Township killed on 23rd October. As of 28th October many more villagers there will now die without rescue.
http://www.twitlonger.com/show/jqteqi

Lieutenant General Hla Min said, “Rakhine People have more than enough Nationalistic sprit.”

A courageous lieutenant general realizes what is happening to  the Rohingya and speaks out, but will anyone listen?
http://news.mmsy.info/news/7323

Kyauktayan village was under the threat even after the inspection of Lt. General Hla Min.

List of instigators of violence given here. Army general visits village to critisize instigators of violence, then armed gangs gather to attack village next door when general leaves. Army trying to protect village. Problem of access to emergency healthcare.
http://news.mmsy.info/news/7299

Burma Village ‘Under Attack by Petrol Bombs,’ Say Unconfirmed Reports

Reports of petrol attacks, torching of another village.Little food and drink in camps. Scores injured without medical assistance.
http://phuketwan.com/tourism/burma-village-under-attack-petrol-bombs-unconfirmed-reports-16949/

Anti-Muslim Monk Wirathu’s Talk on Arakan Conflict

Wira Thu is one of the monks said to be propagating hatred towards Muslims, and is also said to be working for the government.
http://news.mmsy.info/news/7346

Burma’s displaced Rohingyas in squalid and overcrowded camps

A really dire situation, just got worse.
http://www.radioaustralia.net.au/international/radio/program/asia-pacific/burmas-displaced-rohingyas-in-squalid-and-overcrowded-camps/1038618

‘Myanmar authorities not doing enough to protect Rohingyas’

With many boats stranded at sea HRW suggests that India should do the right thing in providing shelter and pushing other governments to also.
http://zeenews.india.com/news/world/myanmar-authorities-not-doing-enough-to-protect-rohingyas_808392.html

29th Oct

Anti-Rohingya and Muslim Violence Spreads to Karen State

In Pauk Taw 7,000 given until morning to leave field or be killed. Another 3,00 stuck in another field. 15,000 seeking shelter. 2 mosques bombed in Karen state. Refugees not getting aid. Global day of action on 8th November.
http://www.restlessbeings.org/projects/rohingya/anti-rohingya-and-muslim-violence-spreads-to-karen-state

Mass killing and torching houses continued in Arakan State

Pauktaw Townshipn which contains 1,200 homes is ablaze. 53 bloats landed at Ohntaw (Bariza Para). 12 boats with 2,000 refugees landed at Tae Chaung of Akya where they have no aid and are surrounded by boarder police who are abusing them and starving them to death. Rakhine youths are being brought in to Maungdaw Township and armed to kill Muslims.
http://www.kaladanpress.org/v3/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=3935:mass-killing-and-torching-houses-continued-in-arakan-state&catid=155:october-2012&Itemid=2

Heart-broken news received from the ground of Arakan State

21 boats were at sea 5 days without food or drink. Mothers gave birth on boats and died with their babies. Bodies thrown into sea by military. 14 boats allowed to land, 7 taken away by Navy location unknown. 100 died trying to defend mosque in Pike Seik Quarter in Kyawk Phyu.
http://www.rohingyablogger.com/2012/10/heart-broken-news-received-from-ground.html

Rohingya Boatpeople ‘Helped On’ at Sea off Thailand: More Likely to Flee

Boat carrying 100 Rohingya refugees makes it to Thailand waters but is not allowed to land.
http://phuketwan.com/tourism/rohingya-boatpeople-helped-sea-thailand-likely-flee-16947/

Refugees accuse Burmese government of ignoring ethnic cleansing: ‘If we stayed, we would have been killed’

A bell was rang before petrol bombs were thrown on their homes. Firfighters doused homes with petrol.
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/asia/refugees-accuse-burmese-government-of-ignoring-ethnic-cleansing-if-we-stayed-we-would-have-been-killed-8229919.html

Turkey sends humanitarian aid to Arakan State

Although Turkey is sending aid it is very hard to deliver this to the Rohingya people. Expect much of this aid to feed the mouths of the killers, that is what has happened with much aid previously delivered.
http://www.mizzima.com/news/inside-burma/8309-turkey-sends-humanitarian-aid-to-arakan-state.html

16-year-old Muslim boy killed in Kyauktaw

Case report of one boy who was abducted and killed. (there are many more being killed like this)
http://news.mmsy.info/news/7287

Muslims in Yangon’s Thin Gan Gyune Threatened With Arson Attacks

Village at Yangon Thin Gan Gyune has been issued an arson attack warning, message delivered to a school.
http://news.mmsy.info/news/7248

 

28th Oct

Burmese Army Allow Further 2,300 Rohingya to Become Displaced

60 kids left behind fate unknown. Four boats destroyed. Border police torching houses. Rakhine attacking with guns.
In the boats there are dead, sick and women – some with newborn babies. What an inhumane affair. This is an attempt to kill human beings in cold blood. This is an attempt to exterminate Rohingyas from Arakan.’

Foreign Secretary comments on continued violence in Rakhine state, Burma‏

‘We deplore the latest spate of attacks which has caused many casualties, left tens of thousands of people displaced’.
http://www.fco.gov.uk/en/news/latest-news/?view=News&id=827528982

 

27th Oct

HRW: Burma: New Violence in Arakan State

‘Human Rights Watch fears the death toll is far higher based on allegations from witnesses fleeing scenes of carnage and the government’s well-documented history of underestimating figures.’
http://www.hrw.org/news/2012/10/26/burma-new-violence-arakan-state
Damage Assessment Summary for Kyauk Pyu, based on satellite imagery recorded on morning of 25 October 2012 (note this is just one area that has been burnt, there are others)
http://www.hrw.org/news/2012/10/26/damage-assessment-summary-kyauk-pyu-satellite-imagery

Burma: ‘Entire Neighbourhood Has Simply Disappeared’

Unusually accurate reporting from the BBC. Listen carefully.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-20108090

ROHINGYA CLEANSING CONTINUED IN ARAKAN UNDER STATE PROGRAMME, U.N. PEACEKEEPING FORCE MOST URGENT

Desperate plea from Rohingya organisations around the world. Confirmation of report that firefighters doused flames with petrol, and police and army backing of crimes.
http://www.kaladanpress.org/v3/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=3932:rohingya-cleansing-continued-in-arakan-under-state-programme-un-peacekeeping-force-most-urgent-&catid=23:rohingya&Itemid=32

Appeal by a US Physician to the State Department

‘I propose the US take the lead in negotiating a facilitated exodus for the Rohingya who chose to leave. The OIC has proposed ~200 million dollars in relief…Please don’t let this be another Bosnia, Nazi Germany and Rwanda where the international community steps in only in time to dig up or bury the dead.’
http://news.mmsy.info/news/6997

Refugees Run Out of Food and Fuel in Sin Tat Maw

Brave villagers seek to give refuge to 3,500 arriving in boats but they risk attack on their own village to do so and do not have enough food to feed everyone. These refugees are waiting to die.
http://news.mmsy.info/news/7076

Urgent collective international action needed to protect the Rohingya

‘Scores of terrorized villagers fleeing in boats have reportedly been drowned; and many dead bodes are now floating in the sea and rivers. The resultant effects of the mass atrocities, in terms of human and material loss, are too great. In particular, the port city of Kyaukpyu has now been ethnically cleansed of the people of Islamic faith.’
http://www.kaladanpress.org/v3/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=3933:urgent-collective-international-action-needed-to-protect-the-rohingya&catid=23:rohingya&Itemid=32

No permission to land Rohingya load boats in Maungdaw south

‘The Nasaka (border police) personnel are not giving permission local people to give any help to boats; foods, water, fuel and medicines. In the boats, there are female and children, accompany with elderly person.’

News Report by Myanmar’s Islamic Religious Affairs Council on Arakan Terror

Translated status report of crimes from previous day.

26th Oct

Update from excellent independent sources on ground:
“26th October am: multiple boats, which included some dead woman and children, with ~8000 Muslim survivors from KyaukPyu assault came ashore in Maungdaw South. International relief teams responded with many trucks full of relief supplies and provisions but Military Border Forces prohibited any of this relief from reaching these survivors. Border forces allowed only 4 boats ashore while photos were taken of Border Force showing assistance. The remaining boats, which included dead women and babies, were rerouted over 40 miles up the Naaf River to Taungbro, which is ~100 yards from Bangladesh where there is no international relief.”
http://www.twitlonger.com/show/jplf53

Direct update from excellent source on ground in Arakan state:

“Though Rakhine Buddhist civilians and monks have threatened anyone giving aid to Rohingya, international relief and local Muslims has responded to large number of boats with as many as 10,000 Muslims escaping from at least Kyauk Pyu…landing in Sittwe and Maungdaw South with dead babies, children and women included. Many boats havebeen turned away by Rakhine Buddhists in Sittwe.”
http://www.twitlonger.com/show/jpgulf

Violence Spreads To Kaman Ethnicity Whilst 10,000 Rohingya Are Rendered Displaced

Newly born baby + mother shot. 10000 adrift at see. Mass grave 200 bodies discovered.
http://www.restlessbeings.org/projects/rohingya/violence-spreads-to-kaman-ethnicity-whilst-10000-rohingya-are-rendered-displaced

Hundreds Killed, Thousands Floating on the Sea Facing Starvation

State sponsored ethnic cleansing. Confirmed reports of hundreds killed. Mass grave with 200 buried.
http://www.rohingyablogger.com/2012/10/hundreds-killed-thousands-of-rohingya.html

Rohingya campaigners accuse Burma of failing to stop deaths

Burmese government complicit in a “final clearance of the Rohingya people”. 

The Navy Refuses Ethnic Kaman Refugees in Sittwe

5000 to 6000 refugees with nowhere to go,, including woman in labour, starving to death.
http://news.mmsy.info/news/6990

 

Yaan-Byay Township’s Kaman Muslims’ Block are being set fire now

Not just Rohingya Muslims but Kamam Muslims too are now being removed.

 

Official Arakan Death Toll Rises to 112

When even the official government spin doctors are announcing a death toll of 112 in 5 days you know something very serious is happening. Of cause for alarm is a state government announcement that the authorities would not allow more evacuees to enter the city [of Sittwe which is where all the boats of refugess were heading, the only place they had to go].
http://www.irrawaddy.org/archives/17401

US, UN React to Arakan Violence

The USA have pledgede $2.73 million for displaced people in the Arakan State. I guess that would build a nice house or two in the USA.
http://www.irrawaddy.org/archives/17365

High US Treasury official meets with Thein Sein

Whilst the Rohingya were being massacred on Thursday, US officials were meeting with Thein Sein to discuss trade and the removal of all economic sanctions.
http://www.mizzima.com/news/inside-burma/8304-high-us-treasury-official-meets-with-thein-sein.html

Breaking News of Pauk Taw Township, Arakan

4 villages burnt at 12.30am. Thousands homeless fled to sea. Boats told not to land until they reach town where Rakhine are waiting to kill them. People in boats adrift at sea for days without food or drink.
http://www.rohingyablogger.com/2012/10/breaking-news-of-arakan-myanmar-pauk.html

25th Oct

UN Statement

‘large scale loss of human lives’
http://www.un.org/sg/statements/index.asp?nid=6391 

 

360 dead and destroy 3500 homes in renewed clashes in Arakan State

More than 200 bodies in mass grave at Maruk-U
http://www.kaladanpress.org/v3/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=3931:360-dead-and-destroy-3500-homes-in-renewed-clashes-in-arakan-state&catid=155:october-2012&Itemid=2

Please see @Aungaungsittwe and https://plus.google.com/photos/101220847155228357407/albums/5803174743090174673?banner=pwa for more recent images from Burma

Latest Images from Burma on the Rohingya Crisis

http://www.restlessbeings.org/projects/rohingya/latest-images-from-burma-on-the-rohingya-crisis

 

International Response May Be Too Late for Rohingya

Reports from 5 townships and sad news that 3 of RestlessBeings sources have also been killed in Burma.

Burma Massacre Fears: Reports of Phase II Expulsion of Unwanted Rohingya

Two Rohingya callers report. 90 herded into boat then men shot women raped. 1000 fled into mountains around Sittwe.
http://phuketwan.com/tourism/burma-massacre-fears-reports-phase-expulsion-unwanted-rohingya-16920/

 

Kyaukpyu’s Muslim Quarter Razed to the Ground

Noone left in Muslim quarter. All heading to Sittwe in boats, or killed, with weapons such as machetes. Eleven admitted to hospital.
http://www.irrawaddy.org/archives/17309

 

Students call for removal of Rohingya villages

More than 800 students joined a rally to call for an end to “studying with terrorist Bengalis” and for the removal of Muslim villages on the road to the university.
http://www.mizzima.com/news/inside-burma/8287-students-call-for-removal-of-rohingya-villages.html

Muslims in Myae Pon are starving, Chief Police Officer Is Leading the Violence

Refugees fear death by starvation.Reports that Police Chief Thar San is leading the killing.
http://news.mmsy.info/news/6896

 

Police accused of provocation in Burma violence

A Burmese Muslim politician says local police in Burma’s Rakhine state are instigating violence
http://www.radioaustralia.net.au/international/2012-10-25/police-accused-of-provocation-in-burma-violence/1036154

Violence in Arakan Spread to Kyaut Taw Today

At 6:30 AM, Rakhines have started burning down houses at Lat Saung Kaut village. Those fleeing the area were shot by the Rakhine Army. local witness reports 7 deaths.
http://news.mmsy.info/news/6912

 

Three Ferries Carrying Muslim Refugees Were Attacked in Arakan: Many Died

3 ferries reported as attacked the previous day, and victims including women chopped up. One 10 year old boy escaped.
http://news.mmsy.info/news/6905

 

Setting fire and killing Rohingyas resumes in Kyauk Taw

Burning of 20 houses began at 5.30am whilst Muslims praying in the mosque. Two shot dead, one seriously injured.
http://www.rohingyablogger.com/2012/10/setting-fire-and-killing-rohingyas.html

Radio Free Asia’s Interview With A Muslim Fleeing To The Sea

Interview with guy in his boat who reported 7000 were at sea trying to flee the violence, chased out of their homes by Rakhines with swords. All homes burnt. He saw 3 youths shot dead.
http://news.mmsy.info/news/6959

 

24th Oct

Ultimatum issued to get out of houses by 25th October 

Reports of firefighters arriving with tank full of petrol instead of water to put on blazing homes.

 

Security in Pak Taw Township Now Uncertain

Village told by secuirty forces they could not be protected. Seven men went to hire ferries to help villagers escape but the Rakhines arrested them. ‘Since they are in Rakhines’ hands, they won’t come alive. Their bodies won’t even come back.’
http://news.mmsy.info/news/6908

 

News of Rohingya in Pauktaw, Mre Bon and Kaukphyu Tsp

Pauktaw: Men slaughtered in front of women and children in river, young boy espaped. Kyauk Phyu: 600 killed trying to escape by boat.  Mre Bon: 600 homes burnt, deaths unknown.

 

Rohingyas Float Dead in River As Fish 

3000 peoples’ homes burnt to ground. 100 corpses floating after boat overturned just one 13 year old escaped. 1300 stuck on river bank got just a few hours to escape or be killed.
More than 15,000 floating in boats fate unknown. Rakhines planning to kill the people in the boats.

 

Not Expecting to See Sunlight – 2000 Rohingya Await Death

In Minbya, the only remaining Rohingya village, Lombaichar, has 850 Rohingya homes which are now completely encircled by a 7,000 strong Rakhine force. 2000 remaining Rohingya do not expect to see sunlight.
http://www.restlessbeings.org/projects/rohingya/not-expecting-to-see-sunlight-2000-rohingya-await-death
Above article ‘expressed fear that Kyauk Pru island town has been comletely over-run – leaving 10,000 displaced after all houses were razed and burnt to ashes’. That’s got to be good news for this project about to begin:

 

300 Trapped Awaiting Death

Other than death, other options seem completely unlikely.
http://www.restlessbeings.org/projects/rohingya/300-rohingya-trapped-awaiting-death
 

 Hundreds Killed and Thousands of Homes Destroyed in Arakan State

Eyewitness account of approximately 100 + 350 women and children + 200 (total 650) slaughtered, 600 + 100 + 600 homes burnt (total 1300 homes), plus people jumping in river with nowhere to go.

Burma’s Rohingya face ‘new wave of violence’

‘suggests that a concerted campaign has begun to drive Rohingya out of this district’

Latest News on Rakhine Terror in Arakan State (Oct 24 @ 11: 30AM)

Eyewitness reports, people chopped up with swords, women and children put on boats but Navy threaten to shoot them. Fire on four sides, people with nowhere to go.

Rakhine Student Union in Sittwe to Remove Muslims from Villages and Schools

Rally gathering now in Sittwe.
http://news.mmsy.info/news/6814

Burma clashes spread to new districts

Even the government says 1,000 homes have been burnt (so it must be bad!)
http://www.rmcg.org.uk/news-p34

Anti-Muslim Hate Letters Spreading in Yangon Outskirts

Hate letters are now being distributed by the Patriotic Youth Network with propaganda to turn people against the Rohingya Muslims
http://news.mmsy.info/news/6832

 

23rd Oct

More than 800 houses burn out in Minbya and Maruk-U

Rohingya Unrest Continues – 100 killed

100 feared dead, 26 raped, 200,000 stranded in homes with nowhere to go.

Rakhine Terroristsand RNDP Party are Meeting in Mrauk Oo and Minbya Tsps for Further Killing of Rohingya

Police tell Rohingya to leave villages or be killed

16 Oct Demonstration Against Muslim Office: Monks Whipped Up in the Hatred (preparation for massacre?)

Leaked video footage from June 2012

http://www.rohingyablogger.com/2012/10/a-documentary-video-on-genocides.html

Remember Rohingya, a Restless Beings Report

http://www.restlessbeings.org/projects/rohingya/remember-rohingya-a-restless-beings-report

Petition

http://www.change.org/petitions/us-state-department-must-stop-rohingya-ethnic-cleansing-in-burma-initiate-sending-un-peace-keeping-force?utm_campaign=action_box&utm_medium=twitter&utm_source=share_petition#

Monday, 23 July 2012

#SaveTheRohingya Action 3

#SaveTheRohingya Action 3.0

Write to Catherine Ashton vice-president and high representative of the European Union for foreign affairs and security policy.

email: COMM-SPP-HRVP-ASHTON@ec.europa.eu
tweet: @eu_eeas 
interact on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/EuropeanExternalActionService (not possible to send message but you can comment to their posts)

Tell her it is not acceptable that the EU is strengthening ties and dropping sanctions with a country whose government is ethnically cleansing part of its population.

The Rohingya Muslims have been living in Bangladesh for hundreds of years. Their citizenship was removed in 1982. They are denied many human rights including the right to get married. Thousands of their homes have recently been destroyed by fire. Hundreds have been killed by police instigated violence and thousands are now homeless, in hiding, in desperate need of food and medical assistance.

Please draw attention to the following:

Genocide Alert Level 7 (extermination) issued by Genocide Watch
Human Rights Watch
Amnesty International
World Food Program
Channel Four

The Burmese Prime Minister Thein Sein made his policy on ethnic cleansing clear, when he told the UN:

‘We will take responsibility for our ethnic people, but it is impossible to accept the illegally entered Rohingyas, who are not our ethnicity,’

‘We will send them away if any third country would accept them,” Thein Sein said. “This is what we are thinking is the solution to the issue.’ 

Background Info on EU Position

An article published by the Anadolu Agency on 22nd July states that the EU ‘is making diplomatic initiatives so the massacre of Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar ends’, but we could find no such evidence of this elsewhere or on the EU website.

These are all the recent statements from Catherine Ashton’s office regarding Myanmar:

17th April 2012 – Catherine Ashton EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and Vice President of the European Commission Speech on Myanmar European Parliament Strasbourg

‘We will encourage European companies to look for opportunities in Burma.’

27th April 2012 – Catherine Ashton visits Burma/Myanmar to open a new chapter in the relationship

‘The European Union welcomes the remarkable changes in Burma/Myanmar and has decided to open a new chapter in our relations. We have suspended the sanctions with the exception of the arms embargo.’

28th April 2012 – HR/VP Catherine Ashton opens the EU office in Burma/Myanmar

‘I hope you will see our office as a symbol of the European Union, its 27 Member States, its institutions that demonstrate the commitment of the EU to this country and to the political process that is now underway.’

14th May 2012 – Meeting between President Barroso and U Shwe Mann, Speaker of Lower House of the Parliament of Myanmar

‘in line with the recent decisions to suspend the restrictive measures, the new package of €150 million in development assistance for 2012/2013 and the opening of a diplomatic presence in Myanmar.’


13th June – Statement by the spokesperson of High Representative Catherine Ashton on the crisis in Northern Rakhine State in Myanmar

We welcome the priority which the Myanmar Government is giving to dealing with all ethnic conflicts. We very much welcome the measured response reflected in the President’s statement.’

15th June – Joint statement by EU High Representative Catherine Ashton and EU Trade Commissioner Karel De Gucht on Burma-Myanmar

‘We welcome the decision by the International Labour Organisation (ILO) to suspend their resolution against Myanmar/Burma condemning labour practices in the country’





Friday, 20 July 2012

#SaveTheRohingya Action 2

Whilst the world media obsessed over the distraction of Aung San Suu Kyi, quietly ignored back in Burma 90,000 people were displaced from their homes, which were burnt to the ground, in a mass act of genocide (disguised as sectarian strife) against the Rohingyan Muslim people.

http://www.genocidewatch.org/myanmar.html
http://www.hrw.org/news/2012/07/05/burma-mass-arrests-raids-rohingya-muslims

The whole world it seems can’t wait to get into Burma, to do business, and a major new gas pipeline is being built from the Bay of Bengal across to China due to be finished by 2013, which may or may not be adding to the excitement.

Many of the Rohingya tried to escaped with their lives by taking to sea, only to get turned back at the Bangladesh border. Some boats disappeared. Others were reported to have been shot from  helicopters and destroyed.

Now we have a source on the ground who told us everyone had run out of food. Good news is that as of today, 20th July, we have learnt that some food is now getting through to the Rohingya, distributed by the WFP, but many thousands are still hungry and in desperate need. In addition our source says more medical assistance is urgently required as there are many injuries and sick people. We have been told that there is some medical help but more is required since people are dying every day from injuries and disease.

These people desperately need protection, food, medical care and homes rebuilding, as quickly as possible. This requires money. We would like to be able to help raise funds for the Rohingya so we have been writing to DEC to ask them to launch an emergency appeal. The problem is that DEC will not launch an appeal until the main stream media has been reporting the crisis for a number of days.

On Monday 23rd July Restless Beings are holding a press conference on behalf of the Rohingya people to raise awareness of the current crisis. It is important that all the UK press attend. Please write and tweet to them all, and ask them to send someone to the press conference to give this mass act of genocide the urgent coverage it should be getting. We have listed some news sources below for you to contact, but you may wish to contact more.

Please also write and tweet to the UK government who should also be sending someone to the press conference to find out more and voicing this issue as a matter of urgent and grave concern. We have listed some details below but if you live in the UK please also contact your own MP.

Press Conference 23rd July London: http://www.restlessbeings.org/events/rohingya-the-human-story

#SaveTheRohingya Action 2.1

Update: The BBC finally gave a bit of online coverage to the crisis on 20th July here but it was sadly lacking in detail of easily verifiable facts (such as 90000 displaced and hungry, and thousands of homes burnt to the ground).

Write to the BBC ask for urgent detailed television coverage on the Rohingya genocide and ask them to attend the Restless Beings press conference in London 23rd July.

Contact BBC News channel here: http://news.bbc.co.uk/newswatch/ukfs/hi/newsid_3950000/newsid_3959100/3959111.stm
Find more departments to contact here:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/newswatch/ukfs/hi/newsid_3950000/newsid_3959100/3959111.stm
General:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/newswatch/ukfs/hi/newsid_4030000/newsid_4032600/4032695.stm
Radio:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/newswatch/ukfs/hi/newsid_3960000/newsid_3964500/3964513.stm
Twitter:
@BBCNEWS

#SaveTheRohingya Action 2.2

Write to the Sky News ask for urgent coverage on the Rohingya genocide and ask them to attend the Restless Beings  press conference in London 23rd July.

Email: news@sky.com
Twitter: @SkyNews
More: http://news.sky.com/info/contact-ushttp://news.sky.com/info/contact-us

#SaveTheRohingya Action 2.3

Write to the the Daily Mail ask for urgent coverage on the Rohingya genocide and ask them to attend the Restless Beings  press conference in London 23rd July.

Email: news@dailymail.co.uk

Twitter: @MailOnline @DMAILnews

#SaveTheRohingya Action 2.4

Write to the Independent and ask for urgent coverage on the Rohingya genocide and ask them to attend the Restless Beings press conference in London 23rd July.

Email: newseditor@independent.co.uk
Twitter: @Independent @IndyWorld
Independent Journalists on Twitter
More: http://www.independent.co.uk/incoming/contact-us-759589.html


#SaveTheRohingya Action 2.5

Write to the the UK government ask them to voice urgent concerns about the genocide of the Rohingya in Burma and ask them to attend the Restless Beings  press conference in London 23rd July to find out more about the current situation on the ground.

Prime Minister’s Office 10 Downing Street
Twitter: @Number10gov @WilliamJHague

Email Secretary of State Mr William Hague: haguew@parliament.uk
Email Foreign Affairs Committee: foraffcom@parliament.uk

If in the UK, contact your MP.

When you have completed these tasks please tweet to the #SaveTheRohingya tag to tell everyone and also paste to Facebook to ask others to do the same. Please also tweet @SaveTheRohingya with your progress.

If we all act together we may be able to get the Rohingya the help they desperately need!

Please help to #SaveTheRohingya

Please check back tomorrow for day 3 of actions.
If you missed action 1.5 it is here – please do that too!
Wondering what this is all about? You can read about the launch of the campaign and what we are doing here.

Save The Rohingya (Muslims) of Myanmar/Burma from Genocide


Save The Rohingya (Muslims) of Myanmar/Burma from Genocide

The Rohingya (Muslims) of Myanmar/Burma are undergoing a horrific act of GENOCIDE by the Burmese Rakhine (Buddhist), Military (Junta) and Government, with approximately 10,000 KILLED in just 4 WEEKS (and 40,000 killed in 2012 ALONE!) according to reports, scores KIDNAPPED and taken to CONCENTRATION CAMPS, their women RAPED, homes and mosques being BURNED, and they are being refused asylum in neighbouring Bangaldesh

THIS IS A SERIOUS HUMANITARIAN CRISIS THAT NEEDS THE MOST URGENT ATTENTION AND ACTION

the “United Nations” for what its worth has labelled it one of the worst acts of genocide


AUNG SAN SUU KYI COMPLICIT IN HER SILENCE — Ironically, Burma’s long persecuted opposition party, “the National League for ‘DEMOCRACY'”, and its Leader – the infamous Aung San Suu Kyi (released in November, 2010 after 21 years under house arrest) – have FAILED to take a stance or any action on this act of GENOCIDE, with many members of this very so-called “democratic” party actually supporting the GENOCIDE of the Rohingya (after having ironically fought for “democracy” for decades).

A CALL FOR BURMA TO BE LIKE “ISRAEL” — “Party Head Dr. Aye Maung, who had welcomed Suu Kyi’s win in parliamentary by-elections in April “as a great chance for all of us to change Burma to a democratic country,” recently called for Burma “to be like Israel” — apparently a reference to the oppressive controls placed on Palestinians to ‘protect’ Israelis.” (more in Francis Wade’s article: http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2012/07/05/high_minded_bigots?page=0%2C0)

MORE INFORMATION —

– An insight into this situation, with some political and historical context: www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2012/07/05/high_minded_bAigots?page=0,0

– A report from someone who managed to escape this HORROR from Maung Ni Village: http://www.restlessbeings.org/projects/rohingya/concentration-camps-and-systematic-rape-rohingya-under-persecution

– More information on the plight of the Rohingya refugees in Myanmar/Burma: http://www.restlessbeings.org/projects/rohingya/rohingya-the-forgotten-refugees

::: PLEASE SPREAD, SHARE, READ UP, RAISE AWARENESS, AND JOIN ACTION CAMPAIGNS :::

Twitter: #Rohingya #RestlessBeings #Burma #Myanmar

— with Rahima Begum.

Dear President Obama,

I am a refugee; a victim of the Burmese regime and Rakhine authority. I have been writing articles for Tim King of Salem News since June regarding the violence in the Arakan State.

We the Rohingya people welcome you warmly and are highly grateful for your visit to our country; it is essential for the transition to democracy in Burma.

When you were elected the first time, I was one of the happiest people because it signified a new page not only in American history but also in modern historical records, an expansion of the definition of democracy, a model for a multi-cultural society.

After the Second World War, Cold War and other ideological clashes that caused the loss of millions of lives all over the world, natural disasters swept away the lives of millions more and an increase in the world’s population saw a thirst for the pure water of peace and justice. Ultra-nationalism, racism, fascism, communism, terrorism, socialism and dictatorship are nowhere welcomed by modern man. The majority of scholars believe that democracy is the best solution for us all.

Increasing populations, advancing technology, shrinking resources, access to information and knowledge plus competing economies now challenge world leaders to solve various problems. It is time now for world leaders to reflect on their capacity regarding world peace and justice.

The United States of America became a single superpower which could lead the world towards globalisation, internationalism and peaceful cooperation. I wish you will be able to give a speech to the world about peace as this coming New Year’s greeting.

Burma and Democracy

Every deed results in a consequence and every person should get his or her wages at the end of their work. ‘You work we benefit’ is a communist mentality.

Before British colonization, Burma had nothing: no proper education system, no suitable communication system, isolated from the rest of the world. When American people were celebrating their 111th year of independence, Burma became a colony of the British. With the help of the British, the Burmese were introduced to the Western concept of democracy.

After independence, Burma became a parliamentary democratic country during which period Burma became like a tiger in the Asian region. But unfortunately, when dictator Ne Win took power, slowly it became one of the poorest countries in the world.

Rohingya and Burma

We the Rohingya, an indigenous group, are treated inhumanely in this country. One would hope at this rare opportunity to highlight some important issues, that I hope may be included as serious negotiation points with the Burmese high ranking officials and decision making bodies within the mission of the United States. Our lives in the Rakhine state are currently unbearable, we are completely helpless human beings. Since I believe the details of the Rohingya situation are already known by US officials, I will simply highlight some points in brief on behalf of my people:

  • Rohingya are not allowed to move freely from one village to another, or one township to another, or one district to another, or from the Rakhine state to the rest of Burma.
  • The government places many restrictions on us to make our lives difficult that would not be accepted anywhere else in the world.
  • All government officials, in particular the Rakhine, are specifically trained to discriminate, single out, oppress, mistreat, mishandle, neglect, overlook, avoid and disregard the Rohingya people. They act with all sorts of totally unacceptable and impatient behaviours,  mistreating people in atrocious ways. These staff are recruited and assigned by tyrannical governors that are still widespread across the region.
  • Such inhuman coordinated motivations humiliate, degrade and frustrate the entire Rohingya population before the eyes of all the other ethnic groups.
  • In regard to movement restrictions, trade and commerce within the Rohingya localities has now reached level zero.
  • Because of land confiscations, many more Rohingya farmers have been made landless and they are now forced to wander about the region.
  • For the last 60 years, consecutive military governments have launched ethnic cleansing operations to remove the Rohinga people.
  • Since the year of 1994 onward, some of the wandering people, who were jobless, homeless, uneducated and hopeless, often forced into criminality, frequently with chronic diseases, were recruited by secret agents who offered improved livelihoods in the Rakhine state.
  • The military not only confiscated land but they also seized cattle and property owned by the Rohingya.
  • The Rohingya were forced to build villages for migratory people and construct buildings such as pagodas, monasteries and roads without any compensation.
  • Due to marriage restrictions, Rohingya people have to face a social penalty and pay fines from time to time. Although there are many ethnicities throughout the Rakhine state and the rest of Burma, no other race is restricted regarding marriage except the Rohingya people in the Rakhine state.

We the Rohingya have been living under the shadow of fear and terror, oppression, exploitation, injustice, unfairness, prejudice, extrajudicial punishment, racial discrimination and other countless inhuman mistreatment,  which are a combination of works from both Rakhine chauvinists and the Union  government, for more than sixty long years in areas such as job employment, opportunities, health care, social work, land check points, steamer and boat ports, mountain passes, airports,  immigration offices, municipal offices, revenue offices, education departments, farmlands, distributions and so on.

Because of more than 6 decades long of oppressive ruling circumstances and regrettably, racially designed ethnic cleansing operations under several banners sponsored by the Burmese successive governments and aided by Rakhine ultra-nationalists, this has resulted in the forced exodus of more than one million Rohingya Muslims who sought refuge outside Burma,  the internal dislocation of at least 2/3 million, and the death of another 100,000 as per the universal declaration of human rights.

Rohingya Love Rakhine Brothers and Sisters  

Whilst Rohingya people have been loving the Rakhine brothers and sisters as their own, few Rakhine nationalists from either part of the state have shown common respect, feelings of love, ample sympathy, communal understanding and equal recognition to the Rohingya people throughout history.  Now it is time for Rakhine nationalists to learn. People such as politicians, historians, scholars, government staff, students, school teachers, open-minded monks and all community relevant dignitaries, must learn how  to  step  closer  to  build  constructive  approaches  as per the advice of international organizations and the dignitaries who have recently paid goodwill visits to Myanmar including the Secretary of State Hilary Clinton and Prime Minister Sheik Hasina of Bangladesh.
    
Today  the entire  Rohingya  people  are  afraid  of  being  harassed,  physically  tortured, molested, and burned, looted and persecuted, and they fear their villages and belongings being set on fire due to the absence of fair security provided by the Union of the Central Government, where only Rakhine police are  equipped by weapons in the Rohingya populated areas in Rakhine state.

Recent Genocidal Movement Against Rohingya 

Since May 2012,  the Burmese regime and Rakhine State authority have been continuously killing the Rohingya , burning their houses, looting their properties that caused 150,000 IDP refugees, and nearly one million people are now living under a blockade and are facing starvation. The regime implements a new type of terrorism, fascism, and Buddhist ultra-nationalism in the name of the democracy process.

President Thein Sein opposed international humanitarian aids pointing to public desire as his excuse. The word democracy is being misused against democracy. With the votes of 60%, killing the 10% minority becomes legal according to Thein Sein’s government.

Save the Rohingya

In the Burmese democratic process, thousands of Rohingya lives, properties, and rights have being sacrificed, and yet the Rohingya issue was the first issue which pushed international human rights activists to put pressure on the regime towards democracy.

President Obama, you have the power of eloquence, intellectual and technical methods to solve this issue easily. As a world leader, I believe you could help resolve this issue and in doing so you would be a role model for the rest of the world.

I personally beg you and your government to save the Rohingya people and help remove racism from Burma, which results in terrible acts both regionally and internationally.

I believe the lives of the Rohingya in Arakan State are as bad as the lives of those in the concentration camps of Hitler. Could you please come and have a look at us?  We believe that your visit could help change the course of world history especially in regards to Southeast Asian regional developments.

Yours Sincerely,
Aung Aung Oo
(location removed for safety)
Sittwe(Akyab)
Burma

Copyright notice:  Please share and reprint this letter as you wish.

Please also read my letter to Obama here

Monday, 12 November 2012

Letter to Obama: A Plea for the Rohingya

Monday 12th November

Dear President Obama,

I find myself a human rights activist. I never set out to be one. I just got so sick of seeing injustice in the world I decided to start speaking out and doing what I can to help people which has led me here. I live in the UK. I am also a web developer, which comes in handy when campaigning for justice.

I cried with joy when you were first elected. Inspired like so many others, hopeful that you would bring change to the world. But like many others I also became disillusioned over your first term in office. I knew you had an uphill battle and couldn’t change the world over night, but America’s lack of support for Palestinian human rights and especially the people of Gaza has been more than disappointing. I cannot understand why Guantanamo continues to exist. And hypocrisy over Bahrain is so upsetting when I see my dear friends suffering daily under a cloud of tear gas on an island run by police thugs, suppressed by a regime you continue to excuse and even support.

Renewed Hope

However, like many others, I’m ready to give you another chance. Yes you are not my president, I don’t have a vote, but we all know that the President of the United States has the power to start wars, and sometimes end them. I figure you are less likely to bomb Iran than the other guy, so you would have got my vote. Your tears at your after party talk seemed sincere and touched by heart. We all need hope, its a powerful thing. I have renewed my hope in you.

And I am not the only one who has put their hope in you. So has my Rohingyan friend in Burma. He is somewhere undercover, likely in a refugee camp in Sittwe, bravely gathering information from the ground and keeping a link open with the rest of the world via Twitter @aungaungsittwe https://twitter.com/aungaungsittwe He does so at great risk to himself, but he doesn’t mind that. He tells me that he doesn’t care if he lives or dies, to be dead in Hell he would not mind if he could see his people win their rights.

Green Bananas

I first got to learn about the Rohingya just this Summer. The apparent ‘riots’ had just begun in June, when a friend contacted me about their plight which she had learnt about through the fabulous grassroots charity Restless Beings based in London http://www.restlessbeings.org/projects/rohingya . She asked me if I could do something to help her help them, since she knew I was a human rights campaigner. I said if you want me to help, go find a source on the ground from whom we can learn the truth as to what is happening (kind of hoping she wouldn’t come back because I really had my hands full with daily atrocities happening in Bahrain). But within a few days she came back with the telephone number of a Rohingya man living in Arakan state. He was a village leader who had been collecting information from all over the area. We interviewed him over a number of calls. He was living in fear, his village had run out of food and they had been eating green bananas, but even the green bananas had run out he told us. Children were dying of starvation. No one dared to leave their homes for fear that they would be killed. We were able to contact the World Food Program and pass on the information as to which areas were in desperate need of food, and they were helpful. But really no-one else was interested in our interviews which told of terrible atrocities that we were so shocked to hear. Amnesty told us they did not want the interview manuscripts as they already had so much information on Myanmar that they couldn’t process it fast enough. News channels seemed disbelieving when we tried to report such atrocities were taking place. If your research team are interested to know more about those interviews some of our notes here.  http://www.savetherohingya.blogspot.co.uk/p/interview.html One thing of interest to note is that our source stated that the police were burning the Rohingya houses and that suggestions that they were burning their own houses were a complete lie.

Nothing New

Over the following weeks I began to intensively research Burma and the Rohingya in an attempt to get up to speed and understand the problem. I listed some of my research here http://www.savetherohingya.blogspot.co.uk/p/research.html I was amazed to learn that Genocide Watch had issued a genocide emergency alert of stage 7  (current genocidal massacres) for Myanmar http://www.genocidewatch.org/myanmar.html and yet I had heard little to nothing about this in the news. I was also stunned to read a Human Rights Watch report from 2009 that clearly showed the terrible persecution and ethnic cleansing that the Rohingya people had been enduring at the hands of the Burmese government over decades. http://www.hrw.org/reports/2009/05/26/perilous-plight

It soon became apparent to me that what was happening now was an almost exact repeat of what happened in 1991 when the military Junta burnt thousands of Rohingya homes, killed hundreds and rounded up the rest into camps. It seems the motive then was to clear the land for new economic developments. I guess it was easier then to commit such crimes hidden from sight, without the Internet to worry about. But now we have the Internet, and social media, this becomes more complicated for such evil regimes to carry out their atrocities without getting noticed. Just before the last round of cleansing in June the military went door to door to confiscate digital equipment from the Rohinyga, but they didn’t manage to get everything so some photos and video leaked out. This time around before October’s houses were burnt the regime was much more thorough with their confiscation operations to prevent any digital leakage, which has resulted in very little new video coverage emerging of the atrocities as they were taking place, despite the wipe out being on an even bigger scale. But in 2012 the military did not need to carry out the violence themselves, as they did in 1991, but instead propaganda was widely distributed to brainwash the Rakhine monks and turn them into a killing machine which would perform tasks on demand, whilst the military stood and watched, and the government wiped their hands of the matter and professed their innocence.

Ethnic Cleansing

Have you ever seen throughout history a people rise up of their own accord, without provocation or planning, to wipe out an entire race from their neighbourhood in a matter of weeks? This is clearly ethnic cleansing from whichever way you look at it. The term genocide will never be accepted because the public will always find this word too abhorrent to accept and the politicians will always fear the legalities of having to act, and one may argue that what is happening to the Rohingya has only recently resulted in hundreds of deaths rather than thousands. My conclusion is that genocide has been in the planning, and social media has brought about raised awareness and international attention that is helping to stop the process before the plan has been fulfilled. However, these people are now hanging on to their future by a thread, with nowhere to go and no-one coming to their aid. 110,000 have now been driven from their homes and close to one million are now facing blockades which are slowly starving them wherever they may be, either displaced or still in their own homes. Look at the manner in which thousands of them were forcibly removed and driven into camps during June. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YCnj4QmPgTc

 

The Rohingya are now hated by people on all sides who have blatantly declared them as nothing more than viruses that need eradicating. They cannot move to another part of Burma. They have been driven from their homes to live in tents in muddy fields or hiding in boats or on the mountains. They are struggling to get medical assistance, food, clothes and shelter. Neither Bangladesh or Thailand will accept them. Often they try to escape but drown at sea. Hundreds have been arrested never to be seen again. They are denied visits in prison where they have been reported to be suffering from severe torture and often left naked, and even young boys and girls are often arrested. In addition women and girls are frequently taken away to be raped. I compiled a list of recent reports on events in October here: http://www.savetherohingya.blogspot.co.uk/2012_10_01_archive.html

Economic Developments

When looking at who is behind such crimes I believe it important to consider the history and the context. We can see that the Rohingya have suffered a series of clear serious assaults at the hands of the Burmese regime over a period of decades. A list of them is presented here: http://www.asiantribune.com/news/2012/11/03/letter-america-genocide-rohingyas-myanmar-%E2%80%93-part-1  In addition, there are major economic developments planned for this area. It came as no surprise for me to learn that Burma has a new oil and gas pipeline due to open in 2013 to take resources from the Bay of Bengal and also shipped from the Middle East up to China. The pipeline starts in the Arakan state, which is where the Rohingya clearance has been taking place, and passes over to the Kachin state where other human rights violations are also occurring http://www.hrw.org/news/2011/10/18/burma-army-committing-abuses-kachin-state . This document gives a lot of detail regarding the dealings of the oil companies involved : http://www.banktrack.org/manage/ajax/ems_dodgydeals/createPDF/shwe_gas_and_pipelines_projects and further information can be found here http://www.arakanrivers.net/?page_id=139 I also read that India (ONGC) and China (CNPC) were working together on the pipeline, alongside other ‘exploration and production’ operations taking place in the Sudan and Syria. http://blog.project2049.net/2012/07/sino-indian-energy-cooperation-in-burma.html But it seems not only India and China have a stake in this pipeline, other nations do also. Ban Ki-moon stated that it was a ‘win win’ situation for everyone. http://www.mizzima.com/news/world/4039-ban-ki-moon-called-burma-gas-pipeline-a-win-win.html What did he mean by that? This is certainly not a winning situation for the Rohingya, or do they not count?

In addition to the new pipeline, a deep sea port is being built at the port of Sittwe to handle the large oil carrying vessels which will be arriving, and massive development of the Kaladan River is taking place to enable boats to travel from India up to central Burma http://www.arakanrivers.net/?page_id=7474 The impact of the heavy militarisation of the area to assist with these developments can be read about here http://www.arakanrivers.net/?page_id=159 There is also a fancy new technology development zone to be built in Kyaw Pru on the Northern half of Ramree Island. http://youtu.be/gJntaVuritU

This area was recently razed to the ground during the violence and 10,000 people had to flee via boats, many of whom it seems must have drowned at sea because not all made it back to shore. The satellite images of the area were recorded by Human Rights Watch www.hrw.org/sites/default/files/related_material/2012_Burma_Satimage.pdf One of my friends who used to work in Burma sent me this observation

‘Notice in the first satellite image, the farthest out, there is an airport strip west  of the village area that has the burnt out neighbourhood when seen up close. This destroyed Muslim area is on the NE part of Ramree Island within the special economic zone to support industry, logistics and more. Ch Econ Tech Dev video – 00: 45  4:52, The whitened areas are in the zone.  Look at the video, there are 3 zones for business and then supportive. The Muslim area is in the supportive area.’

Channel Four also recently visited this same area and found that the Muslim population had been ‘wiped from the face of the earth’. http://youtu.be/rsP0X2bjzYQ

 

Who is Behind it All?

I have read many reports suggesting that the monk Wirathu has been a key player in the violence. http://www.aljazeera.com/news/asia-pacific/2012/09/201292175339684455.html Just before the violence started monk Wirathu was reportedly visited by Aung Thaung http://m.aljazeera.com/story/20121156292531721  who is the Union Solidarity and Development Party’s secretary as well as the Lower House’s Banks and Monetary Development Committee chair, and a man known to be close to former dictator Than Shwe  http://www2.irrawaddy.org/article.php?art_id=7327 I wonder how much of a stake Than Shwe has in current developments, and question if he isn’t still pulling strings behind the scenes? There have been previous calls for him to stand for his crimes before the ICC http://www.dvb.no/interview/aung-htoo-blc-%E2%80%98than-shwe-fears-the-icc%E2%80%99/12370 I read that Than Shwe’s leadership over the State Supreme Council ensures that he retains final say over the military and also has the ability to overrule both the cabinet and parliament in 2011, but don’t I know if anything has changed since then. http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Southeast_Asia/ME04Ae01.html

What is clear to me is that planned and well organised ethnic cleansing has been taking place, and with the Arakan state still under military control since the state of emergency took was declared in June, there is no way that this could have happened without military complicity. At best, this violence could have been easily prevented by the military had they so decided. I also understand that the Burmese only care about human rights when it is good for business. The release of Aung San Suu Kyi and her subsequent world tour was we all know to buy political favour, and didn’t it work well! Whilst she was dazzling people with her smile the operation to remove the Rohingya began. It was suggested to me that the Burmese idea of democracy is ASSK and the military Junta putting on suits. I believe that was a perfect analysis.

Torture in Prisons

The government may try to blame the violence entirely on the Rakhine Buddhists and hide their own involvement in the matter, but they cannot deny the treatment of the prisoners that they routinely torture in prison. Indeed aren’t there still UN and humanitarian workers still in prison, since they became witnesses to the regime crimes? The United Nations must now insist on full access to the prisons, that all political prisoners and aid workers are freed, and without such steps taken how can the West even begin to suggest that this is a reformed regime? The Rohingya are now at serious risk of elimination. Even Thein Sein stated clearly to the UN that he saw their removal as the only solution to the problem. http://mizzima.com/news/inside-burma/7514-un-rejects-burmas-offer-to-resettle-rohingya.html%20

Future in Your Hands

President Obama your visit to Burma later this month comes at a key moment in time. If business is to take precedence over human rights this will be the last green light that the regime were looking for and they will complete their plan to get rid of their problem without further delay. However if, and only if, the USA lay down the line, that human rights come first, and will not be compromised however great the business deal, then things will change. All rests now on your shoulders Mister President. The future of an entire race. Maybe this meeting will chart the route of future history. Maybe a stand for human rights now will result in the avoidance of the creation of a new and unstoppable Nazi regime. With half of the revenues of the oil pipeline heading the way of the military Junta, and the other half to China, surmounting to many billions of dollars, I dread to think of the future impact of such a regime.

The Rohingya urgently need protection, by an independent peacekeeping force. They need urgent access to aid and medical care. And they need the return of their citizenship which was stolen from them by the dictatorship in 1982 and never returned.

Ethnicity Removed

It has been reported in the media that a new census is taking place in a move towards granting citizenship to the Rohingya. However my Rohingya friend in Sittwe tells me that what is actually happening is that Rohingya are now being tortured into signing that they are Bengali not Rohingya, and some are even tortured in public as a deterrent for others. Those that refuse to sign are being arrested and driven away (clearly for more torture, probably never to be seen again). Just today he told me that people were even arrested and taken away by police from a refugee camp when they refused to sign.

Please do not be blinded by the Burmese government’s lies. Please understand the seriousness of doing businesses with the devil. Please make a stand for human rights. Business built on the back of ethnic cleansing can never be acceptable, however great the business. How sad it was to see you personally giving the ‘green light’ to the USA to invest in Burma immediately following the ethnic cleansing in July http://www.google.com/hostednews/afp/article/ALeqM5gKB86GUltfoXE53jVv5drW5a0t_Q?docId=CNG.826fe8bd777afed3ea0d4aff3a859816.1e1 and how shocking it was to then see that on the very same day in October that homes were being burnt and thousands of new people chased from their land in, fleeing for their lives, the US Deputy Secretary of the US Department of Treasury Neal S. Wolin was shaking hands and smiling with President Thein Sein over business deals http://www.mizzima.com/news/inside-burma/8304-high-us-treasury-official-meets-with-thein-sein.html

Genocide: Worse than War

I researched the topic of genocide and found Daniel Goldhagen’s truly excellent documentary, ‘Genocide: Worse than War’ incredibly informative http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w7cZuhqSzzc
I learnt through it that genocide is always caused by politics, and I understood that it can be stopped, although it happens over and over again. It takes place as a result of a series of decisions. Please watch this documentary. It is long but is may be the best documentary I have ever seen and if its advice is heeded thousands of future lives, or maybe millions, could be saved. Please let this be your defining moment as a truly great man that stopped a genocide, where many others have failed.

True Hero

For my Rohingya friend Aung in Sittwe, a true hero of this world, you are maybe his last hope. Please don’t let him down.

Thank-you for reading. May God grant you wisdom and bring you guidance.

Jamila Hanan
Human Rights Activist, UK
jamilahanan1@gmail.com

https://twitter.com/JamilaHanan
http://jamilahanan.blogspot.co.uk/
http://www.savetherohingya.blogspot.co.uk/
http://www.doctorsinchains.org/
http://www.eye4freedom.org/
http://www.angryarabiya.org/
http://www.medworm.com/

Copyright notice:  Please share and reprint this letter as you wish.

Please also read this letter to Obama from Aung the Rohingya refugee.

Thursday, 8 November 2012

Rohingya protest in Burma from Sittwe Camp

On Thursday 8th November the previously voiceless Rohingya did an amazing thing and protested from inside a refugee camp in Sittwe, Burma and tweeted their photos for the world to see via @aungaungsittwe. In doing so they joined other protests taking place around the world, led by the UK based charity Restless Beings.

These photos have been emailed from the camp and are available for the media to use freely as they wish. Please help to give these poor people the publicity they desperately need right now. If you need further information or higher resolution photos please email jamilahanan1@gmail.com

Tuesday, 30 October 2012

Rohingya: Final Wipe Out?

News is breaking of another clearance of the Rohingya Muslims from the state of Arakan in Burma. This is now looking far worse than the terrible violence in June that left 100000 homeless and many dead. They were given until 25th October to get out of their homes or face violence,  burnings of homes and killings are now in full swing. I have gathered all the news I could find on this here. Please let your governments and media outlets know this is a tragedy happening NOW. (this page will be updated as new links are found on this crisis)

IMPORTANT CLARIFICATION: It has been misreported in the media that this crisis is sectarian clashes. There are NO clashes, the violence is all one sided, this is ethnic cleansing backed by the police, with hatred whipped up against Muslims through state supported propaganda  and this has been clearly stated by excellent independent sources on the ground. Please try to convey this message.

URGENT UPDATE: THOUSANDS ARE STRANDED IN FIELDS AND VILLAGES SURROUNDED BY RAKHINE WAITING TO KILL THEM – THEY HAVE NOWHERE TO GO

NOTE – as of 1st October one of the important news sources which is listed below had its website suspended. Any links below for news.mmsy.info do not therefore currently work. I am trying to find out more about this and will leave the links below as the headlines themselves are important.

1st Nov

Burmese Muslims flock to displacement camps after fresh clashes with Buddhists – video

Best video coverage yet on the conflict. Watch to the end.

31st Oct

“We are not Rohingya/Bagali, We are Kaman” RFA interview with a Kyauk Ni Maw villager

http://news.mmsy.info/news/7414

(Refugee Updates) Arakan state government involuntarily relocated Muslim refugees

http://news.mmsy.info/news/7417

30th Oct

The persecution of the Rohingya: how a benighted minority in Burma suffer at the hands of despots

Children are dying now from starvation.
http://www.independent.co.uk/voices/comment/the-persecution-of-the-rohingya-how-a-benighted-minority-in-burma-suffer-at-the-hands-of-despots-8259990.html

The world must act to protect Burma’s Rohingya from starvation and slaughter

Thousands are being starved to death out of sight.
http://www.independent.co.uk/voices/comment/the-world-must-act-to-protect-burmas-rohingya-from-starvation-and-slaughter-8262073.html

 

Worst Feared for Ramree Islanders as UK Govt Offer Little Hope For Rohingya

Village of 7,000 surrounded by armed gang of 10,000. UK government don’t appear to be doing anything and clearly have full confidence in the Burmese government.
http://www.restlessbeings.org/projects/rohingya/worst-feared-for-ramree-islanders-as-uk-govt-offer-little-hope-for-rohingya
http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201213/cmhansrd/cm121030/debtext/121030-0001.htm#column_141 

Worrying Move to Transport All Refugess to Maungdaw

Rakhine youths have apparently been shipped in to Maungdaw and armed. Now the Rakhine have put out a message to transport all refugees to Maungdaw also. This is a very worrying development.
http://www.twitlonger.com/show/jqvej3

Rakhines Still Trying to Attack Kyaut Ni Maw (at 2:30PM)

Update from village still at risk of attack. Tension building.
http://news.mmsy.info/news/7340 

1000 Rakhines Surround Kyaut Ni Maw, Confronted by the Army

6000 villagers surrounded by killers waiting to die put out a desperate plea for help.
http://news.mmsy.info/news/7306

News of 400 slaughtered

Approximately 400 dead in  Yan Theyk Village, Mrauk U Township killed on 23rd October. As of 28th October many more villagers there will now die without rescue.
http://www.twitlonger.com/show/jqteqi

Lieutenant General Hla Min said, “Rakhine People have more than enough Nationalistic sprit.”

A courageous lieutenant general realizes what is happening to  the Rohingya and speaks out, but will anyone listen?
http://news.mmsy.info/news/7323

Kyauktayan village was under the threat even after the inspection of Lt. General Hla Min.

List of instigators of violence given here. Army general visits village to critisize instigators of violence, then armed gangs gather to attack village next door when general leaves. Army trying to protect village. Problem of access to emergency healthcare.
http://news.mmsy.info/news/7299

Burma Village ‘Under Attack by Petrol Bombs,’ Say Unconfirmed Reports

Reports of petrol attacks, torching of another village.Little food and drink in camps. Scores injured without medical assistance.
http://phuketwan.com/tourism/burma-village-under-attack-petrol-bombs-unconfirmed-reports-16949/

Anti-Muslim Monk Wirathu’s Talk on Arakan Conflict

Wira Thu is one of the monks said to be propagating hatred towards Muslims, and is also said to be working for the government.
http://news.mmsy.info/news/7346

Burma’s displaced Rohingyas in squalid and overcrowded camps

A really dire situation, just got worse.
http://www.radioaustralia.net.au/international/radio/program/asia-pacific/burmas-displaced-rohingyas-in-squalid-and-overcrowded-camps/1038618

‘Myanmar authorities not doing enough to protect Rohingyas’

With many boats stranded at sea HRW suggests that India should do the right thing in providing shelter and pushing other governments to also.
http://zeenews.india.com/news/world/myanmar-authorities-not-doing-enough-to-protect-rohingyas_808392.html

29th Oct

Anti-Rohingya and Muslim Violence Spreads to Karen State

In Pauk Taw 7,000 given until morning to leave field or be killed. Another 3,00 stuck in another field. 15,000 seeking shelter. 2 mosques bombed in Karen state. Refugees not getting aid. Global day of action on 8th November.
http://www.restlessbeings.org/projects/rohingya/anti-rohingya-and-muslim-violence-spreads-to-karen-state

Mass killing and torching houses continued in Arakan State

Pauktaw Townshipn which contains 1,200 homes is ablaze. 53 bloats landed at Ohntaw (Bariza Para). 12 boats with 2,000 refugees landed at Tae Chaung of Akya where they have no aid and are surrounded by boarder police who are abusing them and starving them to death. Rakhine youths are being brought in to Maungdaw Township and armed to kill Muslims.
http://www.kaladanpress.org/v3/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=3935:mass-killing-and-torching-houses-continued-in-arakan-state&catid=155:october-2012&Itemid=2

Heart-broken news received from the ground of Arakan State

21 boats were at sea 5 days without food or drink. Mothers gave birth on boats and died with their babies. Bodies thrown into sea by military. 14 boats allowed to land, 7 taken away by Navy location unknown. 100 died trying to defend mosque in Pike Seik Quarter in Kyawk Phyu.
http://www.rohingyablogger.com/2012/10/heart-broken-news-received-from-ground.html

Rohingya Boatpeople ‘Helped On’ at Sea off Thailand: More Likely to Flee

Boat carrying 100 Rohingya refugees makes it to Thailand waters but is not allowed to land.
http://phuketwan.com/tourism/rohingya-boatpeople-helped-sea-thailand-likely-flee-16947/

Refugees accuse Burmese government of ignoring ethnic cleansing: ‘If we stayed, we would have been killed’

A bell was rang before petrol bombs were thrown on their homes. Firfighters doused homes with petrol.
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/asia/refugees-accuse-burmese-government-of-ignoring-ethnic-cleansing-if-we-stayed-we-would-have-been-killed-8229919.html

Turkey sends humanitarian aid to Arakan State

Although Turkey is sending aid it is very hard to deliver this to the Rohingya people. Expect much of this aid to feed the mouths of the killers, that is what has happened with much aid previously delivered.
http://www.mizzima.com/news/inside-burma/8309-turkey-sends-humanitarian-aid-to-arakan-state.html

16-year-old Muslim boy killed in Kyauktaw

Case report of one boy who was abducted and killed. (there are many more being killed like this)
http://news.mmsy.info/news/7287

Muslims in Yangon’s Thin Gan Gyune Threatened With Arson Attacks

Village at Yangon Thin Gan Gyune has been issued an arson attack warning, message delivered to a school.
http://news.mmsy.info/news/7248

 

28th Oct

Burmese Army Allow Further 2,300 Rohingya to Become Displaced

60 kids left behind fate unknown. Four boats destroyed. Border police torching houses. Rakhine attacking with guns.
In the boats there are dead, sick and women – some with newborn babies. What an inhumane affair. This is an attempt to kill human beings in cold blood. This is an attempt to exterminate Rohingyas from Arakan.’

Foreign Secretary comments on continued violence in Rakhine state, Burma‏

‘We deplore the latest spate of attacks which has caused many casualties, left tens of thousands of people displaced’.
http://www.fco.gov.uk/en/news/latest-news/?view=News&id=827528982

 

27th Oct

HRW: Burma: New Violence in Arakan State

‘Human Rights Watch fears the death toll is far higher based on allegations from witnesses fleeing scenes of carnage and the government’s well-documented history of underestimating figures.’
http://www.hrw.org/news/2012/10/26/burma-new-violence-arakan-state
Damage Assessment Summary for Kyauk Pyu, based on satellite imagery recorded on morning of 25 October 2012 (note this is just one area that has been burnt, there are others)
http://www.hrw.org/news/2012/10/26/damage-assessment-summary-kyauk-pyu-satellite-imagery

Burma: ‘Entire Neighbourhood Has Simply Disappeared’

Unusually accurate reporting from the BBC. Listen carefully.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-20108090

ROHINGYA CLEANSING CONTINUED IN ARAKAN UNDER STATE PROGRAMME, U.N. PEACEKEEPING FORCE MOST URGENT

Desperate plea from Rohingya organisations around the world. Confirmation of report that firefighters doused flames with petrol, and police and army backing of crimes.
http://www.kaladanpress.org/v3/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=3932:rohingya-cleansing-continued-in-arakan-under-state-programme-un-peacekeeping-force-most-urgent-&catid=23:rohingya&Itemid=32

Appeal by a US Physician to the State Department

‘I propose the US take the lead in negotiating a facilitated exodus for the Rohingya who chose to leave. The OIC has proposed ~200 million dollars in relief…Please don’t let this be another Bosnia, Nazi Germany and Rwanda where the international community steps in only in time to dig up or bury the dead.’
http://news.mmsy.info/news/6997

Refugees Run Out of Food and Fuel in Sin Tat Maw

Brave villagers seek to give refuge to 3,500 arriving in boats but they risk attack on their own village to do so and do not have enough food to feed everyone. These refugees are waiting to die.
http://news.mmsy.info/news/7076

Urgent collective international action needed to protect the Rohingya

‘Scores of terrorized villagers fleeing in boats have reportedly been drowned; and many dead bodes are now floating in the sea and rivers. The resultant effects of the mass atrocities, in terms of human and material loss, are too great. In particular, the port city of Kyaukpyu has now been ethnically cleansed of the people of Islamic faith.’
http://www.kaladanpress.org/v3/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=3933:urgent-collective-international-action-needed-to-protect-the-rohingya&catid=23:rohingya&Itemid=32

No permission to land Rohingya load boats in Maungdaw south

‘The Nasaka (border police) personnel are not giving permission local people to give any help to boats; foods, water, fuel and medicines. In the boats, there are female and children, accompany with elderly person.’

News Report by Myanmar’s Islamic Religious Affairs Council on Arakan Terror

Translated status report of crimes from previous day.

26th Oct

Update from excellent independent sources on ground:
“26th October am: multiple boats, which included some dead woman and children, with ~8000 Muslim survivors from KyaukPyu assault came ashore in Maungdaw South. International relief teams responded with many trucks full of relief supplies and provisions but Military Border Forces prohibited any of this relief from reaching these survivors. Border forces allowed only 4 boats ashore while photos were taken of Border Force showing assistance. The remaining boats, which included dead women and babies, were rerouted over 40 miles up the Naaf River to Taungbro, which is ~100 yards from Bangladesh where there is no international relief.”
http://www.twitlonger.com/show/jplf53

Direct update from excellent source on ground in Arakan state:

“Though Rakhine Buddhist civilians and monks have threatened anyone giving aid to Rohingya, international relief and local Muslims has responded to large number of boats with as many as 10,000 Muslims escaping from at least Kyauk Pyu…landing in Sittwe and Maungdaw South with dead babies, children and women included. Many boats havebeen turned away by Rakhine Buddhists in Sittwe.”
http://www.twitlonger.com/show/jpgulf

Violence Spreads To Kaman Ethnicity Whilst 10,000 Rohingya Are Rendered Displaced

Newly born baby + mother shot. 10000 adrift at see. Mass grave 200 bodies discovered.
http://www.restlessbeings.org/projects/rohingya/violence-spreads-to-kaman-ethnicity-whilst-10000-rohingya-are-rendered-displaced

Hundreds Killed, Thousands Floating on the Sea Facing Starvation

State sponsored ethnic cleansing. Confirmed reports of hundreds killed. Mass grave with 200 buried.
http://www.rohingyablogger.com/2012/10/hundreds-killed-thousands-of-rohingya.html

Rohingya campaigners accuse Burma of failing to stop deaths

Burmese government complicit in a “final clearance of the Rohingya people”. 

The Navy Refuses Ethnic Kaman Refugees in Sittwe

5000 to 6000 refugees with nowhere to go,, including woman in labour, starving to death.
http://news.mmsy.info/news/6990

 

Yaan-Byay Township’s Kaman Muslims’ Block are being set fire now

Not just Rohingya Muslims but Kamam Muslims too are now being removed.

 

Official Arakan Death Toll Rises to 112

When even the official government spin doctors are announcing a death toll of 112 in 5 days you know something very serious is happening. Of cause for alarm is a state government announcement that the authorities would not allow more evacuees to enter the city [of Sittwe which is where all the boats of refugess were heading, the only place they had to go].
http://www.irrawaddy.org/archives/17401

US, UN React to Arakan Violence

The USA have pledgede $2.73 million for displaced people in the Arakan State. I guess that would build a nice house or two in the USA.
http://www.irrawaddy.org/archives/17365

High US Treasury official meets with Thein Sein

Whilst the Rohingya were being massacred on Thursday, US officials were meeting with Thein Sein to discuss trade and the removal of all economic sanctions.
http://www.mizzima.com/news/inside-burma/8304-high-us-treasury-official-meets-with-thein-sein.html

Breaking News of Pauk Taw Township, Arakan

4 villages burnt at 12.30am. Thousands homeless fled to sea. Boats told not to land until they reach town where Rakhine are waiting to kill them. People in boats adrift at sea for days without food or drink.
http://www.rohingyablogger.com/2012/10/breaking-news-of-arakan-myanmar-pauk.html

25th Oct

UN Statement

‘large scale loss of human lives’
http://www.un.org/sg/statements/index.asp?nid=6391 

 

360 dead and destroy 3500 homes in renewed clashes in Arakan State

More than 200 bodies in mass grave at Maruk-U
http://www.kaladanpress.org/v3/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=3931:360-dead-and-destroy-3500-homes-in-renewed-clashes-in-arakan-state&catid=155:october-2012&Itemid=2

Please see @Aungaungsittwe and https://plus.google.com/photos/101220847155228357407/albums/5803174743090174673?banner=pwa for more recent images from Burma

Latest Images from Burma on the Rohingya Crisis

http://www.restlessbeings.org/projects/rohingya/latest-images-from-burma-on-the-rohingya-crisis

 

International Response May Be Too Late for Rohingya

Reports from 5 townships and sad news that 3 of RestlessBeings sources have also been killed in Burma.

Burma Massacre Fears: Reports of Phase II Expulsion of Unwanted Rohingya

Two Rohingya callers report. 90 herded into boat then men shot women raped. 1000 fled into mountains around Sittwe.
http://phuketwan.com/tourism/burma-massacre-fears-reports-phase-expulsion-unwanted-rohingya-16920/

 

Kyaukpyu’s Muslim Quarter Razed to the Ground

Noone left in Muslim quarter. All heading to Sittwe in boats, or killed, with weapons such as machetes. Eleven admitted to hospital.
http://www.irrawaddy.org/archives/17309

 

Students call for removal of Rohingya villages

More than 800 students joined a rally to call for an end to “studying with terrorist Bengalis” and for the removal of Muslim villages on the road to the university.
http://www.mizzima.com/news/inside-burma/8287-students-call-for-removal-of-rohingya-villages.html

Muslims in Myae Pon are starving, Chief Police Officer Is Leading the Violence

Refugees fear death by starvation.Reports that Police Chief Thar San is leading the killing.
http://news.mmsy.info/news/6896

 

Police accused of provocation in Burma violence

A Burmese Muslim politician says local police in Burma’s Rakhine state are instigating violence
http://www.radioaustralia.net.au/international/2012-10-25/police-accused-of-provocation-in-burma-violence/1036154

Violence in Arakan Spread to Kyaut Taw Today

At 6:30 AM, Rakhines have started burning down houses at Lat Saung Kaut village. Those fleeing the area were shot by the Rakhine Army. local witness reports 7 deaths.
http://news.mmsy.info/news/6912

 

Three Ferries Carrying Muslim Refugees Were Attacked in Arakan: Many Died

3 ferries reported as attacked the previous day, and victims including women chopped up. One 10 year old boy escaped.
http://news.mmsy.info/news/6905

 

Setting fire and killing Rohingyas resumes in Kyauk Taw

Burning of 20 houses began at 5.30am whilst Muslims praying in the mosque. Two shot dead, one seriously injured.
http://www.rohingyablogger.com/2012/10/setting-fire-and-killing-rohingyas.html

Radio Free Asia’s Interview With A Muslim Fleeing To The Sea

Interview with guy in his boat who reported 7000 were at sea trying to flee the violence, chased out of their homes by Rakhines with swords. All homes burnt. He saw 3 youths shot dead.
http://news.mmsy.info/news/6959

 

24th Oct

Ultimatum issued to get out of houses by 25th October 

Reports of firefighters arriving with tank full of petrol instead of water to put on blazing homes.

 

Security in Pak Taw Township Now Uncertain

Village told by secuirty forces they could not be protected. Seven men went to hire ferries to help villagers escape but the Rakhines arrested them. ‘Since they are in Rakhines’ hands, they won’t come alive. Their bodies won’t even come back.’
http://news.mmsy.info/news/6908

 

News of Rohingya in Pauktaw, Mre Bon and Kaukphyu Tsp

Pauktaw: Men slaughtered in front of women and children in river, young boy espaped. Kyauk Phyu: 600 killed trying to escape by boat.  Mre Bon: 600 homes burnt, deaths unknown.

 

Rohingyas Float Dead in River As Fish 

3000 peoples’ homes burnt to ground. 100 corpses floating after boat overturned just one 13 year old escaped. 1300 stuck on river bank got just a few hours to escape or be killed.
More than 15,000 floating in boats fate unknown. Rakhines planning to kill the people in the boats.

 

Not Expecting to See Sunlight – 2000 Rohingya Await Death

In Minbya, the only remaining Rohingya village, Lombaichar, has 850 Rohingya homes which are now completely encircled by a 7,000 strong Rakhine force. 2000 remaining Rohingya do not expect to see sunlight.
http://www.restlessbeings.org/projects/rohingya/not-expecting-to-see-sunlight-2000-rohingya-await-death
Above article ‘expressed fear that Kyauk Pru island town has been comletely over-run – leaving 10,000 displaced after all houses were razed and burnt to ashes’. That’s got to be good news for this project about to begin:

 

300 Trapped Awaiting Death

Other than death, other options seem completely unlikely.
http://www.restlessbeings.org/projects/rohingya/300-rohingya-trapped-awaiting-death
 

 Hundreds Killed and Thousands of Homes Destroyed in Arakan State

Eyewitness account of approximately 100 + 350 women and children + 200 (total 650) slaughtered, 600 + 100 + 600 homes burnt (total 1300 homes), plus people jumping in river with nowhere to go.

Burma’s Rohingya face ‘new wave of violence’

‘suggests that a concerted campaign has begun to drive Rohingya out of this district’

Latest News on Rakhine Terror in Arakan State (Oct 24 @ 11: 30AM)

Eyewitness reports, people chopped up with swords, women and children put on boats but Navy threaten to shoot them. Fire on four sides, people with nowhere to go.

Rakhine Student Union in Sittwe to Remove Muslims from Villages and Schools

Rally gathering now in Sittwe.
http://news.mmsy.info/news/6814

Burma clashes spread to new districts

Even the government says 1,000 homes have been burnt (so it must be bad!)
http://www.rmcg.org.uk/news-p34

Anti-Muslim Hate Letters Spreading in Yangon Outskirts

Hate letters are now being distributed by the Patriotic Youth Network with propaganda to turn people against the Rohingya Muslims
http://news.mmsy.info/news/6832

 

23rd Oct

More than 800 houses burn out in Minbya and Maruk-U

Rohingya Unrest Continues – 100 killed

100 feared dead, 26 raped, 200,000 stranded in homes with nowhere to go.

Rakhine Terroristsand RNDP Party are Meeting in Mrauk Oo and Minbya Tsps for Further Killing of Rohingya

Police tell Rohingya to leave villages or be killed

16 Oct Demonstration Against Muslim Office: Monks Whipped Up in the Hatred (preparation for massacre?)

Leaked video footage from June 2012

http://www.rohingyablogger.com/2012/10/a-documentary-video-on-genocides.html

Remember Rohingya, a Restless Beings Report

http://www.restlessbeings.org/projects/rohingya/remember-rohingya-a-restless-beings-report

Petition

http://www.change.org/petitions/us-state-department-must-stop-rohingya-ethnic-cleansing-in-burma-initiate-sending-un-peace-keeping-force?utm_campaign=action_box&utm_medium=twitter&utm_source=share_petition#

Monday, 23 July 2012

#SaveTheRohingya Action 3

#SaveTheRohingya Action 3.0

Write to Catherine Ashton vice-president and high representative of the European Union for foreign affairs and security policy.

email: COMM-SPP-HRVP-ASHTON@ec.europa.eu
tweet: @eu_eeas 
interact on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/EuropeanExternalActionService (not possible to send message but you can comment to their posts)

Tell her it is not acceptable that the EU is strengthening ties and dropping sanctions with a country whose government is ethnically cleansing part of its population.

The Rohingya Muslims have been living in Bangladesh for hundreds of years. Their citizenship was removed in 1982. They are denied many human rights including the right to get married. Thousands of their homes have recently been destroyed by fire. Hundreds have been killed by police instigated violence and thousands are now homeless, in hiding, in desperate need of food and medical assistance.

Please draw attention to the following:

Genocide Alert Level 7 (extermination) issued by Genocide Watch
Human Rights Watch
Amnesty International
World Food Program
Channel Four

The Burmese Prime Minister Thein Sein made his policy on ethnic cleansing clear, when he told the UN:

‘We will take responsibility for our ethnic people, but it is impossible to accept the illegally entered Rohingyas, who are not our ethnicity,’

‘We will send them away if any third country would accept them,” Thein Sein said. “This is what we are thinking is the solution to the issue.’ 

Background Info on EU Position

An article published by the Anadolu Agency on 22nd July states that the EU ‘is making diplomatic initiatives so the massacre of Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar ends’, but we could find no such evidence of this elsewhere or on the EU website.

These are all the recent statements from Catherine Ashton’s office regarding Myanmar:

17th April 2012 – Catherine Ashton EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and Vice President of the European Commission Speech on Myanmar European Parliament Strasbourg

‘We will encourage European companies to look for opportunities in Burma.’

27th April 2012 – Catherine Ashton visits Burma/Myanmar to open a new chapter in the relationship

‘The European Union welcomes the remarkable changes in Burma/Myanmar and has decided to open a new chapter in our relations. We have suspended the sanctions with the exception of the arms embargo.’

28th April 2012 – HR/VP Catherine Ashton opens the EU office in Burma/Myanmar

‘I hope you will see our office as a symbol of the European Union, its 27 Member States, its institutions that demonstrate the commitment of the EU to this country and to the political process that is now underway.’

14th May 2012 – Meeting between President Barroso and U Shwe Mann, Speaker of Lower House of the Parliament of Myanmar

‘in line with the recent decisions to suspend the restrictive measures, the new package of €150 million in development assistance for 2012/2013 and the opening of a diplomatic presence in Myanmar.’


13th June – Statement by the spokesperson of High Representative Catherine Ashton on the crisis in Northern Rakhine State in Myanmar

We welcome the priority which the Myanmar Government is giving to dealing with all ethnic conflicts. We very much welcome the measured response reflected in the President’s statement.’

15th June – Joint statement by EU High Representative Catherine Ashton and EU Trade Commissioner Karel De Gucht on Burma-Myanmar

‘We welcome the decision by the International Labour Organisation (ILO) to suspend their resolution against Myanmar/Burma condemning labour practices in the country’





Friday, 20 July 2012

#SaveTheRohingya Action 2

Whilst the world media obsessed over the distraction of Aung San Suu Kyi, quietly ignored back in Burma 90,000 people were displaced from their homes, which were burnt to the ground, in a mass act of genocide (disguised as sectarian strife) against the Rohingyan Muslim people.

http://www.genocidewatch.org/myanmar.html
http://www.hrw.org/news/2012/07/05/burma-mass-arrests-raids-rohingya-muslims

The whole world it seems can’t wait to get into Burma, to do business, and a major new gas pipeline is being built from the Bay of Bengal across to China due to be finished by 2013, which may or may not be adding to the excitement.

Many of the Rohingya tried to escaped with their lives by taking to sea, only to get turned back at the Bangladesh border. Some boats disappeared. Others were reported to have been shot from  helicopters and destroyed.

Now we have a source on the ground who told us everyone had run out of food. Good news is that as of today, 20th July, we have learnt that some food is now getting through to the Rohingya, distributed by the WFP, but many thousands are still hungry and in desperate need. In addition our source says more medical assistance is urgently required as there are many injuries and sick people. We have been told that there is some medical help but more is required since people are dying every day from injuries and disease.

These people desperately need protection, food, medical care and homes rebuilding, as quickly as possible. This requires money. We would like to be able to help raise funds for the Rohingya so we have been writing to DEC to ask them to launch an emergency appeal. The problem is that DEC will not launch an appeal until the main stream media has been reporting the crisis for a number of days.

On Monday 23rd July Restless Beings are holding a press conference on behalf of the Rohingya people to raise awareness of the current crisis. It is important that all the UK press attend. Please write and tweet to them all, and ask them to send someone to the press conference to give this mass act of genocide the urgent coverage it should be getting. We have listed some news sources below for you to contact, but you may wish to contact more.

Please also write and tweet to the UK government who should also be sending someone to the press conference to find out more and voicing this issue as a matter of urgent and grave concern. We have listed some details below but if you live in the UK please also contact your own MP.

Press Conference 23rd July London: http://www.restlessbeings.org/events/rohingya-the-human-story

#SaveTheRohingya Action 2.1

Update: The BBC finally gave a bit of online coverage to the crisis on 20th July here but it was sadly lacking in detail of easily verifiable facts (such as 90000 displaced and hungry, and thousands of homes burnt to the ground).

Write to the BBC ask for urgent detailed television coverage on the Rohingya genocide and ask them to attend the Restless Beings press conference in London 23rd July.

Contact BBC News channel here: http://news.bbc.co.uk/newswatch/ukfs/hi/newsid_3950000/newsid_3959100/3959111.stm
Find more departments to contact here:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/newswatch/ukfs/hi/newsid_3950000/newsid_3959100/3959111.stm
General:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/newswatch/ukfs/hi/newsid_4030000/newsid_4032600/4032695.stm
Radio:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/newswatch/ukfs/hi/newsid_3960000/newsid_3964500/3964513.stm
Twitter:
@BBCNEWS

#SaveTheRohingya Action 2.2

Write to the Sky News ask for urgent coverage on the Rohingya genocide and ask them to attend the Restless Beings  press conference in London 23rd July.

Email: news@sky.com
Twitter: @SkyNews
More: http://news.sky.com/info/contact-ushttp://news.sky.com/info/contact-us

#SaveTheRohingya Action 2.3

Write to the the Daily Mail ask for urgent coverage on the Rohingya genocide and ask them to attend the Restless Beings  press conference in London 23rd July.

Email: news@dailymail.co.uk

Twitter: @MailOnline @DMAILnews

#SaveTheRohingya Action 2.4

Write to the Independent and ask for urgent coverage on the Rohingya genocide and ask them to attend the Restless Beings press conference in London 23rd July.

Email: newseditor@independent.co.uk
Twitter: @Independent @IndyWorld
Independent Journalists on Twitter
More: http://www.independent.co.uk/incoming/contact-us-759589.html


#SaveTheRohingya Action 2.5

Write to the the UK government ask them to voice urgent concerns about the genocide of the Rohingya in Burma and ask them to attend the Restless Beings  press conference in London 23rd July to find out more about the current situation on the ground.

Prime Minister’s Office 10 Downing Street
Twitter: @Number10gov @WilliamJHague

Email Secretary of State Mr William Hague: haguew@parliament.uk
Email Foreign Affairs Committee: foraffcom@parliament.uk

If in the UK, contact your MP.

When you have completed these tasks please tweet to the #SaveTheRohingya tag to tell everyone and also paste to Facebook to ask others to do the same. Please also tweet @SaveTheRohingya with your progress.

If we all act together we may be able to get the Rohingya the help they desperately need!

Please help to #SaveTheRohingya

Please check back tomorrow for day 3 of actions.
If you missed action 1.5 it is here – please do that too!
Wondering what this is all about? You can read about the launch of the campaign and what we are doing here.