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Buddhist violence continues to plague Myanmar's Muslim communities.
(KUALA LUMPUR) - Myanmar Ethnic Rohingyas Human Rights Organization Malaysia (MERHROM) received numerous urgent calls from Rohingyas in the Arakan State of Myanmar. On 2nd April 2013 at 2.45 a.m. in Maung Nifara Village of Maungdaw Township, Rohingyas villagers saw 35 Rakhines Buddhists gathered near the mosques in the village.
The Rakhines brought petrol, matches and lethal weapons with them. The Rohingyas immediately reported to the security forces, namely Nasaka and Police. The security forces brought the 35 Rakhines to another place and questioned them. The Nasaka and the police then told the Rohingyas to return home without explaining the intention of the Rakhines gathered near the mosque. The Rohingyas believe that they were planning to burn the mosque. However there is no action taken against the Rakhine group who clearly has a plan to burn down the mosque.
On 3rd April 2013, at about 3:00 a.m. in Butthidaung, a group of Rakhines tried to enter the main mosque. They had petrol, matches, a long knife and other weapons with them. Due to the noise some Rohingyas residents who stay near the mosque realized that a group of people were trying to enter the mosque. They immediately called the police. The police questioned them as to what are they doing early morning in that area. The Rakhines told the police that they were looking for frogs. According to the Rohingya residents who stays in the area there are no frogs in that area. The Rakhines actually had an intention to burn the main Mosque in the city. The Rohingyas told the police that the Rakhines tried to burn the Mosque but the police got angry. Police ordered the Rohingyas and Rakhines to return home. The police reportedly warned the Rohingyas not to prolong the story otherwise the police will put them into the jail.
On 3rd April 2013, at about 6:30 a.m., the police and Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB) arrested two Rakhine Buddhists with two pistols at Ramu fish market under the Cox’s Bazar district. They were arrested on suspicion as they were wandering from place to place and the police and BGB found two foreign made pistols with 22 bullets from them.
The two Rakhines claimed they were newcomers from Arakan, but police found their wristwatches were set to Bangladesh Standard Time (BST). One of them said he was a carrier and will get taka 200,000, if he reached Arakan with guns. He is not the owner of the guns, according to Altaf, an aide of BGB.
After the arrest, they were brought to Ramu Police station for further interrogations. Some shopkeepers of Ramu market believe that they are the members of Arakan Liberation Party (ALP) who are appointed to do a special job in Bangladesh. Some local villagers said, “They came here to kill people in Bangladesh and we heard that recently a group of Rakhine people had been sent to Bangladesh from Arakan.”
Today, 4th April 2013, two Rakhines from Bangladesh who entered Maungdaw Township were arrested by Nasaka as they were holding two AK-47 guns. The Rohingyas do not know what happened to them and if there is any action taken on them for holding guns. The Rohingyas villagers feel really unsafe as there are already several violent incidents in recent months where the security forces found the Rakhines groups with petrol, matches and arms but we do not know what actions were taken in those cases.
On the same day, 14 Rohingyas Richmen in Tung Bazar Village, Buthidaung Township were arrested by Nasaka and all of them taken to Nasaka camp. The Nasaka forced them to hold different arms, guns and lethal weapons. Nasaka then took pictures of the Rohingyas holding arms and guns. Then they were beaten and tortured by Nasaka. The Nasaka forced the 14 Rohingyas to admit that they were from Rohingyas Solidarity Organization (RSO) and the weapons belong to them. They were still detained by Nasaka. We do not know their fate as the allegations against them are very heavy.
MERHROM strongly emphasized that the Rohingyas Solidarity Organization (RSO) has stopped a very long time ago. Since the violence started in June 2012, the Rohingyas in Arakan State are highly monitored and controlled by the Security forces. Beyond that, a curfew was imposed on the Rohingyas until now. In this very tight and highly controlled situation, how could the Rohingyas be involved in RSO?
The humanitarian crisis in Arakan State is not over yet. Currently there are more than 125,000 Rohingyas living in the temporary camps with a severe lack of food, water, medical, clothes and other basic needs. Day by day the Rohingya children, women, elderly and men die in the camps due to starvation, malnutrition and diseases. Many more will die as the rainy season already started in Arakan State.
The situation in the camp is worsening as the Myanmar government is systematically restricting humanitarian aid and imposing discriminatory policies on Rohingya Muslims in Arakan State as revealed by the Human Rights Watch.
While the humanitarian crisis for the Rohingyas continues in Arakan State, we were shocked to hear the riot started in Meiktila which claimed more lives of minority Muslim and destroyed more houses, mosques and Muslim properties. In the last few days, riots have spread quickly to the other towns and more houses, mosques and properties were destroyed.
Recently the International Community was shocked to hear 13 teenage boys at a Muslim school in Yangon were killed in a blaze. The Myanmar government put the blame on electrical fault while the teacher and the student said they could smell fuel during the blaze. Further to this they were slipping on an oily liquid on the ground floor while escaping.
MERHROM strongly emphasized that all of these incidents proves the continuous attacks against Muslims across Myanmar by the Myanmar government. They are attacking top Muslim businesses, Mosques, Muslim houses and properties and recently young generations. There is Genocide towards Muslim across Myanmar. We do not know what to expect next by the Myanmar government. The Myanmar government is using all its Security forces together with the Buddhist population to clean Muslim from Myanmar.
MERHROM urgently calls for the United Nations Security Council to send their Peace Keeping Mission to Arakan State, Meiktila and other affected area Urgently to stop the Genocide towards Minority Muslim in Myanmar.
MERHROM urgently calls for World Leaders, OIC, ASEAN and to the International Communities to stop the economic and political relationship with Myanmar until they resolve the conflict and protect Muslims in Myanmar with equal rights.
MERHROM urgently urge the World Leaders and International Communities to prosecute the President Thien Sein and former General Thein Shwe for Genocide and Crimes Against Humanity. They must be brought to the International Criminal Court (ICC) for killing, raping, torturing, detaining and abusing Minority Muslims and other ethnics.
We thank you for your Urgent Intervention to resolve the conflict and Save the minority Muslims from the state sponsored ethnic cleansing and GENOCIDE.
Mr. Zafar Ahmad Bin Abdul Ghani
Myanmar Ethnic Rohingya Human Rights Organization Malaysia (MERHROM)
Email : firstname.lastname@example.org
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