a little over A million Rohingya are currently living in State of Arakan, in north-west of Burma. These sunni muslims live in a country where more than 90 % of 52 million people are buddhist.
Read also : In north of Burma, a long history of tension and violence
As pointed out in The diplomatic World, some historians consider that Rohingya are descendants of traders and soldiers, arabs, mongols, turks, and bengalis converted to islam in Fifteenth century.
In country, origin of name "Rohingya" is disputed. Historians burmese argue that no one had heard of before 1950's. These strengn government's position, which considers that Rohingya have arrived at time of british colonization, to end of Nineteenth century, and that y are thus emigrants in illegal Bangladesh's neighbor.Stateless since 1982, victims of numerous restrictions
A 1982 law introduced by military dictatorship has rendered Rohingya stateless. They have not been recognized as part of one hundred and thirty-five ethnic groups listed in Burma. Even today, burmese government does not recognize that " national races ", those present in country before arrival of british settlers, in 1823.
According to a report from european Commission, updated in may, "re are tensions of long-standing" between Rohingya and " buddhist community in Rakhine ", and " segregation of community [re is] institutionalized ". The document highlights many of restrictions to which muslim minorities should abide :" They cannot travel without permission, or working outside of ir villages, or even marry without permission of authorities, and do not have access to sufficient food, health care and education. "
The european paper adds that" in consequence of limit on number of children allowed to couples rohingya, thousands of children are without a birth certificate because y have not been declared ".
The deprivation of rights does not stop re. The Rohingya have been officially banned from voting in last general election of November 2015 and " had no right to political representation ".Why this crisis is it at heart of news ?
A new outbreak of violence in Arakan State, often plagued by unrest, began after attack of a score of border posts, on 25th of August by rebels of Army of salvation of Rohingya of Arakan (ARSA), making twelve deaths in ranks of police. This rebel group has emerged recently, in face of absence of progress on issue of muslim minority. These attacks have triggered a suppression of army, and more than four hundred dead, mostly Rohingya, according to army. The united nations recognizes more than a thousand deaths.
" This time, Rohingya burmese are target of a campaign of deportation, systematic, whose goal seems to be that it is total and final. An end of ir world, " said Rémy Ourdan, special envoy of World to border banglado-burmese. "Those who remain behind fugitives are executed, and villages are being systematically burned ", he said again.
Read our story : "Leave or you're all going to die" : on roads of deportation of Rohingya burmese
The high commissioner of UN for human rights, Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein, said that " situation sembl[has] to be a classic example of ethnic cleansing" :" We have received multiple reports and satellite images showing security forces and local militias burning villages, rohingya, and consistent information reports of extrajudicial executions, including shooting of fleeing civilians. "
The rebels rohingya were declared, on Sunday 10th of September, a ceasefire, a unilateral one-month, but burmese government has responded that he was not negotiating with " terrorists ".What are previous episodes of violence ?
In 2012, inter-communal violence had already erupted in Arakan State, causing over two hundred deaths, mainly among muslims. Thousands of m had to leave ir home. Over one hundred and forty thousand people had fled this year, and one hundred and twenty thousand are still displaced four years after events, living in camps of misery.
In a report from 2013, NGO Human Rights Watch accused already on burmese authorities, members of ethnic arakanese and buddhist monks to have committed crimes against humanity by conducting " coordinated attacks against neighbourhoods and muslim villages in October 2012 to terrorise population and move of force." The organization said that burmese authorities had participated in destruction of mosques, launched a wave of arrests, accompanied by violence and blocked access of humanitarian agencies to internally displaced persons.
Between 2014 and 2015, " some four-twenty-fourteen-thousand people (for many of Rohingya) have fled in irregularity, in boats precarious, finishing often in hands of human traffickers and modern-day slavery ", is also reminiscent of european Commission.
In October 2016, a series of attacks against border posts in vicinity of Bangladesh did nine deaths among police officers. The attacks, claimed by ARSA, had sparked a major operation of army. The humanitarian activities were suspended and more than seventy-four thousand Rohingya had fled ir village to Bangladesh, accusing security forces of numerous abuses. This is same scenario that repeats itself since end of month of August, so increases tenfold.Where fleeing Rohingya ?
The Rohingya fled en masse several times in Bangladesh, Malaysia or Indonesia, to escape repression of burmese junta n in power — notably in 1978 and 1991-1992. Hundreds of thousands of Rohingya still live today in refugee camps in Bangladesh in abject poverty. In this country, y are considered to be illegal immigrants.
today, Rohingya are still leaking heavily country by sea to reach Malaysia, forming largest exodus in region since end of Vietnam war.
In may, european Commission estimated that three hundred thousand to five hundred thousand Rohingya living in makeshift camps in Bangladesh, in addition to thirty-three thousand, drawn up in two official camps managed by UN, at Nayapara and Kutupalong. Since 25 August, UN estimated that three hundred and seventy-nine thousand additional people who have fled Burma to Bangladesh.
See our infographic : In Burma, exodus of RohingyaWhat is international community ?
at request of United Kingdom and Sweden, security Council of united nations has decided to meet on Wednesday to discuss this dossier, despite resistance of China, main economic partner of Burma.
on Tuesday, Beijing reiterated its "support" to Burma and to "efforts" of burmese authorities to "maintain stability" in west of country.
leaders of muslim-majority countries, including Bangladesh, Indonesia, Turkey and Pakistan, have called on Naypyidaw [ capital of country since 2005] to put an end to violence in Arakan State. On a visit in refugee camps, bangladesh prime minister, Sheikh Hasina, has said that it was up to Burma to "solve" this crisis.That answers burmese government ?
in Face of an unprecedented crisis, silence of daw Aung San Suu Kyi, special adviser to State and spokesman of presidency, going well with international community. Pressed to react, Nobel peace Prize has preferred to cancel a trip for UN general Assembly planned for end of September. It has, however, announced that it would send to nation of burma in a televised speech on September 19 for " talk of national reconciliation and peace ".
last year, rostrum of united Nations, Ms. Aung San Suu Kyi, who heads de facto government of burma from April 2015, had promised to support rights of Rohingya.
His task is particularly complicated by rise of buddhist extremists in recent years and by large autonomy of burmese army, which remains all-powerful in this area of conflict.
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