Mabrur Ahmed – Rohingya Project (17-08-12)
Reports have been flooding in this afternoon of a new wave of attacks on Rohingya this afternoon leaving hundreds homeless and looking for shelter on foot during toreential monsoon rains whilst others were left dead. The recent clashes have been reported from 4 villages near Rauthedoung were as many as 12 have been killed with 1,000 Rohingya displaced as well as in 3 villages south of Maungdaw where 3 people have been killed this Thursday.
In the minutes leading up to sunset as many Rohingya were preparing to open their fasts (Ramadhan) hundreds of Rakhine activists armed with sticks, batons and other weaponry forced their way into Rohingya houses in three adjacent villages. As the villagers attempted to fight back against the Rakhine who had violated their homes, Lun Htin and Nasaka (Burmese armed forces and paramilatary) opened live rounds of fire on the villagers. Three men and one woman have been shot dead whilst many others have been injured. In total the three entire villages are being evacuated with the Rohingya unsure of where they are to move to next. Whilst one of the sources was describing the events , shooting and wailing could be herad in the background.
In a seperate incident, but most likely part of this new wave of violence, four villages near Rathedoung were attacked late last night, Wednesday, leaving more than 12 dead and over 1,000 Rohingya displaced. Similar to incidents in Maungdaw today, Rakhine had attacked the villages and were backed up by Burmese armed forces and paramilitary servicemen. The forces pushed the Rohingya villages from their homes, across the river and now the camp of 1,000 are moving north through mountainour terrains and during monsoon season looking for shelter. 12 people have been confirmed dead – 8 were shot dead and 4 more have lost their lives battling against the elements whilst being shelterless.
As international media have recently been reporting from the region and as an aid deal has been agreed by the President with OIC, this is seen as the final, brutal wave against the Rohingya uring the recent clashes. It is feared that this move will be drawn out over many days surely, many more lives will be lost.
For more information on this developing story, visit Restless Beings
The Restless Beings organisation that is spearheading the call for human rights for Rohingya Muslims in Burma has once again brought Cii radio listeners up to date with the latest from within the country..
Mabrur Ahmed from Restless Beings said, “Last week we had released a video about the latest that had come out of the Arakan region where the Rohingya live. There hasn’t been any new footage that has come out since then.”
A UN rapporteur has also been sent to the area and was tasked with investigating what the actual situation was. Ahmed was however skeptical whether a true reflection would be possible.
“We have been receiving reports that the Burmese government has been making arrangements to shield the UN guy from seeing the real situation.”
According to Ahmed the violence has taken place in three towns, Mangdao, Sittwe and Buthidaung. In Mangdao there are several refugee camps. Some are Rohingyan only and others Rakhine people from the opposing majority ethnic group. In the other two towns there are only Rohingyan refugee camps.
“When the UN rapporteur came to Burma he was only taken to the Rakhine camps in Mangdao. Eventually he did ask to see the situation Bhuthidaung but when he got there the Rohingyans had been evacuated overnight by the Burmese military. So a picture has been created for the UN rapporteur which is not as severe as we know it to be truly,” said Ahmed.
Yesterday the Bangladesh government also took the decision to stop three humanitarian aid organisations serving Rohingyas along its border with Burma.
Ahmed confirmed that Burmese monks have supported the oppression of the Rohingyas. He also lambasted the Dalai Lama for his silence once again while Muslims were being persecuted.
“The Rakhine community itself is a very conservative Bhuddist community and there are a lot of monks amongst their ranks. Now the monks have actually been calling for the shunning of the Muslims and to ban the Muslims from Burma and to move them to any other country. It is shocking because around the world we revere the monks to be the protectors of peace and peace loving people who don’t even kill an ant. And the Dalai Lama is the head of the Buddhists movement and he has refrained from any comment,” said Ahmed.
Restless Beings held a protest at the Olympics after the opening ceremony last week and Ahmed called for international solidarity in support of the Rohingya Muslims.
“In the 1970’s and 80’s when Apartheid was alive in South Africa, South Africa was banned from international competitions. Right now the Burmese government and in particular the president has made open racist statements…and still Burma are not being given any cold shoulder by the international community. Not on a sporting level, not on an economic level and not on a political level.”
Ahmed urged people to take some sort of action. International media have started issuing reports on the situation. Restless beings is also working on a coalition of charities. “The UNHCR and the World Food Programme are the only two in Burma. They are still proving to be quite difficult to react to what we are asking for which is to get more foreign aid in,” said Ahmed.
“I urge everyone in South Africa to do what we did in Turkey. We had the issue trending on twitter and facebook and as a result we got media coverage. As a result the prime Minister of Turkey made an international statement to the authorities in Burma to stop what is going on. And that started with the people. We need to do the same thing in South Africa. Pressure from social media, from calling on newspapers, pressure to our local and national government and then eventually what we can do is go to an international level.”
Vying for Gold in Brutality – The Olympics of Tyrants
It is indeed disgusting that the majority of newspapers are dominated by news on the Olympic games whilst not a single newspaper has shed light upon the genocide which is taking place in Burma!
Are our priorities so warped that we place fun and games above the pain and
suffering of human lives! What about the fun and games of another kind which the newspapers are overlooking! Murder, torture, rape, and other such atrocities has DEFINITELY become a form of fun and games to many!
On the one hand we have countries vying with each other to earn gold, silver and bronze medals for the highest sporting achievements! China, Australia and South africa all took gold!
On the other hand we have countries vying with each other to earn the highest
achievements in brutality! Countries which are vying with each other to see who comes out tops in inflicting the most terror upon innocent men, women and children!
Burma has earned a gold medal for its genocide against the Rohingyas! Israel has earned a gold medal for terrorising the Palestinians! The USA has earned a gold medal for its operations in Iraq and Afghanistan! India has earned gold for its brutality upon the Kashmiris!
Crowds at the 2012 olympics in London are shouting and screaming in excitement whilst crowds in other parts of the world are screaming and shouting in excruciating pain and suffering!
A great number of cameras are dedicatedly focused on the action at the 2012
Olympics in London, capturing the THRILLING moments to be shared with the entire world! Why is it that there is not a single camera focussed on the “fun” and “games” in BURMA to capture the CHILLING moments to be shared with the entire world?
We hope and pray that as the saying goes “ALL GOOD THINGS HAVE TO COME TO AN END” so do we hope and pray that “ALL BAD THINGS HAVE TO COME TO AN END”