THE ROHINGYA CRISIS: A Brief Overview, Multiple Perspectives and Ways To Tackle Them
Politics | Sep 26, 2017 / by Ashwanth Aravind
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The ROHINGYA  CRISIS has been a ticking time bomb issue for the Myanmar Government. For number of years, it has been reported of mass human right violations, mass deportation and taking refuge in neighbouring countries. This CRISIS has been termed as “ethnic cleansing” by various media outlets.

 

What have been denied to them?

The Rohingyas are people who belong to the Rakhine State in Myanmar. They have also been called Bengalis by the Buddhist Majority. They are predominantly Muslims. The citizenship law of Myanmar was made and amended in a manner where the Rohingyas have been deliberately denied citizenship of the country where they have been settled on or before 1931. The Rohingyas are also the most backward community in the nation as a result of them being denied the right to education. They live in utmost poverty where the cant even afford basic healthcare and rarely are they being treated in hospitals. Admission in hospitals can also be denied to them under law. The basic necessities given to every human being born in the Earth deliberated upon by the Universal Declaration Of Human Rights, are not being given by State. In short, The Rohingyas are discriminated and abused. A classic case of Majority Domination over the Minority.

 

For us the people of its neighbouring nation, the question arises , “Is it really ethnic cleansing?” “If it is, What should we really do?”

 

The term “Ethnic Cleansing” has come to common usage ever since the ugly truth of holocaust was revealed to the entirety of the world. It is the act of wiping out an entire race or community in a country where they are inherently belonging to the minority faction. This act has been condemned and deemed illegal in the both national and international forums.

This issue has now emerged as one of the most talked issues in the world. One thing to be noted – The ROHINGYAS have been denied basic human rights and citizenship in the country of their origin for over two decades. The Myanmar Government has rendered them stateless. This has made few members of the community susceptible to taking the wrong strides but the rest ; “The Innocents” allowed to suffer the plight.

 

Though in her speech addressing the concerns of the global community at yet another refugee crisis , The De-facto Head of the State of the nation brushed off every allegation made against her government. Aunt San Suu Kyi being a Nobel Peace Laureate has the moral authority to resolve the issue but instead has left the matter to escalate out of hands. She didn’t address the Mass crimes perpetrated by security forces against the community, the “Clearance Operations” to wipe out Rohingya populated villages and traditional abuse against the community. Later, Officials from Myanmar conducted talks with Russia and China to stop any resolution against the country in the matter. They brushed off any international effort in the matter as well.

 

Another issue while addressing the ROHINGYA CRISIS is that of the limited media coverage allowed by the government especially in the Rakhine State. Therefore not allowing media to report on various violations with the example of human cases, thus not being able to muster eyes of the world on the matter.

 

With the Refugees rushing towards Bangladesh, the Bangladeshi Government has done commendable performance in regulating the influx in their borders. Over 400,000 refugees have been placed in camps in the nation. In recent address to the United Nations, The Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina slammed the Myanmar Government's efforts in the matter and emphasized their return to the country of their origin. She demanded that the ethnic cleansing in the Rakhine State be stopped, the return of the Refugees back to Myanmar along with proper rehabilitation, an UN fact finding mission and the unconditional implementation of Kofi Annan’s Commission Report.

 

What’s puzzling is the fact that Aung San Suu Kyi was the one who requested the Former Secretary-General of the UNITED NATIONS, Mr. Kofi Annan to form a committee and advise her on the matter of Rohingyas in the Rakhine State. But now is completely oblivious to the recommendations of the committee . It had addressed the citizenship woes of the community and humanitarian activity for them.

 

The Home Ministry of India termed the ROHINGYAS “threat to national security” before settling on the policy on deeming them illegal immigrants and deportation of the migrants admitted. They justified their act by stating that they did not sign the 1951 Refugee Convention Treaty.  A matter which was revealed in the aftermath was the Mass Graves of Hindus in Rakhine, a predominantly Rohingya populated state. It has to be noted by people that it was orchestrated by a certain radical group, so scrutinizing an entire community for its actions would only reap serious repercussions in the future. The idea of empathy towards the refugees was also put forward by Mr. Varun Gandhi, a prominent member of the ruling party. He suggested vetting for every refugee allowed in the country and also supported his view of not deporting the allowed refugees by using the Article 17 of the SAARC Terrorism Protocol Treaty which stated that a country is not allowed to deport anyone who might persecuted because of their faith.

The UNHRC should look into the human right violations perpetrated against the community. The UNHCR should ensure basic amenities are offered to the Refugees. Every Refugee camp has to be regulate regularly, so as to keep it from overcrowding. Measures should be taken to recognise refugees from extremists. Refugees in equal number should be taken in by all its neighbouring nation, so as to ensure that not one country is burdened with the influx, should the matter further damage peace in the region. The final decision and solution lies with the Myanmar Government who will have to choose granting citizenship equal to that of the Burmese to the ROHINGYAS, to assure that their international image doesn’t worsen and peace within their country is achieved . With accordance to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, these Refugees must be given fair opportunities, education and access to healthcare. On the greater note of the values of humanity, we as responsible global citizens should engage in plausible thinking and help these Refugees

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Written By Ashwanth Aravind

Advocate for Refugees and Human Rights. Decoding The Trail of Major Policies and Educating the world.

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