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12 September 2017, 09:02 | Christie Tate
Obliterated village burned by Rohingya, Myanmar police say
Almost 300,000 Rohingya have fled to the border with Bangladesh, escaping a violent crackdown by the Myanmar government on ARSA following attacks on 30 police posts and an army base on August 25.
Almost 313,000 Rohingya have fled to neighboring Bangladesh as fighting intensified between government forces and Rohingya militants, according to the United Nations refugee agency, or UNHCR. "This is an alarming number", Tan said. "There is a lot of pressure on relief agencies to accommodate the rising numbers". The report said $77 million in funding was needed to deliver urgent aid to the new arrivals.
Rights monitors and fleeing Rohingya say the army and Rakhine vigilantes have unleashed a campaign of arson aimed at driving out the Muslim population.
Earlier, the head of Malaysia's coastguard said it would not turn away Rohingya and was willing to provide them temporary shelter, although it is unlikely any refugees would travel hundreds of kilometres south by sea during the monsoon season.
The violence erupted following an attack by a Rohingya insurgent group on police and military posts in Rakhine, leading to a violent offensive by the Myanmar Army.
Rohingya Muslims who have made it across the border in Bangladesh have offered many eyewitness accounts of the brutal tactics used by Myanmarese soldiers against the Muslims. Dozens of Rohingya have died in capsizings since the exodus began, and there are other dangers as well.
Nevertheless, the ongoing violence needs to be effectively addressed and some mediation mechanisms put in place because it undermines and crowds out the good news and prospects in a country that has completely turned around over the past six years with elections and democratic rule after five decades of systematic misrule under military dictatorship.
"Authorities must immediately end this abhorrent practice against people who are already fleeing persecution", said Tirana Hassan, Amnesty International's crisis response director. While the ragtag Rohingya militancy does have loose support from individuals in Saudi Arabia and Pakistan, most analysts regard it as an operation focused on defense and revenge against the Burmese military.
"The deadly silence of the global community who claim to be defending human rights is unbelievable", asserted the cleric, "they say that they are condemning the crimes, but will the issue get solved by just paying a lip service of condemnation?"
"I have no words to condemn Myanmar", she told lawmakers Monday night, noting that Bangladesh had always been protesting the persecution of Rohingya Muslims in Buddhist-majority Myanmar.
The Rohingya plight is sparking concern and protests in many nations, and Myanmar's de facto leader Aung San Suu Kyi has been criticised for failing to protect them. She has faced criticism for failing to condemn the violence, leaving her global reputation in tatters. "I think it is a little unreasonable to expect us to resolve everything in 18 months", she added.
Officials said they were particularly concerned that some of the homegrown groups would recruit students from the thousands of Islamic seminaries in the country to fight for the rights of the Rohingya.
On Friday, the office of Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak announced his government was launching a mission to deliver humanitarian aid to refugee camps clustered along the Bangladesh-Myanmar border. It says about 30,000 non-Muslims have been displaced.
The Rohingya have been stripped of rights over the years and more than 120,000 live in IDP camps in the Rakhine capital Sittwe following anti-Muslim riots there in 2012. "TİKA has distributed 1,000 tons of humanitarian aid".
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