Ongoing Persecution of Rohingya Muslims, A Brief Review

The UN human rights office on Friday reported that around 45,000 Rohingya have apparently sought refuge in areas close to the border with Bangladesh due to the continuing conflict.

The Rohingya, a predominantly Muslim ethnic minority group, have faced systematic persecution and violence at the hands of the Myanmar military for years.

The main reason for the genocide of Burmese Muslims by the Myanmar army is rooted in long-standing religious and ethnic tensions. The Myanmar government has denied the Rohingya people citizenship and basic rights, labeling them as illegal immigrants despite their centuries-old presence in the country.

UN Estimates place the Rohingya death toll well above 30,000 since the brutal crackdown in 2017, while nearly 700 have lost their lives during attempts to flee the war-torn country by see.

Many Rohingya have fled Myanmar, seeking refuge in neighboring countries like Bangladesh, where over 1 million Rohingya refugees have arrived. Other destinations include Malaysia, Indonesia, and even as far as Saudi Arabia and Turkey.

Hundreds of the long-persecuted community have perished in overcrowded, under-resourced camps in Bangladesh, where their most basic rights have been stripped due to alleged lack of funding and long-held discrimination against the Muslims.

The international community has condemned the Myanmar government’s actions, with the United Nations describing it as a “textbook example of ethnic cleansing.” However, the response from global organizations has been criticized as largely ineffective in stopping the violence and protecting the Rohingya people.

In the face of this ongoing crisis, some Rohingya have taken measures to defend themselves, including forming self-defense groups. But the power imbalance against the Myanmar military makes their efforts extremely challenging.

The plight of the Rohingya people remains a pressing humanitarian and human rights issue that demands urgent attention and action from the international community.

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