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ARAKAN

Monthly

News and Analysis of the Arakan Rohingya National Organisation, Arakan ( Burma)

Tabligue Centre, Shikdapara, MDW.


The Central Mosque and Islamic Preaching Cen-
tre at Shikdapara, Maungdaw, Arakan State was
closed and converted into Fire brigade by the
Burmese Military Regime.

Volume 1, Issue 6
JUNE 2009
www.ro-
www.rohingya.org
News and Analysis of the Arakan Rohingya National Organisation, Arakan ( Burma)

In this Issue Editorial: Burma Update

U
S Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has
Editorial: Burma Update 2 said Washington is “Very Seriously” con-
cerned about the transfer of nuclear
technology from North Korea to Burma. It would
Rohingya participates in 45th standing destablishing the region, it would pose a direct
threat to Burma’s neighbours, she said. Major
committee meeting of UNHCR 3 industrialized nations known as G8 have issued
a call for Burma to free all political prisoners,
including Daw Aung San Suu Kyi. The statement
Army Commander rapes girl in said Burma’s junta failed to take the opportunity
of Ban Ki- Moon’s visit to Burma. Burmese lead-
Maungdaw 5 ers denied Mr. Ban’s request to meet with Suu
kyi during his visit to Burma. The country’s UN
envoy said that his government is planning to
Burma: End Abuses Against Rohingya amnesty prisoners to enable them to take part in
national elections next year, after the request of
5 Mr. Ban. But addressing the UN Security Coun-
cil, ambassador Than Swe did not say whether
they would include Aung San Suu Kyi. It freed19
Burma’s Suu Kyi Truns 64 6 out of 3,000 political detainees in February af-
ter the visit of an UN representative. Critics say
next year’s elections, will be a sham designed to
We condemn Nasaka’s act of piracy legitimate to the current ruling junta. If there
was an “unjust outcome” in Suu Kyi,s trial,”
Government must take a firm stand the international will need to follow the Secre-
tary Generals lead and respond robustly,” said
with Yangon 9 British envoy Philip Parhan.Chinese envoy Liu
Zhenmin said China, which has blocked security
Council action on Burma in the past through it’s
Rohingya Belong to Burma 10 Veto remained opposed to any sanction,’ Inter-
national Community should treat Burma with
less arrogance and prejudice’, Mr Liu said. U
POINT OF EXIT-ENTRY (POE) NO- Aung Din, the executive director of the US Cam-
paign for Burma, said it is time for Mr. Ban to
1. MAUNG DAW 12 ask the Security Council to pass a global arms
embargo against the regime. The SPDC is buy-
ing arms from North Korea and building nuclear
Survival of Rohingyas in Arakan at plant near Maymyo with the help of China, Rus-
sia and North Korea .Strong and meaningful
stake 13 arms embargo must be against the SPDC. The
SPDC must be tried at ICJ for it crimes against
humanity and War Crimes. The amnesty of Bur-
World Refugee Day 2009 14 ma should include Suu Kyi, Min Ko Naing and
Rohingya MP Kyaw Min and family.

Rohingya cemetery seized by TOC in “Just as appalling in terms of human rights has
been occurring in Burma, epidemic levels of
Maungdaw 16 forced labour, the recruitment of tens of thou-
sands of child soldiers, wide spread sexual vi-
olence, extra judicial killings and torture, and
more than a million displaced people. One statis-

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tic may stand out above others, ing situation threatening the there can be no peace, not in a
however: the destruction, dis- very existence of Rohingyas nation, a region, throughout the
placement, or damage of over and daunting challenges upon world. In Burma at the moment
3,000 ethnic national villages them by the world cruelest and there is no rule of law, which
many burned to the ground. longest lasting brutal military means there can be no peace
dictatorships. So the Rohingyas in the country.” The Burmese
That is comparable to the num- are fleeing from their hearths army seems to think that they
ber of villages estimated to have and homes in search of better are entitled to impose their
destroyed in Darfur. Yet, for too tomorrow. torturous behavior on Burmese
many years, the world has done people, especially on Rohing-
little to address these human Richard Boucher, the assis- yas.
rights abuses. The world cannot tance Secretary of State of
wait while the military regime USA, rightly said that,” Despite
continues its atrocities against having a presence in the area Rohingya partici-
the people of Burma. The day extending back to the seventh
may come for a referral of the century, the Rohingyas are not
pates in 45th stand-
situation in Burma to the Inter- considered by the junta to be ing committee
national Criminal Court or the Burmese citizens and suffer meeting of UNHCR
establishment of special tribu- legal, economic and social dis- News - Kaladan Press
nal to deal with Burma.”(Crimes crimination. They faced severe FRIDAY, 26 JUNE 2009 13:37
in Burma by International restrictions in traveling, engage

D
Human Rights Clinic Harvard in economic activity, register r. Kamal Hussein, rep-
law School). The Noble Peace births, deaths and marriages resentative of Burmese
Prize winner humanitarian aid in the community, and obtain Rohingya Community in
organization, Medicines Sans an education”. Bangladesh’s Australia (BRCA), presented a
Frontiers(MSF), during its long Foreign Minister Dr. Dipu Moni statement (drafted) on behalf
time operation at the Rohingya strongly refuting Burmese of NGOs across the world at the
refugee camps in Bangladesh stand on the origin of the Ro- 45th Standing Committee meet-
and later visited Arakan com- hingyas asserts that Rohingyas ing of the UN High Commis-
mented about Rohingya as “one were one of the many races that sioner for Refugees (UNHCR)
of the ten world populations in make up Myanmar’s total popu- on June 23 in Geneva, Switzer-
danger of existence and surviv- lation. “She reminded that the land, U Kyaw Maung, and the
al”. In Arakan massive human Rohingyas have been in Myan- President of BRCA from Aus-
rights violations is going on very mar for centuries and many of tralia said.
rapidly including denial of citi- them have even hold high posts
zenship, restriction on move- in the Burmese government. The grand opening speech of
ment and marriage, rape, slave Just by excluding from any list June 23 meeting was chaired
labor, forced relocation, forc- will not make them anything by the Ambassador of Costa
ible seizure of their lands and other than an ethnic entity of Rica who visited Malaysia and
property’, arrest, torture, kill- Myanmar,”said by the FM. She Thailand to visit refugees quite
ing, settlement of Rakhine and said Rohingyas who are pre- recently and gave a speech on
Burmese in the name of model dominantly Muslim residing in the Burmese refugee situation
villages to reduce Rohingyas northern Arakan State in west- in Asia and then in other coun-
into minority in the northern ern Burma, had national radio tries, according to Dr. Kamal
Arakan state where the Rohing- programmes in their language from Geneva. “It is a great hon-
yas are in majority, compelling in Burma. or for me, for BRCA, the Ro-
Rohingyas to become stateless hingya community and also for
or refugee, restriction on free- Daw Aung San Suu Kyi consis- the Australian team as I have
dom of religion, no renovation tently maintained that “Even been given the chance to pres-
of the places of Muslim’s wor- those who do not believe in hu- ent a statement (drafted) on be-
ship and religious schools, man rights must certainly agree half of NGOs across the world,”
extortion,taxition and denial of that the rule of law is most im- said Dr. Kamal.
all basic rights. The deteriorat- portant. Without the rule of law

JUNE 
News and Analysis of the Arakan Rohingya National Organisation, Arakan ( Burma)

U Kyaw Maung more said.


“I would like to thank Caritas Aus-
tralia for helping us,” he added.

“We, at the BRCA worked hard with


the concerned authorities from Aus-
tralia for resettling Rohingya refu-
gees from Bangladesh in 2008-2009
and are hoping more Rohingya ref-
ugees will be settled in future,” he
more added.

“I hope the participation and pre-


sentation will help Rohingyas and
Burma not only in the NGO forum but
also in the government forum. Now
After attending the meeting, Dr. here in the UN, the practical action
Kamal told Kaladan News, “We of the Rohingyas’ plight is about to be decided for the next year
need at least three steps of lob- and also for the next five years,” said Dr. Kamal. The UN High
bying for Rohingyas or for any Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) is currently made up of 70
oppressed group in the world, member States. The Executive Committee (ExCom) meets in Ge-
such as meetings and explain- neva annually to review and approve UNHCR’s programs and the
ing to the policy makers, politi- budget, offer advice on international protection, and discuss a
cians , NGOs and UN agencies, wide range of other issues with UNHCR and its intergovernmen-
about what is happening in the tal and non-governmental partners.
community such as oppression,
human rights violation etc; we NGOs are present at these meetings and offer statements on each
need to go through media and of the agenda items. RCUSA members are actively involved in the
researches to write about what drafting of these statements. The International Council of Volun-
is happening to the community tary Agencies (ICVA), founded in 1962, is a global network that
and need to participate for tak- brings together human rights, humanitarian, and development
ing action, practical decision NGOs as an advocacy alliance for humanitarian action. Focusing
and policy drafting: and pur- on humanitarian and refugee policy issues, ICVA draws upon the
sue Governments and United work of its members at the field level and brings their experi-
Nations. ences to international decision-making forums.

“We sent our representative Dr.


Kamal Hussein to participate
in UNHCR’s Geneva meetings
to raise awareness about the
plight of hundreds of thousands
of Rohingya refugees across
Asia,” according to U Kyaw
Maung, the President of BRCA
in Australia. “BRCA works tire-
lessly with the cooperation of
Refugee Council of Australia
and the Centre for Refugee
Research UNSW and Amnesty
international of Australia to
provide stronger support from
national and international lev-
els for the Rohingya refugees,”

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Army Command- tered the house with a pistol Burma: End Abuses
and raped Noor Khatun after
er rapes girl in Against Rohingya
threatening other family mem-
Maungdaw HUMAN RIGHTS WATCH
bers. The collaborator stood
News - Kaladan Press

S
guard outside the house. At the
FRIDAY, 12 JUNE 2009 outheast Asian Countries
meantime, it was raining very
Should Pressure Burma
heavily and the screams of the

M
aungdaw, Arakan and Protect Those Who
victim’s family members could
State: An Army battal- Flee
not be heard. So, no one came
ion Commander Lt. Col (New York, May 26, 2009) – Bur-
to the rescue, according to a
Kyaw Thura (42) raped a young ma’s neighbors should press the
close relative of the victim.
Rohingya girl on June 10, in Burmese military government
Maungdaw Township. The Com- to end systematic abuses of
The following day morning, the
mander came to Maungdaw Rohingya Muslims and protect
victim accompanied by her old
Township from Buthidaung those who flee to their shores,
mother complained to the local
Township to supervise erecting Human Rights Watch said in a
people and the Village Peace
of fences on the Burma-Bangla- report released today. Human
and Development Council
desh border, said a close rela- Rights Watch said that the As-
(VPDC) members to take it up
tive of the victim. The victim sociation of Southeast Asian
with authorities and take ac-
is identified as Noor Khatun Nations (ASEAN) has failed to
tion against the culprit. But, no
(24), daughter of late Noor Mo- address the Rohingya’s plight
one dared to report the rape to
hamed, hailed from Dargua- adequately.
the authorities as they feared
dil (Kyauk Hlaikhar ) Para of The 12-page report, “Perilous
retaliation by the army.
Maungdaw Township. She has Plight: Burma’s Rohingya Take
only her old mother and two to the Seas,” examines the
The widow, mother of the vic-
younger sisters, and has no causes of the exodus of Rohing-
tim, did not get any help from
male member. ya people from Burma and Ban-
any quarter to complain to
gladesh, and their treatment
higher authorities. If there is no
The commander with 110 sol- once in flight to Southeast Asian
action against the rapist, rape
diers have been living at Ky- countries. Persecution and hu-
cases will increase in northern
auk Hlaikhar government pri- man rights violations against
Arakan, said a village elder on
mary school which is very close the Rohingya inside Burma, es-
condition of anonymity. One of
to the victim’s house since they pecially in Arakan state, have
the VPDC members said, “If
were transferred to Maungdaw persisted for over 20 years,
we inform of the incident to
township. The Commander ob- with insufficient international
the concerned authorities, the
served the situation of the vic- attention. Such abuses include
army will take action directly
tim’s house and also collected extrajudicial killings, forced
or indirectly against us. At that
information about the victim labor, religious persecution,
time, no one will come to save
through the local collaborator, and restrictions on movement,
us.”
said a local villager on condi- all exacerbated by a draconian
The Burmese Army which came
tion of anonymity. citizenship law that leaves the
to Maungdaw Township on April
Rohingya stateless.
2009 from Buthidaung Town-
On that day, at about 1 am, the “The treatment of the Rohing-
ship to supervise the erection
Commander , accompanied by ya in Burma is deplorable – the
of fences on the Burma-Bangla-
a local collaborator went to the Burmese government doesn’t
desh border, cheated local vil-
victim’s house and asked the just deny Rohingya their basic
lagers of wages. Villagers are
victim’s mother through the rights, it denies they are even
involved in forced labour, have
collaborator to open the door as Burmese citizens,” said Elaine
to pay donation, face arbitrary
Nasaka (Burma’s border secu- Pearson, deputy Asia director
harassment, are being looted of
rity force) had come for check- at Human Rights Watch. “In-
their vegetables and fish from
ing the family list. Hearing the stead of sidestepping the is-
the shrimp projects, and Ro-
voice of the local collaborator, sue, ASEAN should be pressing
hingya girls are being raped,
the victim’s mother opened the Burma’s military rulers to end
said a college student
door. The army Commander en- their brutal practices.”

JUNE 
News and Analysis of the Arakan Rohingya National Organisation, Arakan ( Burma)

The Burmese military govern- its February summit meeting, give them protection.”
ment’s violent and discrimina- and Burmese officials simply
tory treatment, exacerbated denied the Rohingya were from Burma’s Suu Kyi
by chronic poverty, has pushed Burma, but said they would ac-
many Rohingya to flee to neigh- cept any ”Bengali” who could
Truns 64
By Aman Ullah
boring Bangladesh, where liv- prove Burmese citizenship.

I
ing standards in refugee camps A meeting in April of the Aus-
n 1988, Nelson Mandela
remain primitive and options tralia and Indonesia-led mul-
reached his 70th birth-
for resettlement slim. From tilateral grouping, the Bali
day. He was languishing in
Bangladesh, every year thou- Process for People Smuggling,
prison, having already spent 26
sands of Rohingya men and Trafficking in Persons, and Re-
years locked up by the apart-
boys pay to be smuggled to Ma- lated Transnational Crime, also
heid regime in South Africa.
laysia via other Southeast Asian could not reach a consensus on
In Wembley Stadium some of
countries. Some are fleeing for a regional mechanism for deal-
the world’s greatest entertain-
their lives; others are economic ing with the Rohingya.
ers - Stevie Wonder, Eric Clap-
migrants seeking to feed their “ASEAN’s collective inertia on
ton, Sting, Annie Lennox and
families. Because they lack the Rohingya’s plight is a stain
George Michael performed
official papers, almost every- on its reputation,” said Pearson.
for a political prisoner whose
where they go, they live in fear “ASEAN’s inaction also sends a
face the world hadn’t seen for a
of arrest and possible repatria- clear message to Burma’s gen-
quarter of a century.
tion to Burma. erals that their horrendous
On the other side of the planet,
In January 2009, cameras cap- persecution can continue.”
Daw Aung San Suu Kyi turned
tured boatloads of starving In “Perilous Plight,” Human
64 on June 19; 2009and spent
Rohingya arriving in Southern Rights Watch calls on Burma’s
her birthday locked in prison.
Thailand and Indonesia. The military government to rec-
She has been detained for over
photos, which show Thai navy ognize Rohingya as citizens,
13 years by the Burmese re-
ships towing boats of Rohingya ensure their freedom of move-
gime and for campaigning for
back into the open seas to deter ment, and give human rights
human rights and democracy
further arrivals, gave brief in- and humanitarian organiza-
in Burma.
ternational prominence to the tions access to Arakan state.
On May 18th she was put on tri-
issue. Thousands of other jour- Bangladesh, India, Thailand,
al, charged with breaching the
neys each year go unnoticed. Malaysia, and Indonesia should
terms of her house arrest after
In late 2008 and early 2009, the press Burma’s military govern-
an American man, John Yettaw,
number of Rohingya departing ment to end abuses, the report
swam to her house and refused
from Bangladesh and Burma says. They should also stop
to leave. The Military Junta is
was estimated at 6,000, double forcibly returning Rohingya to
using the visit as an opportu-
the number from the previous Burma where they face perse-
nity to extend her detention,
year. cution, and they should alter
which was expected to expire
Scores are feared to have died their laws and procedures to
this month. Her trial is ongoing
as a result of Thailand’s “push- ensure that an appropriate de-
and she could face a further
back” policy. Some of the sur- termination of the refugee sta-
five years in detention.
vivors who reached Indonesia tus can take place for non-citi-
Like the South African leader
or the Indian Andaman Islands zens who reach their shores.
Nelson Mandela, Aung San Suu
described how Burmese naval “Persecution of the Rohingya
Kyi has become an internation-
personnel who had intercepted is nothing new, so it’s time for
al symbol of heroic and peace-
their boat on the open seas tor- Burma’s neighbors to act to
ful resistance in the face of
tured and beat them. stop them from being further
oppression. Desmond Tutu of
ASEAN leaders have admit- abused,” said Pearson. “Rath-
South African termed Daw Suu
ted that a regional solution is er than sending them back to
as the Burma’s Mandela.
necessary to address the an- Burma or into the open sea,
She was born on June 19th, 1945
nual exodus of Rohingya. Yet countries receiving Rohingya
to Burma’s independence hero,
ASEAN did not place the Ro- should determine if they are
Aung San, who was assassinat-
hingya on the formal agenda of refugees or asylum seekers and
ed when she was only two years

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www.rohingya.org
old.In 1960 she went to India with her mother Daw Khin Kyi, who had been appointed Burma’s
ambassador to Delhi. Four years later she went to Oxford University in the UK, where she studied
philosophy, politics and economics. There she met her future husband. After stints of living and
working in Japan and Bhutan, she settled down to be an English don’s housewife and raise their
two children, Alexander and Kim. But Burma was never far away from her thoughts.
For Aung San Suu Kyi the turning point in this process occurred in the spring of 1988. `It was a
quiet evening in Oxford like many others - the last day of March 1988,’ her husband, Michael Aris,
recalled. `Our sons were already in bed and we were reading when the telephone rang. Suu picked
up the phone to learn that her mother had
suffered a severe stroke. She put the phone
down and at once start- ed to pack. I had
a premonition that our lives would change
for ever.’
Aung San Suu Kyi had ar- rived in Rangoon
at the beginning of April 1998. She had no
weapons, troops or band of followers, but
she saw at first hand the brutality of the
military and she knew the fate awaiting
the countless demonstra- tors rounded up
on the streets.
Within a few weeks of her arriving in the
city, General Ne Win’s twenty-six-year-
long dictatorial rule came to an end as
he announced plans to allow the country
to decide its fate in a referendum.
Standing in front of half a million protes-
tors on 26 August, speak- ing under a poster
of her father by the Shwedagon Pa-
goda, Aung San Suu Kyi told the crowd: `I
could not, as my father’s daughter, remain
indifferent to all that was going on.’ Within
weeks, Aung San Suu Kyi and colleagues
had established the Na- tional League for
Democracy, and she became its general secretary. When her mother, Daw Khin Kyi, died in Decem-
ber of that year, the funeral procession turned into a peaceful protest, and Aung San Suu Kyi’s life
changed irrevocably as she embarked on an exhaustive tour of the country, demanding democracy
and human rights.
Inspired by the non-violent campaigns of US civil rights leader Martin Luther King and India’s Ma-
hatma Gandhi, she organised rallies and travelled around the country, calling for peaceful demo-
cratic reform and free elections. The military regime responded to the uprising with brute force,
killing up to 5,000 demonstrators. Unable to maintain its grip on power, the regime was forced to
call a general election in 1990.
As Aung San Suu Kyi began to campaign for the NLD, she and many others were detained by the re-
gime. Despite being held under house arrest, the NLD went on to win a staggering 82% of the seats
in parliament. The regime never recognized the results of the election. She has been in and out
of detention ever since and has spent more than 13 of the past 19 years in some form of detention
under Burma’s military regime.
For dedicating her life for human rights and democracy she has received not only the Nobel Peace
Prize in 1991 but also a dozens of International prestigious awards. Millions of the people celebrat-
ed her birth day around the world. An impressive collection of luminaries, Hollywood stars like
Brad Pitt and Julia Roberts, celebrities Madonna and David Beckham, Nobel laureates and world
leaders joined voices to call for the military government to release Suu Kyi.
To commemorate Aung San Suu Kyi’s 64th birthday on 19 June (her 14th in detention), local and

JUNE 
News and Analysis of the Arakan Rohingya National Organisation, Arakan ( Burma)

Burmese citizens will be hold- Drew Barrymore, David Beck- This message, posted late
ing protests and events in over ham, Bono and so many wrote Thursday, was signed by a wom-
20 cities across the world, call- 64 words: an in the United Kingdom:
ing for the release of Aung San “Nineteen years ago, the Bur- “This message isn’t going to be
Suu Kyi and the 2,156 politi- mese people chose Aung San remarkable. 64 words are not
cal prisoners currently held in Suu Kyi as their next leader. For enough for this injustice, not
Burma. The protesters will also most of those 19 years she has that 64 million would be; but I
be calling on the UNSC to step been kept under house arrest hope you find them heartening.
up the pressure on the military by the military junta that runs I am just one of many wishing
regime by establishing a global the country. We must not stand the world fairer, and you are
arms embargo on Burma. by as she is silenced again. Now one of so few self-sacrificing
Celebrities from around the is the time for the international for just that outcome. You are
world, including George Cloo- community to speak with one an inspiration, a fighting soul
ney, Yoko Ono, David Beckham, voice: Free Aung San Suu Kyi.” and an aspiration; a hero. Stay
Julia Roberts, Daniel Craig, Kim Dae-Jung, Nobel Peace strong.”While celebrations of
and Richard Branson. Ste- Winner and former President the 64th birthday of Burma’s
phen Fry, Eddie Izzard, Kevin of Korea (1997-2003) wrote 64 pro-democracy leader Aung
Spacey and Sarah Brown, have words San Suu Kyi were freely held
been “tweeting” about a new We Koreans, who have already around the world on Friday,
campaign launched on Wednes- experienced the brutal oppres- her supporters in Burma cel-
day 27 May allowing visitors to sion of a military dictatorship ebrated her birthday under the
leave a message of support for share deep compassion with, junta’s tight repression.
Burma’s imprisoned democra- and send our sincere encour- National League for Democra-
cy leader, Aung San Suu Kyi in agement to, the people of Bur- cy (NLD) sources said support-
the run up to her 64th birthday. ma. Looking back on our ex- ers held a religious ceremony
Many posted online messages perience, I believe democracy to mark her birthday early
on social networking sites and will eventually be restored in Friday morning at party head-
videos on YouTube in what hu- Burma, as long as the Burmese quarters. However, authorities
man rights groups called an un- people continue their struggle harassed one monastery not to
precedented and enormously against the military regime, send monks to perform the cer-
powerful tool to harness sup- and as long as the international emony
port for Suu Kyi and highlight community supports their ef- Aung San Suu Kyi, herself
her struggle.Thousands of sup- forts. planned to mark the day by
porters left birthday messages Women Nobel Peace Laurates, sharing food with her prison
of 64 words or less for the Nobel Maired Maguire (1976), Bet- guards. “She will celebrate her
Peace Prize laureate on a Web ty Williams (1976), Rigoberta birthday by treating the people
site created for the occasion. Manehu` Tun (1992), Jody Wil- around her to rice and choco-
British Prime Minister, Gordon liams (2003), Shirin Ebadi late cake,” said lawyer Nyan
Brown’s “64”: (2003), and Wangari Maathai Win, who left several gifts at the
“I add my voice to the growing (2004) wrote 64 words prison including a chocolate
chorus of those demanding your We, your sister Nobel Peace cake, an apple cake, three bou-
release. For too long the world Laureates, stand with you and quets of orchids and 50 lunch
has failed to act in the face of call on the governments of the boxes of Indian-style biryani
this intolerable injustice. That world to demand your immedi- rice. “She really appreciates
is now changing. The clamour ate release. Detained against the efforts and said she was
for your release is growing Burma’s own laws, your impris- sorry she wasn’t able to thank
across Europe, Asia, and the onment and trial are a stark il- everyone individually,” he
entire world. We must do all lustration of the brutality and said, noting that lawyers have
we can to make this Birthday lawlessness of the Burmese informed her of the worldwide
the last you spend without your military regime, which holds campaign but did not person-
freedom.” over 2000 democracy activists ally see her Friday.
George Clooney, Sec. Made- in prison. We look forward to a The global birthday effort is
leine Albright, Wes Anderson, day when you are finally free.

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modeled after the 1988 “Mandela at 70” campaign to free Nelson Mandela from imprisonment in
then apartheid-era South Africa. But the clamor on the Nobel laureate’s 64th birthday this month
to demand to release her made little impact in Rangoon, which has ignored calls by head of state,
ministers, other Nobel prize owners and human rights activists across the world that she be re-
leased.

We condemn Nasaka’s act of piracy


Government must take a firm stand with Yangon
The Daily Star

R
ECENT incidents of Nasaka, the Myanmar border security force, opening fire on Bangla-
deshi fishermen in what are clearly Bangladesh’s territorial waters leave us gravely con-
cerned about the situation. As reports indicate, quoting a number of our fishermen in such
areas as St. Martin’s island, the Myanmar men left at least eleven Bangladeshi fishermen injured,
with one of them in critical condition owing to bullet wound in the head. We condemn such un-
acceptable and morally untenable action on the part of the Myanmar authorities. It is not just
high-handedness or a demonstration of an aggressive posture on the part of Nasaka but in effect a
wanton act of piracy.

It is at this point pertinent to raise the question of how our own coast guards respond to such
manifestly gross behaviour. We have been informed that the coast guards could do little because
of the firing from the Myanmar forces. If that is indeed the condition in which such a vital force as
the coast guards operates, one can only ask the authorities whether they can bring themselves to a
position where they can deter such aggressive incidents from recurring in future. Indeed, in light
of the latest incident with the Myanmar security forces, what immediate steps are the Bangladesh
government planning to take, both within itself and with the Yangon authorities? It is clear that by
its latest action, which certainly cannot be considered an isolated incident, Myanmar has sought to
trample underfoot the norms on which states conduct relations with one another. By opening fire
at fishermen working within Bangladesh’s territorial waters, Nasaka stands guilty of violating the
territorial sovereignty of this country. It is, therefore, only proper that our Foreign Office dispatch
a strong protest note to its counterpart in Yangon, if it has not done so already.

The state of diplomatic ties between Myanmar and Bangladesh has generally been characterized
by tension over the past few years. The incident of Rohingya refugees fleeing their homes in Myan-
mar and finding sanctuary in Bangladesh is but a pointed instance of such fraught relations. And
of late there have been reports of more Rohingyas trickling into Bangladesh in order to escape
persecution in their country. Now, with Bangladesh’s right to its territorial waters being infringed
upon by Myanmar forces, the pressure increases on our government to raise the issue, in firm man-
ner, with the regime in Yangon. There is little question that unless such a move is made, a signifi-
cant part of Bangladesh’s economy, in this case offshore fishing, will take a battering.

JUNE 
News and Analysis of the Arakan Rohingya National Organisation, Arakan ( Burma)

Rohingya Belong 1978 Rohingya exodus to Bangladesh and struggled as the Presi-
dent of the Rohingya Refugee Welfare Organisation; died in his
to Burma
old age on 2nd March 1981 at Chittagong while in exile in Bangla-

M
desh.
uslims of Arakan cer-
tainly belong to one of
In a memorandum to the government of the Union of Burma, dat-
the indigenous races
ed 18th June 1948, Mr. Sultan Ahmed (MP) in the capacity of the
of Burma....In fact, there is no
President of Jamait-e-Ulema, North Arakan, lodged strong pro-
pure indigenous race in Burma,
test against a conspiracy to deny the Rohingyas of their right of
if they do not belong to indig-
franchise immediately after the independence. The excerpt of
enous races of Burma, we also
the memorandum follows:
cannot be taken as indigenous
1. That it is disheartening to note the decision and attitude of
races of Burma”: Sao Shwe
the government at this late stage towards the Muslims of Arakan
Thaike, the first elected Presi-
who have always identified themselves as Burman with whom
dent of the Union of Burma.
they have merged themselves in good faith that they will be treat-
ed on the same lines as Burman and will be given equal rights.
Mr. Sultan Ahmed, son of a
Those Arakanese Buddhists, historically known as Mugs have
Landlord - Molvi Akramud-
been taken as one of the pure indigenous races of Burma merely
din, was born in 1901 at Molvi
because of their religion. On following the line of artificial classi-
Para (Balukhali - Thaychaung),
fication, it will be quite clear that if the Muslims of Arakan adopt
Maungdaw, Arakan, Burma;
the religion of Lord Buddha they would be included in the in-
matriculated from the govern-
digenous races of Burma or Arakan. If this religious distinction
ment Muslim High School, Chit-
is eliminated the Muslim of Arakan will come under the same
tagong in 1919; received B.A
racial category as the Arakanese Buddhists.
degree from the University of
2. That according to history, Islam reached Arakan before
Calcutta in 1924 and B.L degree
788 .AD and it attracted the local people to come to the fold of
from Rangoon University in
Islam en masse all over Burma. Since then Islam had played an
1929; enrolled as Higher Grade
important part towards the advancement of civilisation in Ara-
pleader on 2nd December 1930
kan where Muslims and Buddhists lived side by side for centu-
and practiced law both in Ran-
ries with amity and concord as one family and ruled the country
goon and Akyab; worked as
together. Coins and medallions were issued bearing “Kalima”
an Assistant Township Officer
(the profession of faith in Islam) in Persian script. Persian was
(A.T.O) at Maungdaw from De-
the court language of Arakan and it was common for the kings to
cember 1942 to 7th June 1946;
adopt Muslim names.
joined the Judicial department
3. That the British played divide and rule in Arakan with the
and became First Class Mag-
result that many of the Arakanese Buddhist brethren bear hatred
istrate under British Govern-
against the Muslims and threat them as “Kalas” foreigners. This
ment; President of the Jamait-
hatred should no longer be bred in the Union of Burma as it had
e-Ulema, North Arakan and
been brought up in the nursery of British imperialism.
became Member of the Constit-
4. Like other indigenous races of Burma, the Muslims of
uent Assembly of the Union of
North Arakan inhabit in a sufficient contiguous territory in suffi-
Burma in 1947, and since then
cient numbers in defined geographical area having all necessary
a member of the Chamber of
characteristics of an indigenous race which can never be denied
Deputies in the Burmese Par-
by any right thinking person uninfluenced by feelings of racial
liament; admitted an advocate
and religious hatred.
of the High Court, Rangoon;
5. That different races have different names, but the Muslims
served nearly 10 years from Oc-
specially the orthodox type throughout the world to what ever na-
tober 1949 to September 1959
tionality they may belong keep, on their birth, the Islamic names
– as Parliamentary Secretary
in Arabic language. Some prefer national names, some Islamic
in the Ministry of Minorities,
name, some both national and Islamic names and this is the cus-
Ministry of Relief and Resettle-
tom with the Muslims every where in the world. Thus with Islam-
ments, and the Ministry of So-
ic names, one should not be misled that the children of the soil
cial and Religious Affairs; took
should be foreigners. It is the most lamentable and unfortunate
refuge in Bangladesh during

10 ARAKAN VOLUME 1 ISSUE 6


www.rohingya.org

tragedy that the officials of the according to them, a Kala race the Muslims to vote or stand for
government are fully ignorant - this misconceived notion has elections held in March 1947,
in this respect. As soon as they always been mooted and chal- and Mr. Sultan Ahmed and Mr.
find any person with Islamic lenged in press and platform Abdul Gaffar returned on the
names they take him as “Kalas” and finally set at rest by the au- votes of this Muslims as mem-
though he may be pure extract thorities concerned. bers of the constituent Assem-
of indigenous races and strike 8. Just before the last elec- bly and these members are still
out his name from the voters tion, the Muslims of Akyab dis- continuing in office, represent-
list. Immediate change of heart trict North constituency were ing the Akyab district North
and practice of this nature is recognised as children of the constituency and took the oath
called for. of allegiance to the Union
6. That the Muslims of Burma on the 4th Janu-
of Arakan who have their ary 1948 as members of
proud history, culture and the new parliament of the
tradition as other indig- Union of Burma.
enous races of Burma, and
there is no justification to This decision and action
take them as foreign race of the government conclu-
for the simple reason that sively proved that these
they profess Islam and Muslims as a whole or in-
keep Islamic names. If the groups are accepted as one
Kachin, Chins, Shan Karen of the indigenous races of
and Burman are brought Burma. And in this con-
together, one can easily nection, it may be pointed
distinguish from their fea- out that the Akyab district
tures who are Kachins, Ka- North constituency is non-
rens, Shan and so on.. They communal rural constitu-
are also different from one ency and these Muslims
another in their language, of Arakan belong to this
customs and culture. Simi- constituency. It is not un-
lar is the case with the derstood how they can be
Muslims of North Arakan treated under clause (IV)
who have been together section II of the Consti-
as a race in a group from tution. By so doing about
time immemorial in a territory soil and first taken as eligible 95% of the population residing
included within the Union of to vote or to stand for election in this constituency, at a stroke
Burma. If the Kachin, Chins, on the ground of their being of the pen, become foreigners,
Shans, Karen etc. are defined one of the indigenous races of which action they strongly felt
as indigenous races, there can Burma, but when the Aung San as unjust and uncalled for.
not be any question why the - Atlee Agreement was out, the 9. When section II of the
Muslims of North Arakan who government misunderstood the Constitution of the Union of
have merged themselves with position and it was notified Burma was being framed, a
the Burmans will be ignored that unless they declared them- doubt as to whether the Mus-
and will not be treated as such. selves as Burma nationals, they lims of North Arakan fell un-
Any different treatment will be would not be eligible to vote or der the section sub-clauses (1)
unjust, illegal and unconstitu- to stand for election to the con- (II) and (III), arose and in effect
tional. stituent Assembly. an objection was put in to have
7. That many of the high of- A protest was immediately the doubt cleared in respect of
ficials of the state, who do not made against this decision on the term “Indigenous” as used
even care to turn out the pages the ground of their being one of in the constitution, but it was
of the history and old records the indigenous races of Burma withdrawn on the understand-
and to trace the development and the government withheld ing and assurance of the Presi-
of the Muslims of Arakan which the first decision and allowed dent of the constituent Assem-
bly, at present His Excellency

JUNE 11
News and Analysis of the Arakan Rohingya National Organisation, Arakan ( Burma)

the President of the Union of Burma, who when circumstances can tell the same story of loyalty
approached for clarification with this question, and patience as can these Muslims.
said, “Muslims of Arakan certainly belong to one 14. By practical deed throughout Burma cam-
of the indigenous races of Burma which you rep- paign and after the war till this day, the Muslims
resent. In fact there is no pure indigenous race of North Arakan have proved that the responsi-
in Burma, and that if you do not belong to indig- bilities for maintaining peace and tranquillity
enous races of Burma, we also can not be taken in the country and for preserving in the inde-
an indigenous races of Burma.” Being satisfied pendence of the Union of Burma, with the best
with his kind explanation, the objection put in hope of getting equal treatment in all spheres of
was withdrawn. life, as developed on the all races and citizens of
10. When Hon`ble Bo Let Ya the Deputy the Union of Burma, are being discharged in the
Prime Minister, was pleased to visit Maungdaw letter and spirit.
recently, he was kind enough to expound the 15. That it is the birth right of each and every
principles laid dawn in the constitution of the Muslim of Arakan as a whole to be one of the
Union of Burma, but it appeared on the “New indigenous races of Burma, and nothing short
Times of Burma” that he addressed the inhab- of this, will satisfy this race, and justice should
itants of Maungdaw as “Chittagonians” which be done to them in their legal and constitutional
term, although it might not be his intention, was demand.
objectionable, and contradictory in relation to
the Muslims of North Arakan forming parts and Under the circumstances stated above I, in the
parcel of Indigenous races of Burma. The Prime best interest of the government and the people,
Minister U Nu expressed regrets for the use of fervently pray and confidently hope that the
wrong terms “Chittagonians” and directed that it birth right of the Muslims of North Arakan taken
should be either “Arakanese Muslims” or “Bur- as a whole as other indigenous races of Burma,
mese Muslims”. be safeguarded and they be taken as qualified
11. The term Burmese Muslims published in voters as Karenis, Karen, Chins, Rakhine etc,
the form of Press communiqué dated 9th August and the contents of the Telegram referred to
1941 was embodied in a notification dated 27th above be withdrawn immediately and that nec-
September 1941 issued by His Excellency Sir essary orders be issued without delay to avoid
Domon Smith, the Governor of Burma. This noti- further dissatisfaction and confusion.
fication still holds good under the constitutional
rights given in the constitution of the Union of
Burma. POINT OF EXIT-ENTRY (POE) NO-1.
12. That the Muslims of North Arakan owe
their allegiance to the Union of Burma and their
MAUNG DAW
By SU Ahamed
loyalty to the present government is unquestion-

T
able. But the action (Telegram) of the Election
he point of exit-entry (1) of Maungdaw
Commission has created a strong resentment
is a jetty where passengers to go out and
and unpleasant atmosphere among the public.
come in by using the waterway of Naf riv-
Could this telegram be issued and things were
er. The Naf River facilitates the journey to go
allowed to drift like this if our beloved Bogyoke
to the northern part of Maungdaw district and
(Gen. Aung San) were alive today?
cross border journey to Bangladesh. Everyday,
13. That in the last war, during the North
hundreds of passengers use the jetty point to go
Arakan campaign the Muslims of Maungdaw,
up to Taungbro of northern Maungdaw (30 miles
Buthidaung and Kyauktaw scarified their lives
journey) and to Teknaf of Bangladesh. The pas-
and properties and fought against the enemy
sengers are almost Rohingya Muslims and small
and gave it a crashing blow, for the attainment
motorized boats are used. As the common border
of freedom of Burma, and their brilliant and he-
between Burma and Bangladesh is controlled by
roic records will, certainly go down to history
Nasaka forces, Maungdaw jetty is also controlled
like other races of Burma. They have had to put
by them.
up with British withdrawals yet they had come
back with government forces and died with and
To make a journey within the township, all Ro-
for them. I wonder if any other people in like
hingyas need special traveling permission. Be-

12 ARAKAN VOLUME 1 ISSUE 6


www.rohingya.org

sides this, unofficial payments are to be made When any minor (boy or girl) accompanies, ex-
to have an undisturbed journey. Nasaka is bent tra charge is to be paid. This is the process to
on extortion from Muslim travelers whether one go to Bangladesh for a week long business trip.
holds legal documents or not. Fictitious reasons Bigger businessmen and sick persons who need
are shown to extort money and it has become specialized treatments mostly use this route.
normal and daily affair. While crossing the Na- But the Nasaka at the jetty while getting exit be-
saka check point at the jetty, all Muslims need fore boarding the boat, makes a lot of problems
to remove head caps as those symbolize Islamic with the passengers to get money extorted. For
identity and piety. Muslim women have to re- the newly issued travel pass from district Immi-
move head covers and to show faces and hair gration, the Nasaka at the jetty asks kyats 1000
while crossing the jetty check point to the boat. which is unauthorized. Furthermore, travel pass
Any kind of violation is liable to punishment by directly made available from the district Immi-
paying extra money to the Nasaka. gration is disputed by the Nasaka at the jetty and
Kyats 2000 is illegally charged against the trav-
All travelers who go to Bangladesh by crossing eler to get through. Sometimes, direct emergen-
Naf River, need special transit pass. The pass is cy pass issuance is done on the basis of critical
issued for one day stay in Bangladesh. This route health or departmental urgency. But unscrupu-
is mostly used by smaller businessmen to go to lous persons responsible at the exit-entry point
and from taking and bringing goods from each in their corrupt practices shamelessly demand
country and sell. They carry Burma products like money from the travelers as if they are autho-
men’s lungyis, slippers, cheaper Chinese home rized by the higher officials. By this way, the Na-
alliances (electrical goods) and seasonal fruits saka at the jetty earn huge money illegally. For
(mangoes). In return, Bangladeshi products like the local population, every illegal act commit-
readymade garments, biscuits, soft drinks, med- ted by any government servant in office, court
icines and cheaper footwear and others manu- or any other place has become normal and unof-
factured goods are brought. By this way, many ficial payments are done without any questions
Muslims and Rakhines sustain their livelihood. being asked.
But bias is clearly seen while issuing transit pass
and allowing the volume of goods to carry. Rakh-
ine traders are mostly women and they get pref- Survival of Rohingyas in Ara-
erences over Muslim traders. Frequently, goods
carried by Muslims are seized and huge money
kan at stake
Kaladan News
is extorted to release the goods. Worse is that
June 19, 2009
if the trader is a Muslim female and when her

M
goods are seized (mostly essential medicines),
aungdaw, Arakan State: The survival of
she has to pay price by staying overnight in the
Rohingyas in Arakan State is at stake as
camp and needs to comply whatever demand is
Burma’s border security force (Nasaka),
made by Nasaka. Poor Muslim women have no
police; Sarapa (Military Intelligence) and army
other choice but to give in to the Nasaka only
have stepped up persecution against the com-
not to incur loss and to keep the business alive.
munity, said a Rohingya leader from Maungdaw
These kind of corrupt practices are perhaps
town on condition of anonymity.
never known by the BIHQ (Border Immigration
Headquarters) in Kyiganbyin, Maungdaw.
The authorities extort money from Rohingya

villagers by arbitrary arrests and torture, confis-
Another type of crossing into Bangladesh is by
cate farmlands from Rohingya farmers and thus
taking a 7 day pass. This pass is obtainable after
push them into joblessness. Besides, Rohingya
one gets the membership of Maungdaw border
villagers are not allowed to move freely to earn
trade. The pass is issued by district Immigration
their livelihood. Rohingyas live in a big jail like
office based in Maungdaw. The intending trav-
a caged bird. Arakan has 17 townships, but Ro-
eler has to report first to the border trade office
hingyas are not allowed to go from one town to
and get enlistment by paying 500 kyats. Accord-
another. Sometimes, Rohingyas are allowed to
ing to the list, district Immigration issues bor-
go to another town but have to get many recom-
der pass book and 500 kyats is charged officially.
mendations (documents) from the authorities.

JUNE 13
News and Analysis of the Arakan Rohingya National Organisation, Arakan ( Burma)

For getting these documents, cousin of Hussain Ahmed. coincide with their Africa Ref-
Rohingyas have to spend mon- Besides, on May 20, a woman ugee Day. Each year, the United
ey and time. Zule Kha wife of Dawla Meah Nations High Commissioner
For instance, Major Kyi Hlaing, from Sarfoddin (Hlapoe khuang) for Refugees (UNHCR) selects
the commander of Nasaka area village in Maungdaw Township a theme and coordinates events
No, 6 along with Sarapa officer committed suicide after quar- across the globe. The 2003
Myint Swe, the second officer relling with her mother-in-law. celebration focused on chil-
of the camp has been extorting So, Major Kyi Hlaing arrested dren. This year’s World Refu-
money from Rohingya villagers her husband and extorted kyat gee Day theme is “Real People,
on false and concocted cases. 600,000, on May 20. Later, on Real
The two officers are notori- June 14, kyat 1,300,000, was also Needs”. For the 42 million
ous. Major Kyi Hlaing had col- extorted from him. One week uprooted people around the
lected a lot of money from Ro- later, the father-in-law of Zule world, a shortage or lack of the
hingya villagers while he was Kha was also arrested and ex- essentials of life - clean water,
the Commander of Maungdaw torted kyat 700,000, said a close food, sanitation, shelter, health
south and Nasaka area No. 9 of relative of Dawla Meah. care and protection from
Buthidaung Township, said a On June 15, a Rohingya villager violence and abuse - means that
schoolteacher from Maungdaw La Gu (45), son of Md. Hashim, every day can be a struggle just
Town. was arrested by the Nasaka of to survive. Of the millions of
Though the Nasaka area No.6 area No. 8 while he was on his people forcibly displaced by
is very close to Nasaka Head- way from west Donsay Para to conflict, persecution and natu-
quarters, Major Kyi Hlaing, has east Donsay Para on a personal ral disasters, every one has a
been committing many crimes matter. He belongs to west Don- story
against the community with- say Para in Maungdaw Town- to tell; they are real people, and
out caring a hoot for the head- ship. The Nasaka officer of they have real needs. Many of
quarters. Major Kyi Hlaing the camp alleged that he had these basic needs are far from
robbed kyat 1.6 million from a Bangladeshi mobile set and being met.
a Rohingya villager Hussain was involved in smuggling to The Rohingya people, an eth-
Ahmed (50), son of Salamat, Bangladesh. However, he was nic and religious minority from
from Naribil (Kyaukpyinseik) released after he paid kyat Western Burma, have been
village of Maungdaw township 150,000, said a friend of La Gu fleeing persecution by Burma’s
on June 16. He has an account who declined to be named. military junta by seeking refuge
in the Kambawza Bank, which “This way, Nasaka extorts in Bangladesh, Malaysia and
is owned by the military gov- money from Rohingya villagers Thailand for decades. The Ro-
ernment. The money was sent illegally. How will they survive hingya, denied Burmese na-
to him by his relative to the in their motherland,” asked a tionality by the ruling State
bank from the Kingdom of Sau- village elder. Peace
di Arabia (KSA). But, Major Kyi and Development Council
Hlaing robbed the money from (SPDC), are a stateless peo-
him by saying that the money World Refugee Day ple with no means of claiming
was not legal, said a close rela- rights or
tive of the victim.
2009 protection. Therein, they face a
Date: 19/06/2009
Moreover, on June 1, Kyat daily tyranny against their abil-

I
400,000 was taken away from ity to move freely around the
n 2000 the United Nations
Hussain Ahmed (25), son of Abul country, as well as discrimina-
General Assembly decided
Kasim, from Sorfodin Bill ( Hl- tion from the authorities on ac-
that as from 2001, 20 June
apoe khuang) village and kyat count of their South Asian
will be
600,000 from Sultan (32), from ethnicity and Muslim religion.
celebrated as World Refugee
Amtoli Para (village) by Major As a consequent of this long
Day to mark the 50th anniver-
Kyi Hlaing on allegations that standing oppression from the
sary of the 1951 Convention
they have Bangladeshi mobile Burmese Junta, many of the
relating to the Status of Refu-
sets. The two victims belong Rohingya have fled as refugees
gees. The Organization of Afri-
to Maungdaw Township, said a into neighboring countries.
can Unity had agreed for it to

14 ARAKAN VOLUME 1 ISSUE 6


www.rohingya.org

Whilst a small number have gone to Thailand and Malaysia, the vast majority have sought
refuge in Bangladesh. The UNHCR claims that the Rohingyas in Bangladesh number 27,000,
the remaining population from the last mass influx of 250,000 in 1992 who are living in two
government-administered camps (Phiri, Pia Prytz, 2008). In reality this figure obscures the
fact that the Rohingya population in Bangladesh also includes at least 100,000 individuals
who are not officially recognised as refugees. These undocumented Rohingyas are forced to
make a living for themselves within local communities or in makeshift camps. In this state of
affairs, we recommended that : (1) SAARC, ASEAN, BIMSTEC may develop a durable
solution for this ethnic group. (2) UNHCR, International community and different civil
society can find equitable regional solution to meet the Rohingya people , those forced to
leave Burma. (3) Pressurize the Burmese government to find an acceptable solution to the on
going Human Rights violation occurring within the country including the 1982 citizenship
law, which renders the Rohingya stateless.

Sender

Safiqul Islam
Admin. Coordinator.

JUNE 15
News and Analysis of the Arakan Rohingya National Organisation, Arakan ( Burma)

Rohingya cemetery seized by TOC in Maungdaw


News - Kaladan Press
TUESDAY, 23 JUNE 2009 15:22

M
aungdaw, Arakan State: The Tactical Operation Commander (TOC) of the Burmese Army in Buthi-
daung Town seized a Rohingya cemetery in Aley Than Kyaw, Maungdaw Township on June 19, vil-
lagers from Aley Than Kyaw said.

On June 19, morning, the TOC officer along with other army officers went to Aley Than Kyaw village in a
convoy of army cars and surveyed the graveyard in Aley Than Kyaw. They ordered nearby villagers not to
bury their dead in the cemetery. The officer also said that if any one does not comply with the order, he
would be punished according to the law, said a village elder on condition of anonymity.

The TOC Commander himself created a boundary around the cemetery with red flags. Villagers were sur-
prised because they were not given advance information. The TOC officer came suddenly and made a
boundary in the Rohingyas’ old cemetery.

In northern Arakan, there are many available places to set up army camps or other establishments. Why do
the authorities want to seize a Muslim cemetery attacking their religion? asked an angry local elder.

A Rohingya elder said, “The SPDC authorities plan to change the demography of northern Arakan and
want to show foreigners that the Rohingyas settled in Arakan not too long ago. So they want to erase traces
of an old cemetery belonging to Muslims.”

Earlier, in Maungdaw and Buthidaung Townships, the army, Nasaka, police and Sarapa also set up camps
and built houses for other purposes after demolishing mosques, Arabic schools and cemeteries though
places were available for construction of buildings for their use, according to a student.

But the army officer did not offer villagers an alternative place to be used as a cemetery to bury the dead.

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16 ARAKAN VOLUME 1 ISSUE 6