Sunday, 11 February 2018

Debate on Rohingya Refugee at the British Parliament

Debate on Rohingya Refugee
in the British Parliament

Dr. Mozammel Haque

Last month in January 2018 there were some important debate, discussions and events on Rohingya in London, the first one was a discussion at the internationally well-known Think-Tank The Chatham House, London, on Rohingya Crisis: Past Present and Future, held on 23 January 2018. The second one was Labour parliamentarian briefing on Rohingya Refugees held at Palace of Westminster, Houses of Parliament on 29 January, 2018 and the third was a debate on Refugees and Human Rights moved by Opposition Labour Party MP Emily Thornberry (Islington South and Finsbury) (Lab)  in the House of Commons on 24 January, 2018.

Debate on Refugees and Human
Rights: Some Excerpts
Emily Thornberry (Islington South and Finsbury) (Lab)
This motion on Refugees and Human Rights was moved by Labour MP Emily Thornberry for Islington South and Finsbury on 24 January 2018. She spoke about the terrible impacts of crisis and conflict in Myanmar. Many Members of the House participated in this debate and expressed their viewpoints on this topic. Many others who have spoken in the debate are united in desiring an end to the death, suffering and sexual violence, and end to the lost generation of refugees unable to leave the camps. 


In the debate following important issues were discussed, such as horrors and hardships that the Rohingya have faced; dangers of the proposed repatriation of Rohingya; 1982 Citizenship Act of Myanmar – the Fundamental problem; ethnic cleansing and textbook crimes of rape and crimes against humanity; Rohingya crisis be raised in the UN Security Council; imposition of sanctions on Myanmar and Rohingya voice must be heard in the debate and at the negotiating table.

Horrors and Hardships
that Rohingya have faced
Speaking about the horrors and hardships that the Rohingya have faced, Emily Thornberry, MP, said: “No one present needs any reminding of the horrors and hardship that the Rohingya have faced ever since the attacks in August. No one needs any telling of the desperate humanitarian situation in the camps on the Bangladesh border. No one needs any warning of the dangers of the proposed repatriation of the Rohingya. What we need to know is what action our Government are actually taking—not just to alleviate the situation, but to resolve it.”

Speaking about Repatriation, she mentioned: “We know that Myanmar simply will not act without external pressure—not on consent for repatriation, and not on the guarantees the Rohingya need regarding their future security, citizenship and economic viability. Will the Minister, finally, use our role as the UN penholder on this issue to submit a Security Council resolution to ensure legally binding guarantees on and international monitoring of all these issues? Until we get those guarantees, will he urge India and Japan to withdraw their offer to fund the planned repatriation?​”

Emily Thornberry MP also said, “As we work for the future protection of the Rohingya, we cannot forget those who have already suffered and died, so let me ask the Minister this as well: is it still the case that only two of the Government’s 70 experts on international sexual violence have so far been deployed in the region, despite the vast scale of crimes that have occurred? Will he make it clear that Myanmar must allow the UN special rapporteur on human rights to carry out her investigation unobstructed, or Myanmar risks once more being a pariah state and being pushed out into the cold?”

Long history of oppression,
Sufferings and persecution
Conservative MP Mrs. Anne Main (St. Albans) as chair of the All-Party Group on Bangladesh observed on the experience of those fleeing persecution in Burma and living in Cox’s Bazaar. Mrs. Anne Main Conservative Member for St. Albans said, “I think the House needs a little history lesson. The first major push against the Rohingya was in 1978. Then the Burma Citizenship Act of 1982 left them out of the list of 135 ethnic minority communities, thus denying them their state—so this has been going on for a very long time. In 1992, their political party was also outlawed. I understand that by that point 47 individuals—four of them women—from the Rohingya community had served as MPs in the Burmese Parliament.”

She also mentioned, “This process has, then, been going on for an extremely long time. Those of us who have visited the sites and camps—right hon. and hon. Members from both sides of the House—have seen the atrocious conditions these people are being forced to live in. We would all accept that a basic human right is the freedom to worship as we see fit. The one thing that joins the Rohingya in solidarity with their brothers and sisters in Bangladesh is their religion. Unfortunately—it is a sad story to tell—the Buddhist community is complicit in and accepting of the driving out of the Muslim population that are the Rohingya.”

Minister for the Middle East, Alistair Burt, mentioned about the sufferings. He said that the International Development Secretary travelled to Cox’s Bazaar. He mentioned, “There she met a young mother—one of more than 650,000 Rohingya refugees who have arrived in Bangladesh since August. Her name is Yasmin. Yasmin had fled Burma with her new-born baby, after her village was burned down and her brother murdered. On their journey, she and her baby were thrown over the side of a smuggler’s boat so that her son’s crying did not alert the Burmese soldiers. They arrived in a giant, crowded camp only for her son to contract cholera. Yasmin is just one of the 65 million people around the world—the right hon. Lady mentioned them—who have been forcibly displaced.”

Anna McMorrin said, “The Bangladesh Welfare Association Cardiff and friends of the Rohingya in Wales are in Cox’s Bazaar refugee camps, unloading trucks full of food parcels, blankets, baby food and medicines. They have encountered devastating scenes of hardship and heartbreak and have heard first-hand accounts that no one should experience: people losing loved ones, suffering violence and experiencing squalor, overcrowding and deprivation. Some 48,000 babies are due to be born in the refugee camps this year. Does the Minister agree.”

Ethnic cleansing
Conservative MP Michelle Donelan for Chipperham said, “Today, I will concentrate on the situation that has been endured for five harrowing months by the Rohingya people in Burma.

She mentioned, “I can only begin to imagine what life is like for those who have been forced to flee their home with nothing and for those who have been left behind to continue living out the nightmare in Burma. Ten thousand people have been confirmed dead, but the actual figure could be immeasurably higher. Some 830,000 refugees are estimated to have crossed over to Bangladesh, which is 11 times the number of people in my constituency. Those refugees must be allowed to return to Burma, but only when it is safe, which is far from the current situation.”

Talking about the Rohingya crisis in Myanmar, Minister Alistair Burt said, “We remain deeply concerned by the Rohingya crisis, where people are still crossing the border every day with stories of unimaginable trauma. This is a major humanitarian crisis created by Burma’s military. There has been ethnic cleansing and those responsible must be held accountable.

Repatriation
Labour MP for Tooting, Rosena Allin-Khan, said, “Forcibly repatriating the Rohingya to Myanmar would be tantamount to sending them back to their deaths. Who will ensure their protection—the very military who killed their babies, tortured their menfolk, and who have systematically raped the women? The military who forced parents to make the decision whether to go and rescue their children from burning fires or—the ones who are still alive—to run and flee? We cannot once again turn a blind eye to human suffering—to people living in an apartheid state where citizenship is unattainable and where religious persecution has long been the status quo.”

“The challenge to the international community and to us is clear: how do we create the conditions, not just for the Rohingya, but for all stateless and persecuted minorities, to rebuild their homes without fear of persecution? This country’s response to that challenge goes to the essence of who we are as a people. I believe—I know—that British people are kind, courageous, brave and compassionate. Our Government should be acting to live up to that idea of the very best of Britain, but too often they have failed in the courage of their political convictions. Too often they have turned a blind eye,” she mentioned.

Labour MP Rosena Allin-Khan said, “Creating the conditions for refugees to return to their homes will have been achieved only once the fear they have in their hearts has gone. We can really lead the way through fierce, active diplomacy, and our Government must use all their leverage to bring about peaceful resolutions.”

“I hope that hon. Members across the House will join me in calling on the Government to take a much more active role in bringing the international community together, to provide those across the world fleeing war, facing danger and suffering in squalid camps not fit for the inhabitation of insects with the dignity and humanity they deserve,” she emphasized.

The proposed repatriation scheme has now been suspended, as announced on Monday. Conservative MP Mrs. Anne Main welcomed the suspension of the proposed repatriation scheme. She said, “I am pleased that repatriation is no longer being considered, because the memorandum of understanding did not mention the word “Rohingya”.”


Labour MP for St. Helen South and Whiston, Ms Marie Rimmer, said, “The Rohingya face forced repatriation and a return to state-sponsored violence in Myanmar. Thank goodness that a pause has been put on that—for now.”

No Quick Return
Speaking about the agreement between the Government of Bangladesh and Burma on repatriation, Minister for Middle East Alistair Burt said, “The honest truth is that people are having to recognise that we are talking about a long-term, protracted refugee stay in Bangladesh. There is no quick return. We cannot ask people to return to a situation after they were expelled with maximum force, violence and horror. Although the agreement between the Governments of Myanmar and Bangladesh to return people over a two-year period is a welcome sign of intent, it cannot possibly have any serious basis unless we know that people are going to be safe. People cannot be returned on any other basis. The honest truth is that we have to be prepared for this to take time. We are pushing not only for the work that we do in Cox’s Bazaar itself, but for a role for the international community in monitoring any return, with the UNHCR taking the lead.​”

Importance of Rohingya voice
being heard at the debate
Conservative MP Mrs. Anne Main said, “How can there be no voice for the Rohingya at the negotiating table? It is totally unacceptable that the oppressors, who are land-mining the border and driving people out with machine guns, and who have denied these people their rights since 1982, should be divvying up the role of the Rohingya and their future. It is no surprise that there have been marches and resistance on the camps to any talk of repatriation. How can anyone accept being asked to go back to a country where their existence has been denied since 1982? That needs to be dealt with as much as anything.”

Mrs. Anne Main pleaded that somehow the Rohingya be given a voice. She said, “I understand that Ata Ullah is not an acceptable voice, as he is leading a resistance group, but there must be someone who can speak up for the Rohingya.” “We must keep driving forward to find someone who will sit at the table and say what the Rohingya want to happen, otherwise the rioting and unrest in the camps will continue. The worst thing we can do is insist that people go back to a country where they are denied even their existence.”

International Development Committee Report
Stephen Twigg (Liverpool West Derby) (Labour Co-op) mentioned about the Report. He said, As the International Development Committee report, which we published last week, pointed out, the Rohingya crisis has tested these commitments to destruction. I echo what others have said today about the Rohingya crisis. One lesson we must surely learn, which is relevant to the excellent motion before us, is that prevention is always best. As the hon. Lady reminded us, this did not come from nowhere: we have known for years about the threat to the Rohingya people. In recent years, there have been early warnings from Human Rights Watch and the Holocaust museum in Washington. I also echo what others have said about repatriation. It cannot be on the agenda in the foreseeable future, and I hope that the Minister will reaffirm that in his closing remarks.”

Concluding Remarks
The Minister for Asia and Pacific said, “Throughout, we have heard moving testimony about the situation facing many hundreds of thousands of Rohingya refugees fleeing violence in Burma in recent months. Since 28 December, the UK’s pledge of some £59 million has helped to fund an emergency medical team of 40 doctors, nurses and midwives, paramedics and fire-fighters, who have been deployed to the frontline of the refugee camps in Cox’s Bazaar in Bangladesh, to help to combat the diphtheria outbreak.


“In my role as FCO Minister for Asia, I remain persistent in our lobbying the Government of Burma to allow the Rohingya back to their homeland with sufficient guarantees on security and, importantly, on citizenship that they will be able to rebuild their lives. As I have said before, that can begin only when conditions allow for a safe, voluntary and dignified return,” the Minister for Asia said.

Referring to the question of return raised by Members for Tooting (Dr Allin-Khan) and for Liverpool, West Derby (Stephen Twigg), Minister for Asia said, “If the returns are to be genuinely voluntary, there must a consultative process to establish the refugees’ intentions and concerns. We are encouraging the UNHCR to develop a more systematic process for consultation with refugees, and we will call on Governments to incorporate the refugees’ views in repatriation processes as they develop. I assure the House that I am also working within the international community to develop a coherent strategy that will begin to hold to account those who have committed what independent observers regard as crimes against humanity.”

Labour Party Briefing on Rohingya
In the UK Parliament
Then on Monday, 29th of January, 2018, Labour Parliamentarians invited press at the Palace of Westminster, Houses of Parliament to brief the position of Labour party and parliamentarians on the Rohingya situations both in Cox’s Bazaar Bangladesh and in Rakhine state Myanmar. They said: “We would like to invite you to come and hear about our work and what we want the British Government to do to resolve this crisis.”

The Labour Parliamentarians who were present and talked about the situations and their works were: Helen Goodman MP, Shadow FCO Minister with responsibility for East Asia and Myanmar, who has been leading for Her Majesty’s Opposition on debates in Parliament.  Stephen Twigg MP, Labour Chair of the International Development Committee, which published a fantastic report last week that highlights the Government’s slow response and   Rushanara Ali MP, who has been championing the Rohingya’s cause in Parliament and who sent a letter, signed by over 150 MPs, to the Foreign Secretary in September calling for government action.

Helen Goodman MP
The first speaker was Helen Goodman who gave a brief activity which the Labour Parliamentarians are doing. She mentioned: “Ever since the Rohingya people started to cross the border in August and the first urgent question was raised by Yasmin Qureishi on the 5th of September 2017 and then Rushanara Ali coordinated a letter which 150 Members of Parliament signed to the Foreign Secretary and then she initiated backbench business community to debate which is a debate in the main chamber on the 17th of October 2017. Some Labour MPs went to Cox’s Bazaar and one of those was Dr. Roberta Blackman-Woods, Labour MP and she initiated another debate at Westminster Hall on 28th of November 2017 and then as well as raising at Foreign Office questions Emily Thornberry spoke in the opposition debate last Wednesday, the 24th of January 2018. So you can see all the time we have been pushing pushing and pushing to get the government to be more energetic in their policy.”

Summary of briefings
During the parliamentary briefing, Labour parliamentarians touched on the issues of return to Rakhine state, repatriation of Rohingyas, oppression, appalling evidence of crimes of rape and sexual violence.

Parliamentarian Stephen Twigg mentioned about the All Party Parliamentary Select Committee Report into the International Development into Bangladesh and Burma of which he was the chairman and the report was published two weeks ago. He also mentioned we made it very clear that the conditions are not in place for any repatriation. He also said any return should certainly be voluntary. He emphasized Rohingya voice should be heard. Stephen MP mentioned the oppression of the Rohingya goes back decades. There is a big failure of policy. He also mentioned about the appalling evidence of crimes of rape and sexual violence against women and children.


Parliamentarian Helen Goodman mentioned about the debate in the main chambers by Emily Thornberry on 24 January 2018. She described the points Labour Party agreed with the government and the points on which Labour party wants strong response. Speaking about the five point plan about which the Labour is in agreement is: an end to violence; guarantee humanitarian aid access; and any return must be safe, voluntary and dignified; implement the recommendations of the Kofi Annan Commission and have access for the UN Human Rights Commission for Fact-finding mission.

As regards the points of difference, Goodman MP mentioned, the first point of difference is protecting the reputation of Aung San Suu Kyi for which Rohingya has to pay the price which is not acceptable. The second point of difference relates to terrible gender-based violence. The third point of difference is on repatriation. No repatriation without the involvement of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees. Fourth point of difference is on sanctions. Fifth point of difference is: “we think the government which is penholder in the UN should take the initiative on this.”

Parliamentarian Rushanara mentioned about her visit and the conditions of refugees. She said, ‘absolutely horrified, essentially like prison camps; apartheid.’ She also mentioned about the response of the international community: “the international community was very slow to catch off at what’s been happening in spite of the warnings.”

Labour MPs Press release 5.02.18
 On 5th of February 2018, Labour parliamentarians issued a press release under the following caption:

Labour MPs calls for further action to be taken to help Rohingya Muslims

The press release runs as follows: 
“Labour affirms Government action in providing £59m, commends the aid money sent and the Government’s 5 Point Plan. But they said “you must will the means as well as the ends”. The Government’s initial response was slow, they have 71 experts in helping people who’ve suffered sexual violence but have only sent 2. They have taken no action to ensure that the UN monitors any repatriation of the Rohingya back to Myanmar which must not be undertaken without this. The government must also re-impose sanctions on the military. 

The Labour MPs stated that they will continue to use all available fora to press the government on all these issues. 

The press release also mentioned the actions to be taken in the future, in pressing the UK Government to do more to alleviate the suffering of the Rohingya. Besides others, The MPs listed a number of ways Labour have pressed the Government on doing more for the Rohingya so far and added:

“The 5 points are: the cessation of violence by the Burmese security forces; humanitarian access to be guaranteed in Burma; any returns of refugees to be in a voluntary, safe and dignified manner; full implementation of the Kofi Annan Advisory Commission’s recommendations; and, above all, full access for, and cooperation with, the UN Human Rights Council’s Fact-Finding Mission.”


Sunday, 4 February 2018

Labour Press Briefing on Rohingya at Parliament

Labour Parliamentarians Briefing on
Rohingya Refugees at Parliament

Dr. Mozammel Haque

Labour Parliamentarians invited press at the Palace of Westminster, Houses of Parliament, on Monday, 29 January 2018, to brief the position of Labour party and parliamentarians on the Rohingya situations both in Cox’s Bazaar Bangladesh and in Rakhine state Myanmar. They said: “We would like to invite you to come and hear about our work and what we want the British Government to do to resolve this crisis.”

They mentioned: “Since large-scale, state-approved violence re-erupted against the Rohingya people last August, an estimated 688,000 more refugees have fled across the border into Bangladesh, around half of them children, now living in desperate squalor and poverty in hugely over-crowded camps in the Cox’s Bazar district.

“This is one of the worst humanitarian disasters we have seen in a long time, and the Labour Party considers the campaign by the Myanmar military against the Rohingya Muslims to be ethnic cleansing. Labour MPs have been extremely active; taking the initiative in parliament to raise the issues and pressing the British Government to ensure that the Rohingya can get as much aid as possible and to do all they can to get Myanmar authorities to stop their ethnic cleansing campaign,” they mentioned.

The Labour Parliamentarians who were present and talked about the situations and their works were: Helen Goodman MP, Shadow FCO Minister with responsibility for East Asia and Myanmar, who has been leading for Her Majesty’s Opposition on debates in Parliament.  Stephen Twigg MP, Labour Chair of the International Development Committee, which published a fantastic report last week that highlights the Government’s slow response and   Rushanara Ali MP, who has been championing the Rohingya’s cause in Parliament and who sent a letter, signed by over 150 MPs, to the Foreign Secretary in September calling for government action.

Helen Goodman MP
First of all The first speaker was Helen Goodman who at the beginning, gave a brief activities which the Labour Parliamentarians are doing. She mentioned: “Ever since the Rohingya people started to cross the border in August and the first urgent question was raised by Yasmin Qureishi on the 5th of September 2017 and then Roshanara Ali coordinated a letter which 150 Members of Parliament signed to the Foreign Secretary and then she initiated backbench business community to debate which is a debate in the main chamber on the 17th of October 2017. Some Labour MPs went to Cox’s Bazaar and one of those was Dr. Roberta Blackman-Woods, Labour MP and she initiated another debate at Westminster Hall on 28th of November 2017 and then as well as raising at Foreign Office questions Emily Thornberry spoke in the opposition debate last Wednesday, the 24th of January 2018. So you can see all the time we have been pushing pushing and pushing to get the government to be more energetic in their policy.”


After this introductory few words, MP Goodman  requested Stephen Twigg, MP, to talk about the Select Committee Report and said that she would come back to describe “where we agree with the government and where we would like stronger response where Labour position is different from the government.”

Summary of briefings
During the parliamentary briefing, Labour parliamentarians touched on the issues of return to Rakhine state, repatriation of Rohingyas, oppression, appalling evidence of crimes of rape and sexual violence.

Parliamentarian Stephen Twigg mentioned about the All Party Parliamentary Select Committee Report into the International Development into Bangladesh and Burma of which he was the chairman and the report was published two weeks ago. He also mentioned we made it very clear that the conditions are not in place for any repatriation. He also said any return should certainly be voluntary. He emphasized Rohingya voice should be heard. Stephen MP mentioned the oppression of the Rohingya goes back decades. There is a big failure of policy. He also mentioned about the appalling evidence of crimes of rape and sexual violence against women and children.

Parliamentarian Helen Goodman mentioned about the debate in the main chambers by Emily Thornberry on 24 January 2018. She described the points Labour Party agreed with the government and the points on which Labour party wants strong response. Speaking about the five point plan about which the Labour is in agreement is: an end to violence; guarantee humanitarian aid access; and any return must be safe, voluntary and dignified; implement the recommendations of the Kofi Annan Commission and have access for the UN Human Rights Commission for Fact-finding mission.

As regards the points of difference, Goodman MP mentioned, the first point of difference is protecting the reputation of Aung San Suu Kyi for which Rohingya has to pay the price which is not acceptable. The second point of difference relates to terrible gender-based violence. The third point of difference is repatriation. No repatriation without the involvement of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees. Fourth point of difference is on sanctions. Fifth point of difference is: “we think the government which is penholder in the UN should take the initiative on this.”

Parliamentarian Roshanara mentioned about her visit and the conditions of refugees. She said, ‘absolutely horrified, essentially like prison camps; apartheid.’ She also mentioned about the response of the international community: “the international community was very slow to catch off at what’s been happening in spite of the warnings.”

Goodman mentioned about the Emily Thornberry’s debate on 24th of January, 2018. I thought it is important to add some of the excerpts from that debate at the end of this report.

Stephen Twigg, MP
Labour MP Stephen Twigg echoed what his colleague parliamentarian Helen Goodman has said. He mentioned, “I think number of Labour colleagues including those Helen referred to have taken the lead on this both on the front bench and on the back bench. My is slightly different because I chair across party I did when we fought in the autumn to have an enquiry into the work of International Development was doing in Bangladesh and Burma but to start by looking specifically at the Rohingya crisis. We published our report two weeks ago.”

He said, “We set a number of things. Our report publication coincided with suggestions. He mentioned about repatriation. He said, “that the government of Burma and Bangladesh have agreed around repatriation of some of the Rohingya refugees; we made very very clear that we do not believe that the conditions are in place for any repatriation that even be considered to be seen massive changing in Burma itself that any return should certainly be voluntary. Connected to that and something that came across the debate Emily Thornberry led last week is that very often in debates on the Rohingya the voices of the Rohingya themselves are not heard.”

He also mentioned about the voices of the Rohingya themselves are not heard. He said, “We think one of the priorities and the UK can play a positive role on this is amongst those who are living refugees in Cox’s Bazaar and elsewhere. Let us identify leaders that can speak for their communities so that the Rohingya voice is heard and that is relevant to today’s discussion; because of course we do have Rohingya community here in the UK who live as refugees and number of our colleagues, for example,  some of the Bradford MPs where there is a very significant Rohingya community have made the point that we need to listen to the Rohingya Diaspora in our own country and we certainly gather evidence from British Rohingya as an important part of our enquiry that we did that.”

Parliamentarian Twigg then talked about the history of the Rohingya people. He mentioned, “We looked at some of the history because Rohingya is really important to make the point that this is not something that had happened unexpectedly. There were many early warnings that something like this could happened; the oppression of the Rohingya goes back decades; this is not something that simply emerged in recent years. And I think there is a big failure of policy more often done to try to prevent this from happening.”

He also mentioned the other aspects which they have focussed in the Report. He said, “We focussed a lot in our Report is the appalling evidence of crimes of rape and sexual violence against women and children in particular and they need from the UK office to do a lot more to collect evidence and also to give support to those who have suffered appalling violence including sexual violence. That is a very brief summary of quite a long report probably the key headlines happened.”

Helen Goodman, MP
As said earlier, parliamentarian Helen Goodman started to describe at which points they agreed and at which points they need stronger response. She said, “The House has put 59 million pounds aid we support that and we really pleased that they have done that. And they have a five point plan and that is: an end to violence; guarantee humanitarian aid access; and any return must be safe, voluntary and dignified; implement the recommendations of the Kofi Annan Commission and have access for the UN Human Rights Commission for Fact-finding mission. So we agreed with all these things but we felt as well as willing ends we have to the means and this is where we would like a stronger response because we now got 680,000 refugees; many many people have suffered horrendous crimes.”

Parliamentarian Goodman after pointing out the point where she agreed and then she mentioned the points of difference. She mentioned: “Many people have suffered horrendous crimes and the scale of problems just emerged. So our first point of difference is that we think the government was too slow. This is being, as Stephen has described, a long running problem so they should have been more alert when it really blew up in August-September, 2017. We think they should have acknowledged the ethnic cleansing much faster; it took us in November to get the Minister to say that and we feel that there have been too interested in protecting the reputation of Aung San Suu Kyi. They have been very anxious to protect her position within Burma; that is important; of course that is important. But the suffering by the Rohingya people cannot be a price who are paying for critical development in Burma; that’s not acceptable. That is our first point of difference.”

Parliamentarian Goodman then mentioned the second point of difference which is related to terrible gender based violence. She mentioned: “Our second point of difference relates to the terrible gender-based violence. That the British government has 71 people trained and able to do counselling and support people who suffered sex crimes, rape and that so far they only sent two out of those 71 people. Well they cannot be greater need for that support than they need in Cox’s Bazaar at the moment. We just cannot understand why they only sent two of the 71 people.”

Goodman MP also mentioned her third point of difference on the issue of repatriation. She said, “Thirdly we believe there should be no repatriation without the involvement of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees. We think the idea we rely on the Red Cross or some of the voluntary organisation, however good they are, it’s not the same of having the UN; because the UN has a legal responsibility and legal powers and legal duties that nobody else has. We want the UN to be there to see the situation is in Rakhine state and for that to be no question of people going back without that UN presence being permanent; it’s not possible; it’s clearly not possible.”

Then Parliamentarian Goodman mentioned another point of difference on sanctions. She explained, “We have difference with on sanctions. Now you will probably remember we had full investment trade sanction between 1996 and 2012; Last September the Prime Minister announced the re-imposition of arms sanction which is good; but we don’t think these sanctions covered broad enough spread the relationship that we have with Myanmar. The sanctions are come to an end in March. So we would like to have statement now from the government that they will roll these sanctions over in April unless we have succeeded in getting UN in and proved the conditions are safe. My personal view is that incredibly unlikely. I don’t think that thing is going to happen. I think that sanctions should be rolled over but you know; if there is a miracle.”

Parliamentarian Goodman  then maintained, “But now we would like these sanctions extended to two areas: one is to all the economic sectors controlled by the military of the Myanmar. In Myanmar the economy got two parts; it has got big big parts of industrial corporations controlled by the military and they don’t just control the army; they control weapons manufacturing; they control some of the mineral extractions and we would like to see sanctions extended to that part of the economy. And we would also like to see sanctions extended to individuals who we know have been responsible for the abuses and we now in the situations where we are even behind the Americans because the Americans have used the law to put sanctions on the man called Maung Maung Soe who ran the campaign in the Rakhine state.”

Talking about taking initiative to raise the Rohingya issue in the UN, MP Goodman said, “We think the government which is the penholder in the UN should take the initiative on this. Now we know that there would be pushed back from China and Russia. We are not naïve about this; but we think the government should take the initiative. We also think that we should use the opportunity which we have to collaborate with our EU colleagues because we could have EU sanctions. We could do that even before we get agreement in the UN.”

“For Labour, this crisis is a priority which is why Emily spoke and I can give you what she said last Wednesday,” mentioned Goodman MP and said, “Boris Johnson went to Myanmar and all we saw he was doing; that’s not acceptable; because this is a very big crisis; and we need the top of the government to be putting it weight behind pressing for resolutions.”

Roshanara Ali MP
Then Parliamentarian Roshanara Ali spoke on the Rohingya situation. She visited Rakhine state in 2013 after the violence. Roshanara MP said, When I went to Burma with refugees international Burma campaign; she was absolutely horrified; situation was essentially like prison camps; apartheid. You can’t get access to help; you cannot move around; and the daily battle of survival was horrific; humanitarian agency in the north were not allowed to go as much and the NGOs were really concerned because they had very limited access for medical staff; if there is any emergency they phoned life-threatening situation particularly for women during child birth with unprecedented.”

Speaking about the response of the international community, parliamentarian Roshanara said, “The international community being very slow to catch off at what’s been happening despite the warnings and there are still number of countries selling arms not just usual suspects I understand countries like Pakistan; so we do need much more assertive action and leadership in government both at UN level. So along side with the debates in parliament which is very well attended; numbers of colleagues have visited Rakhine as well as delegations.”

She also mentioned about the Holocaust Memorial day during the Second World War and “There have been subsequent genocide UN has stated, as Helen has already said, this is a textbook of crime against humanity,” she mentioned.

Speaking about sending back Rohingyas to Myanmar, parliamentarian Roshanara said, “Without security sending people back is equivalent back to the perpetrated army.” She said that the idea of repatriation should be under the international protection. That’s the first step.”

Questions & Answers Session
In the Questions & Answers Session, I raised some of the questions such as the 1982 Citizenship Act which makes the Rohingya community stateless and the Myanmar authority does not treat them as Rohingyas. Both the parliamentarians Stephen and Helen agreed and said, “Exactly; that’s the fundamental. Absolutely; that’s the fundamental problem. That’s why we want to see the amendments that Kofi Annan made - everyone has the right of citizenship share.”

I also raised the question about the role of international community to raise the Rohingya crisis in the UN Security Council.  Replying to that, Parliamentarian Goodman said, “We want the government to take the initiative. When we ask them they said to us China and Russia will say that is probably the realistic assessment. We could go for a resolution in the UN but my point is we can also work through the EU; we don’t need to get involved in worrying about China and Russia; should we think the EU.  We could make strong sanctions.”

Debate on Refugees and Human Rights
on 24 January 2018: Some Excerpts
Emily Thornberry (Islington South and Finsbury) (Lab)
Emily Thornberry said: “No one present needs any reminding of the horrors and hardship that the Rohingya have faced ever since the attacks in August. No one needs any telling of the desperate humanitarian situation in the camps on the Bangladesh border. No one needs any warning of the dangers of the proposed repatriation of the Rohingya. What we need to know is what action our Government are actually taking—not just to alleviate the situation, but to resolve it.”

Emily Thornberry MP also mentioned: “We know that Myanmar simply will not act without external pressure—not on consent for repatriation, and not on the guarantees the Rohingya need regarding their future security, citizenship and economic viability. Will the Minister, finally, use our role as the UN penholder on this issue to submit a Security Council resolution to ensure legally binding guarantees on and international monitoring of all these issues? Until we get those guarantees, will he urge India and Japan to withdraw their offer to fund the planned repatriation?​”

Emily Thornberry MP also said, “As we work for the future protection of the Rohingya, we cannot forget those who have already suffered and died, so let me ask the Minister this as well: is it still the case that only two of the Government’s 70 experts on international sexual violence have so far been deployed in the region, despite the vast scale of crimes that have occurred? Will he make it clear that Myanmar must allow the UN special rapporteur on human rights to carry out her investigation unobstructed, or Myanmar risks once more being a pariah state and being pushed out into the cold?



Thursday, 1 February 2018

Lord Ahmed Reports the horrific conditions of Rohingyas

Lord Ahmed narrates the Horrific Situation 
of Rohingya at the Leadership Awards Event

Dr. Mozammel Haque

Lord Ahmed narrated the horrific conditions of the Rohingyas in his keynote speech at the Annual Community Leadership Awards & Gala Dinner, organised by Community Leadership Foundation in Partnership with SOAS University of London, supported by Connecting Communities which was held at The Royal Regency, Manor Park, on Tuesday 12th December 2017. This Community Leadership Awards were given to those Muslims who have been doing good works in the community also acknowledging the services and contributions.

Lord Ahmed described his visit to Bangladesh, to Cox’s Bazaar just on the line of the border where the river is. He mentioned, “I see those one thousand children; that ten thousand children; have come across this river to save their lives. Children don’t leave their parents or their homes if they were not afraid of their lives. I saw an old woman probably the same age of my mother who had broken arms, not but actually broken into two pieces; bruises are not fake. I saw and I met with a eleven or twelve year old girl; it is not only flesh, she will be okay; but when I realise on the side of her leg, the bones were coming out of her and when I asked her, she said that the Burmese had thrown her on the fire; because the Burmese army had burnt their house and threw them on the fire and also killed her parents.”

Dr. Ahmad al-Dubayan, Director General of the Islamic Cultural Centre & London Central Mosque, was given an Award for his excellent leadership role in the British Muslim community and the role of the Islamic Cultural Centre, London. The Award was presented by H.E. Saud Al-Hamdan, Head of the Islamic Affairs of the Saudi Embassy in London.

Barrister Abid Hussain finally announced: “Our final penultimate speaker is Lord Nazir Ahmed of Rotherham. He chooses to draw the lines what he feels what he thinks right; and he speaks for justice and against injustice. Unfortunately last year he had to fly out and I had to take this opportunity to ask what it is meant to give him the award that you should have last year for riding support for locally nationally and internationally.”

While giving the Award to Lord Ahmad, Barrister Abid said, “This is from SOAS University Professor Ornament Tea Award giving to Lord Ahmad for what he should have and now round of applause for our keynote speaker Lord Nazir Ahmad.”

Keynote Address at Leadership
Award Event Lord Nazir Ahmed
While delivering his keynote address, Lord Nazir Ahmed of Rotherham, Peer of the House of Lords of the British Parliament, mentioned, “I had the honour of hosting this event for many years in the House of Lords. Community Awards SOAS and the community had been training the Awards and I had been proud of hosting this because I think the community needs to be recognised. You know in the United Kingdom and here in Europe and the United Kingdom our community has made a huge contribution whether it is in the field of economic development political development social and communities we have done lots of works.”


Lord Ahmed said, “The point that I wanted to make that the contributions I remind people that after the Second World War when they destroyed this country and the Bangladeshi community in East London and Afghanis, Pakistanis, Turkish and all the diasporas who are here tonight we are proud that our forefathers, our elders, made a contribution in the society and made this country the richest country today.”

“I am reminding when some people were asking us we should issue some sort of Fatwa against those people who believe in Caliphate.  We also related to the verses in the Holy Bible and I said that no religion no religion actually promote violence; even I say; we used to believe the Buddhism; the Buddhist religion is the most peaceful religion on earth and get what you see in Burma you would be horrified to see nearly a million Muslims have been driven out of their homes. Ten thousands who have been killed; thousands and thousands of women who have been raped,” mentioned Lord Ahmed in his keynote speech.

Lord Ahmed also described his visit to Bangladesh, to Cox’s Bazaar just on the line of the border where the river is. He mentioned, “I see those one thousand children; that ten thousand children; have come across this river to save their lives. Children don’t leave their parents or their homes if they were not afraid of their lives. I saw an old woman probably the same age of my mother who had broken arms, not but actually broken into two pieces; bruises are not fake. I saw and I met with a eleven or twelve year old girl; it is not only flesh, she will be okay; but when I realise on the side of her leg, the bones were coming out of her and when I asked her, she said that the Burmese had thrown her on the fire; because the Burmese army had burnt their house and threw them on the fire and also killed her parents.”


Lord Ahmed also narrated the horrific events that were happened to the Rohingya refugees. He mentioned, “When I was distributing food, I asked some young women: how many they have seen people have been murdered. Three women, barrister shahab was there; three women, young women, 18, 20 years old they stood up and said my husband was killed. There were many; they said, their mothers and sisters have been raped. So what are the points I am making even if you have the most peaceful religion on earth; those who use and abuse nationalism with religion; they cause disaster for all of us; whether Christians - Donald Trump is a Christian but do you believe what he does and what he practices.”

Going back to the topic of Khalifat, Lord Ahmed again mentioned, “Both Lord Qurban said and I tried to give them proper kind of answer because so many had spoken about these young Muslims or these fanatic who wanted to live in a Khilafat and they wanted to have a khilafah like in Turkey, the Ottomans and I told them that there is no such thing like khilafah after the four Caliphs – Sayyidana Abu Bakr, Sayyidana Omar, Sayyidana Osman and Sayyidana Ali. There were the Ottoman Empire, Mughal Empire, there were North African Empire. I told them that the Prophet peace be upon him sent his companions to Abyssinia and then one hundred joined them in Abyssinia who lived under a Christian ruler and they were allowed to practice their religion very fairly like the European countries and the United States live peacefully amongst other communities. And we have no problem whatsoever.”

“Therefore those fanatics, those extremists from all sides, whether they are from my religion or from any other religion, create hatred. They wanted to create hatred; they wanted to create wall, they wanted to create distance, divisions; so we want to stand together and be proud of the contributions that our communities make on daily basis in East London, in Greater London, in Yorkshire, in Scotland; all of you who have come here,” said Lord Ahmed.

Then Lord Ahmed expressed his thanks to Barrister Abid, his team and SOAS. He said, “You have attended all the awards in the House of Lords. It is a very small place and there was a smaller sort of celebrations. This is a huge gathering of the community and I am very proud to be with you tonight. Thank you Barrister Saheb; thank you. But I want to say how proud I am all of you for the contributions that you make at every level whether in this country, whether in economy, or in political life; social life; there are many doctors in the National Health Service; NHS would not be as good as it is today without the works of Asians and Muslim doctors today. So all of you together we make contributions and thank you for recognising the great works there are and please continuing doing hard work and we wanted to come back next year even celebrate many more of you.”




Wednesday, 25 October 2017

Genocide in Rakhine state - Rohingya Crisis

Genocide in Rakhine State
Rohingya Crisis Could destabilise the Entire
Region – says United Nations Secretary General

Dr. Mozammel Haque

Rohingya crisis could destabilise the entire region – says United Nations Secretary General on the basis of the reports, information received from the different agencies of the United Nations. Though the situation in Myanmar and the condition of the Rohingyas deserve to be taken attention but the UN Security Council has failed to speak out. It is reported that two human rights groups are accusing the UN Security Council of ignoring the “ethnic cleansing” taking place on a large scale against Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar. Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International representatives said at a joint press conference at UN headquarters that the UN’s most powerful body has failed to speak out and immediately demand an end to the violence. About 370,000 Rohingyas have fled to Bangladesh since Aug. 25 and thousands are arriving every day. Louis Charbonneau, the UN director for Human Rights Watch, said, “This is an international peace and security crisis” and there is no excuse for the Security Council “sitting on its hands.”

The United Nations Secretary General, António Guterres, said the government clearance operations in Rakhine “risked” ethnic cleansing. A Change.org petition to revoke Aung San Suu Kyi’s Nobel peace prize had reached 390,000 signatures by Friday.

Genocide and Ethnic Cleansing
The attacks on Rohingya villages on 25 August, 2017 appear to many to have been a systematic effort to drive them out. UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres has described it as ethnic cleansing. The UN human rights chief has described the systematic attacks against the Rohingya minority by the security forces of Myanmar as a “textbook example of ethnic cleansing.” Amnesty International regional Director James Gomez accused Suu Kyi of “a mix of untruths and victim-blaming.” “There is overwhelming evidence that security forces are engaged in a campaign of ethnic cleansing,” Gomez said. The top UN human rights official, Zeid Ra'ad al-Hussein, said. "The situation seems a textbook example of ethnic cleansing."


Heads of States of different countries also said there is genocide in Rakhine state. French President Emmanuel Macron said attacks on Myanmar’s Rohingya minority amounted to “genocide.” Macron said in an interview with the French TV channel TMC. Macron’s use of the word “genocide” marks his strongest verbal attack yet on the military drive against the Rohingya. France will work with other members of the UN Security Council for a condemnation of “this genocide which is unfolding, this ethnic cleansing,” The Turkish President, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said in a statement: “You watched the situation that Myanmar and Muslims are in. You saw how villages have been burned … Humanity remained silent to the massacre in Myanmar.” Turkish President Erdoğan has accused Myanmar of “genocide” against the Rohingya Muslim minority, who have fled in the tens of thousands across the border into Bangladesh to escape ethnic cleansing. There is a genocide there,” Erdoğan said in a speech in Istanbul during the Islamic Eid al-Adha feast. “Those who close their eyes to this genocide perpetuated under the cover of democracy are its collaborators.”

His Holiness Pope Francis said that he is following the “sad news of the religious persecution of Rohingya community… he asked that the members of the ethnic group be given full rights.”

Bangladesh's Foreign Minister said “genocide" is being waged in the country's violence-hit Rakhine state. "The international community is saying it is genocide. We also say it is a genocide," AH Mahmood Ali told reporters. “The international community is saying it is a genocide. We also say it is a genocide," AH Mahmood Ali told reporters.

UN Secretary General
The UN Secretary-General, António Guterres, is pushing hard for concerted action and warns of the risk of ethnic cleansing (several Nobel peace prize laureates say that point) has already been reached. But Myanmar has said openly that it is working with China and Russia to prevent a Security Council rebuke. The UN Secretary General, António Guterres, warned that the violence in the country verged on ethnic cleansing and could destabilise the wider region.

United Nations Report
United Nations Report released this year detailed what happened to those that stayed. The report described mass killings and gang rapes by the armed forces in actions that “very likely” amounted to crimes against humanity. A security crackdown launched last October in Maungdaw led to the U.N. report on human rights violations by security forces that indicated crimes against humanity. Al-Jazeera reported, “The U.N. documented mass gang-rape, killings -- including infants and young children -- brutal beatings, and disappearances. Rohingya representatives have said approximately 400 people have been slain during the crackdown.”

While writing petitions to stop the genocide by Hussein Mohamed and Najma Maxamed of London UK, said, “Upon the documentations of the crime against humanity being conducted in Myanmar by the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) in a ‘flash report’ which was released on 3 February 2017, no serious action seems to have been taken to end this genocide since then. This is regardless of the fact that another recent report made on the 30th August 2017 seems to have found that indeed the violence being shown towards the Rohingya population in Rakhine State throughout this protracted crackdown could “very likely” amount to crimes against humanity.”

“According to OHCHR more than half of the women its human rights team interviewed reported having suffered rape or other forms of sexual violence. Many other interviewees reported witnessing killings, including of family members and having family who were missing.”

United Nations Human Rights
The top UN human rights official has urged Myanmar to end "brutal security operation" against Rohingyas in Rakhine state, calling it "a textbook example of ethnic cleansing". Zeid Ra'ad al-Hussein, addressing the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva said, "I call on the government to end its current cruel military operation, with accountability for all violations that have occurred, and to reverse the pattern of severe and widespread discrimination against the Rohingya population." Zeid also said. "The situation seems a textbook example of ethnic cleansing."

UNHCR
“A spokeswoman for the UN high commissioner for refugees, Vivian Tan, told Agence France-Presse, “The numbers are so alarming. It really means we have to step up our response and that the situation in Myanmar has to be addressed urgently.”

It is clear by now that there have been serious human rights laws both local and international that have been violated by the Myanmar government through its security forces. It is also clear that these violations which have resulted in approximately more than tens of thousands of people murdered from a specific community alongside the displacement of even more people certainly amounts to genocide as opposed to just being termed as being “very likely” to amount to crimes against humanity.

OIC (Organization of Islamic Cooperation)
The world’s largest Muslim body, Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), condemns abuses of Rohingya in Myanmar. It was urging Myanmar to allow in UN monitors so they can investigate what it alleges is systematic brutality against the Rohingya ethnic minority. “The Organization of Islamic Cooperation issued its statement Tuesday after an emergency meeting on the sidelines of a technology conference in Astana, Kazakhstan.”

Heads of States
Besides the United Nations and its different organs and agencies, the Organization of the Islamic Cooperation (OIC) and the heads of states of different countries such as the United States, France, Iran and Saudi Arabia, were concerned and wanted the United Nations to take immediate action.

United States of America
US President Donald Trump wants the United Nations Security Council to take “strong and swift action” to end the violence, Vice President Mike Pence said. Diplomats say the Security Council could consider adopting a formal statement if the situation does not improve, but China and Russia are unlikely to agree to stronger action that would require the adoption of a resolution they could veto, it is reported in Arab News.

The US has dispatched an envoy to Myanmar to express its “grave concern” with the violence in Rakhine. Patrick Murphy, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Southeast Asia, will meet with government leaders and travel to the state capital of Rakhine but not the conflict zone further north, the official said.

France
French President Emmanuel Macron said attacks on Myanmar’s Rohingya minority amounted to “genocide.” France will work with other members of the UN Security Council for a condemnation of “this genocide which is unfolding, this ethnic cleansing,” Macron said in an interview with the French TV channel TMC. Macron’s use of the word “genocide” marks his strongest verbal attack yet on the military drive against the Rohingya. “We must condemn the ethnic purification which is under way and act,” Macron said. “Asking for the violence to end, asking for humanitarian access... progressively enables an escalation” under UN auspices, Macron said. “When the UN issues a condemnation, there are consequences which can provide a framework for intervention under the UN,” Macron said.

Saudi Arabia
Saudi Arabia said the issue of the Muslim minority in Myanmar is a top concern for the Kingdom and calls on the international community to intensify its efforts to stop the apparently systematic ethnic cleaning campaign against the Rohingya Muslims.
It also stressed the need to intervene to find a humanitarian solution to protect the Rohingya minority from acts of violence and collective punishment they experience.
This came in the Kingdom’s speech before the 36th Session of the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) during the interactive dialogue with the independent internationally mandated fact-finding mission on Myanmar.

The Kingdom’s speech was delivered by Saudi Ambassador at the UN in Geneva Abdul Aziz bin Mohammed Al-Wasel. Al-Wasel strongly condemned the recent violence against the Rohingya Muslim minority. He stressed the Kingdom’s position that the UNHRC should address these violations and alleviate the suffering of the Rohingya Muslims and compel Myanmar to respect its international obligations to promote and protect human rights without discrimination based on race, sex or religion. “Myanmar is asked to cooperate fully with the fact-finding mission to look at human rights violations there and to promote tolerance and peaceful coexistence in all sectors of the state,” Al-Wasel said.

Iran
Iran’s Supreme Leader has strongly condemned the killing of Muslims in Myanmar by the government. It is reported in Arab News, “Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said the killing of Rohingya Muslims is a political disaster for Myanmar because it is being carried out by a government led by Nobel Peace Prize winner Aung San Suu Kyi, whom he called a “brutal woman.” He urged Muslim countries to take practical steps to stop the violence and said they should “increase political, economic and commercial pressures on the government of Myanmar.”

Human Rights Groups
The Human Rights Groups are very much critical of the Myanmar’s brutalities on Rohingyas. “The government has to stop this offensive,” said Phil Robertson, deputy Asia director for Human Rights Watch. “It has to allow humanitarian assistance and let journalists into this area. We have to actually see what’s happened because quite clearly human rights violations have taken place.”

An Amnesty International report this month, based on extensive interviews with Rohingya as well as analysis of satellite imagery, claimed that actions by Myanmar’s military may constitute crimes against humanity.

Nobel Prize Laureate
More than a dozen fellow Nobel laureates have criticised Aung San Suu Kyi, Myanmar’s de facto leader, for a bloody military crackdown on minority Rohingya people, warning of a tragedy “amounting to ethnic cleansing and crimes against humanity”. It is reported in The Guardian, “The open letter to the UN Security Council from a group of 23 activists, including Archbishop Desmond Tutu and Malala Yousafzai, warned that the army offensive had killed of hundreds of people, including children, and left women raped, houses burned and many civilians arbitrarily arrested. It was delivered as Bangladesh announced around 50,000 Rohingya Muslims have fled the violence across its border.”

“Access for humanitarian aid organisations has been almost completely denied, creating an appalling humanitarian crisis in an area already extremely poor,” reads the letter, whose signatories include current and former political and business leaders and campaigners such as Yousafzai, the youngest winner of the Nobel Peace Prize. “Some international experts have warned of the potential for genocide. It has all the hallmarks of recent past tragedies – Rwanda, Darfur, Bosnia, Kosovo,” the letter reads. “If we fail to take action, people may starve to death if they are not killed with bullets.”

But the signatories to the letter said the army’s response had been “grossly disproportionate”. “It would be one thing to round up suspects, interrogate them and put them on trial,” the letter said. “It is quite another to unleash helicopter gunships on thousands of ordinary civilians and to rape women and throw babies into a fire.”

Archbishop Desmond Tutu
The Nobel laureate Desmond Tutu joined the growing list of voices calling on Aung San Suu Kyi to do more to protect Myanmar’s persecuted Muslim minority. He issued heartfelt letter to fellow peace prize winner calling for her to speak up for Rohingya in Myanmar. He has called on Aung San Suu Kyi to end military-led operations against Myanmar’s Rohingya minority. It is reported in The Guardian, “The 85-year old archbishop said the “unfolding horror” and “ethnic cleansing” in the country’s Rahkine region had forced him to speak out against the woman he admired and considered “a dearly beloved sister”.  “I am now elderly, decrepit and formally retired, but breaking my vow to remain silent on public affairs out of profound sadness,” he wrote in a letter posted on social media. “For years I had a photograph of you on my desk to remind me of the injustice and sacrifice you endured out of your love and commitment for Myanmar’s people. You symbolised righteousness.”

“Your emergence into public life allayed our concerns about violence being perpetrated against members of the Rohingya. But what some have called ‘ethnic cleansing’ and others ‘a slow genocide’ has persisted – and recently accelerated. “It is incongruous for a symbol of righteousness to lead such a country,” said the anti-apartheid activist. “If the political price of your ascension to the highest office in Myanmar is your silence, the price is surely too steep,” reported by Naaman Zhou and Michael Safi in The Guardian.

Tutu used his open letter to urge Aung San Suu Kyi to “As we witness the unfolding horror we pray for you to be courageous and resilient again,” he said. “We pray for you to speak out for justice, human rights and the unity of your people. We pray for you to intervene in the escalating crisis and guide your people back towards the path of righteousness again.


Malala
“Every time I see the news, my heart breaks at the suffering of the Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar,” Yousafzai, who survived being shot in the head by the Taliban, said on Twitter. “Over the last several years I have repeatedly condemned this tragic and shameful treatment. I am still waiting for my fellow Nobel laureate Aung San Suu Kyi to do the same.” The Malaysian foreign minister, Anifah Aman, said: “Very frankly, I am dissatisfied with Aung San Suu Kyi,” he told Agence France-Presse. “She stood up for the principles of human rights. Now it seems she is doing nothing.”

Peaceful protest and demonstration
Besides the reaction of the UN agencies, Human Rights groups and the Presidents of USA, France, Iran, Saudi Arabia and Turkey against the Myanmar’s brutalities towards the Rohingya Muslims; there were peaceful demonstrations, protests and petitions in different countries.

In Oxford, Oxford Information Centre organized a peaceful demonstration in support of Myanmar Rohingya people. Sheikh Ramzy said: "We calling on our government to save the Burma's Rohingya community from further persecution, ethnic cleansing and genocide, and exodus. UN described Rohingya Muslim as the most 'persecuted minority on earth', Myanmar's Rohingya Muslim community have been victims of mass murder - including of women and children - rape and torcher. Burma's de facto political leader, the Nobel laureate Aung Sun Suu Kyi, who herself was feted in our Parliament for upholding human rights, now dehumanizes the community by denying them their right to be citizens of their own land.

In South Asia, Massive protests are reported in many countries, Bangladesh, Pakistan, India among others against the persecution of Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar (September 2017). There were protesters in Kolkata, India, burning an image of Aung San Suu Kyi. This time around violence seems to have been triggered due to the attack by militants (Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army) on police and military posts. United Nations has said that the extent of violence indicates that it is crime against humanity.

Tens of thousands of people rallied in the capital of Russia’s mainly Muslim republic of Chechnya in support of the Rohingya. The Chechen leader, Ramzan Kadyrov, told the crowd in Grozny that the world was watching in silence while the Rohinghya were “torn to pieces, burnt on fires and drowned”. 

UN Aid Agencies
In spite of all these protests, petitions and reactions to the Myanmar’s brutalities towards Rohingya Muslims, Myanmar government has not stopped its ethnic cleansing. Rather Myanmar has blocked all United Nations aid agencies from delivering vital supplies of food, water and medicine to thousands of desperate civilians at the centre of a bloody military campaign against the country’s Muslim Rohingya minority, the Guardian has learned. The office of the UN resident coordinator in Myanmar said deliveries had been suspended “because the security situation and government field-visit restrictions rendered us unable to distribute assistance”. “The UN is in close contact with authorities to ensure that humanitarian operations can resume as soon as possible,” the office said.

It is also reported, “The UN World Food Programme said it also had to suspend distributions to other parts of the state, leaving 250,000 people without regular access to food. Sixteen major non-governmental organisations including Oxfam and Save the Children have also complained that the government has restricted access to the conflict area. Humanitarian organisations are “deeply concerned about the fate of thousands of people affected by the ongoing violence” in northern Rakhine, said Pierre Peron, a spokesman for the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs in Myanmar.”

Humanitarian Aid.
However, on the other hand, Muslim countries have taken decision to send humanitarian aid to the worst affected Rohingyas in Rakhine state. Saudi Arabia’s King Salman has ordered the payment of $15 million aid for the Rohingya refugees fleeing from Myanmar as a result of genocide and torture. The announcement came in a statement to the Saudi Press Agency (SPA) following a meeting of the Saudi Cabinet, which was briefed by Dr. Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al-Rabiah, general supervisor of Riyadh-based King Salman Center for Relief and Humanitarian Aid on the situation in Myanmar with the Muslim minority Rohingya refugees that have been forced to flee.

Indonesia has despatched from Jakarta two Hercules aircraft carrying humanitarian aid for the Rohingya community in Myanmar’s Rakhine state. “The two planes carry tents, water tanks, blankets, family kits, five tons of instant food and nearly a ton of medicines,” said Sutopo Purwo Nugroho, a spokesman for the National Disaster Mitigation Agency. The aid will be handed to Myanmar’s government in Yangon for distribution. Nugroho said Indonesia previously sent eight sortie missions to help the relief effort in Bangladesh.

Former Indonesian Foreign Minister Marty Natalegawa told Arab News: “The developments in Myanmar, the plight of the Rohingya, have moved the conscience of nations and people throughout the world.” The crisis constitutes a litmus test for the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) to present itself as part of the solution, said Natalegawa, who dealt with the issue during his 2009-2014 tenure, and visited Rakhine in 2013.

Turkey has called upon the Bangladesh government to open its doors to Rohingya Muslims fleeing violence in Myanmar’s western Rakhine state. In terms of humanitarian aid in the world, Turkey ranks 2nd after the United States with $6  billion and $6.3 billion respectively, Cavusoglu added. Dr. Altay Atli, a research associate specializing on the Asia-Pacific region at Sabanci University's Istanbul Policy Center, said, Turkey’s leading role in the Rohingya issue has two components: Humanitarian aid, including an open check offered to Bangladesh to cover the costs of the refugees, and diplomatic initiatives, such as taking the issue to the UN and mobilizing the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC). “These two components, implemented together, can be effective,” he said.

Britain’s International Development Secretary, Priti Patel in a statement released on 8 September said, “The appalling violence in Rakhine must stop now. Britain urgently calls upon the security forces to de-escalate the situation in Rakhine and the Government of Burma to allow immediate and full humanitarian access and support for the people and communities affected.”

Britain is immediately releasing a further £5 million from existing funds to provide additional critical life-saving assistance such as food, shelter, water and sanitation to those who are fleeing the violence. In addition, Britain is ready to support the recommendations of the Kofi Annan led Rakhine Advisory Commission to assist the long-term development of all people in Rakhine state, but right now the immediate action is for the security forces to end the violence and the Government of Burma to allow humanitarian access.

Conclusion
The Rohingyas are a minority of about a million people who, despite living in the country for generations, are treated as illegal immigrants and denied citizenship. They have been persecuted for years by the government and nationalist Buddhists.

Fact Finding Mission
Under the present circumstances, four immediate actions should be taken before the Myanmar government became completely successful in ethnic cleansing of the Rohingyas. Firstly, there is a repeated demand for a UN-mandated fact-finding mission established this year.  The Myanmar government is also asked to allow the fact-finding mission to visit affected areas to carry out its assigned role.

Impose sanctions
Secondly, sanctions should be imposed immediately on Myanmar’s military. Pressure also grew on Myanmar as rights group urged world leaders to impose sanctions on its military.

Humanitarian aid
Thirdly, Humanitarian aid should be allowed to enter and reach the worst affected Rohingyas immediately.

Return of Refugees to Rakhine
Fourthly, Return of Rohingya refugees plan should be made immediately. Repatriation of the refugees who went to Bangladesh and other neighbouring countries to their home in Rakhine state.