Myanmar’s State Sponsored Apartheid Against and Genocide of Rohingyas

Posted on June 1, 2014


This is an excerpt from an opinion piece written by Nicholas Kristoff in the New York Times:

SITTWE, Myanmar — Minura Begum has been in labor for almost 24 hours, and the baby is stuck. Worse, it’s turned around, one tiny foot already emerging into the world in a difficult breech delivery that threatens the lives of mother and child alike.

Twenty-three years old and delivering her first child, Minura desperately needs a doctor. But the Myanmar government has confined her, along with 150,000 others, to a quasi-concentration camp outside town here, and it blocks aid workers from entering to provide medical help. She’s on her own.

Welcome to Myanmar, where tremendous democratic progress is being swamped by crimes against humanity toward the Rohingya, a much-resented Muslim minority in this Buddhist country. Budding democracy seems to aggravate the persecution, for ethnic cleansing of an unpopular minority appears to be a popular vote-getting strategy.

This is my annual “win-a-trip” journey, in which I take a university student on a reporting trip to the developing world. I’m with this year’s winner, Nicole Sganga of Notre Dame University, spotlighting an injustice that some call a genocide.

There are more than one million Rohingya in Rakhine State in the northwest of Myanmar. They are distinct from the local Buddhists both by darker skin and by their Islamic faith. For decades, Myanmar’s military rulers have tried systematically to erase the Rohingya’s existence with oppression, periodic mass expulsions and denials of their identity.

There are no people called Rohingya in Myanmar,” U Win Myaing, a spokesman for Rakhine State, told me. He said that most are simply illegal immigrants from Bangladesh. [Please click here to read the remainder of this article from the New York TImes]

Burmanization and Rohingya Genocide

Rohingyas in Arakan: Ethnic Cleaning and Genocide