Peace loving refugees, allow us to stay: Rohingyas to Supreme Court

Cheryl Sanders
September 25, 2017

Filippo Grandi said the worldwide community must step up aid to Bangladesh if the south Asian nation is to be able to help the 430,000 people who have recently fled the violence.

"It will be a very important exercise to have clarity on the numbers, to organise the assistance better and eventually to identify the refugees when they go back", the UNHCR chief said.

Hate speech and misinformation on social media have amplified ethnic tensions in Myanmar's Rakhine state, a U.S. official said Friday, urging the country's "better angels" to show compassion for Rohingya Muslims who are fleeing violence in droves.

Last week Hindus from the area told AFP that militants swept into their villages on August 25 with sticks and knives, attacking people who stood in their way, killing many and taking others into the forest. The mass exodus of Rohingyas from the Rakhine state of Myanmar to escape alleged persecution has put a massive strain on neighbouring Bangladesh.

Rohingya Muslims are not illegal immigrants but refugees who have escaped violence in Myanmar and they needed protection under global agreements, a Rohingya petitioner told the Supreme Court on Friday.

Amnesty International has assessed three new videos taken inside Rakhine State as recently as Friday afternoon showing large plumes of smoke rising from Rohingya villages, one of which was already deserted, as well as satellite imagery with smoke visible over burnt-out structures.

Diplomats say the Security Council could consider adopting a formal statement if the situation does not improve, but China and Russian Federation are unlikely to agree to stronger action that would require the adoption of a resolution they could veto.

Seeking to get legal clearance for the deportation plan, the home ministry told the Supreme Court this week it would confidentially provide it with intelligence information showing Rohingya links with Pakistan-based militants.

Over the past month, thousands of Rohingya have fled from the brutal army-led crackdown across the border in Rakhine.

Amnesty says its sources in Rakhine claim the fires were set by the Myanmar security forces and vigilante mobs.

The latest influx of refugees have put huge pressure on Bangladesh, stretching the limits of global aid agencies.

The journalists warned that while the worldwide community, including the United States and European Union, have imposed an arms embargo against the government in Myanmar, Israel is "the main arm supplier of Myanmar and continues to arm Burma military amid ongoing violence against Rohingya Muslims".

The United Nations has called for "massive worldwide assistance" to aid with the ongoing Rohingya influx in Bangladesh.

"Almost all the people I know have arrived in Bangladesh", said Yusuf Majihi, a Rohingya leader at a camp at Balukhali, near Cox's Bazar.

Other reports by iNewsToday