Who are the Rohingya Muslims and what's going on in Burma?

Who are the Rohingya Muslims and what's going on in Burma?

About 2,70,000 Rohingya Muslims are estimated to have entered Bangladesh in recent weeks as Myanmar security troops carry out an "anti-insurgency" operation in the Rakhine State.

There is a desperate need for food, water and health services for new arrivals in Cox's Bazaar, the United Nations added. "They were scrutinized on the facts of their citizenship status, and the period they lived in Myanmar", he said.

The violence and exodus began on 25 August when Rohingya insurgents attacked Myanmar police and paramilitary posts in what they said was an effort to protect their ethnic minority from persecution by the security forces in the majority Buddhist country.

Two top officials of foreign and home ministries told Prothom Alo that the government has urged the worldwide community in the letters to create a "safe zone" inside Myanmar's Rakhine state so that the Rohingya people are not repressed. "She also expressed that Turkey which has faced the challenges of terrorism and has to cope with the PKK (Kurdistan Workers' Party) will understand the challenge that Myanmar has to face".

Rights monitors and fleeing Rohingya say the army and Rakhine vigilantes have unleashed a campaign of arson aimed at driving out the Muslim population.

The organization said the mines "have seriously injured at least three civilians, including two children, and reportedly killed one man in the past week", citing eyewitnesses and analysis by its weapons experts.

"We have taken shelter at a school as we have no relatives here", he said.

"There is now an urgent need for 60,000 new shelters, as well as food, clean water and health services, including specialist mental health services and support for survivors of sexual violence".

While social media reaction to violence in the Rakhine state of Myanmar has overwhelmingly been in favour of Rohingya refugees, comments by alleged Myanmar nationals have generally been in opposition to claims of abuse by the Myanmar military.

"The deadly silence of the worldwide community who claim to be defending human rights is unbelievable", asserted the cleric, "they say that they are condemning the crimes, but will the issue get solved by just paying a lip service of condemnation?"

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Prior to that, the Muslims were frequent targets of Buddhist mobs.

In Indonesia, hundreds of protesters gathered near the famous Borobudur temple in Central Java, and hundreds more outside the Myanmar Embassy in Jakarta. They urged to try Myanmar leaders in European Courts of human rights over slaughtering innocent Muslims in Myanmar.

But while Myanmar's democratic transition and growth trajectory provide lessons and pathways for other economies in the narrow tunnels of poverty and dictatorship, perceptions matter.

At a meeting at President Htin Kyaw's residence on Thursday attended by high-ranking government and army officials, discussions touched on building more fencing at the Myanmar-Bangladesh border.

Myanmar's Nobel Peace Prize victor Aung San Suu Kyi, who spent years under house arrest when Myanmar was a military dictatorship, is now the country's de facto leader with the title of State Counsellor.

Various world leaders have urged Ms Suu Kyi, a Nobel Peace laureate who spent years under house arrest for her pro-democracy activism, to speak out on behalf of the Rohingya. They are often described as "the world's most persecuted minority".

In the two weeks since, the Myanmar military's response has been brutal, widespread and indiscriminate. Earlier this week, Bangladesh lodged a protest after it said Myanmar had laid landmines near the border between the two countries.

He said Germany supports the recommendations of the Rakhine Advisory Commission under the leadership of former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan as a good starting point and urged Aung San Suu Kyi and the Myanmar government to implement the recommendations "directly and comprehensively".

Myanmar does not recognise the 1.1 million Rohingya as citizens, labelling them illegal immigrants from Bangladesh.