Tuesday, 8 April 2014

More Army Battalions in Maungdaw

Maungdaw, Arakan State: The Burmese government setup more Army Battalions in Maungdaw since the authority started the population of census in Maungdaw, Anwer, a politician from Maungdaw.
The Army Battalions setup in the areas of Maungdaw are;- Waythali  Natala village (3 miles), Myothugyi village, Myoma Kayoungdan High School compound, Myinn Hlut in Maungdaw south and Nga Kurah in Maungdaw north, the politician said.

“Each of the battalion station has 300-400 army personnel and they were well equipped.”
The Army Battalions are suddenly setup in Maungdaw and the local peoples – especially Rohingya community – become surprised and worried for more Human Rights violation in the areas, said Halim, a Human Rights Watchdog from Maungdaw.

The Battalions setup is good for Maungdaw local peoples, but the Rohingya will suffer more while the Army move from one place to another. The villagers must be faced to supply ration for them and females will face more difficult like other areas of Burma, raped by army personnel, Halim said.

“Human Rights violations will increase more while the Army moving for their routine of their operations.”

The Battalions is not for only census process security, but also the government may keep this battalion for long till government satisfied the areas safe, Halim said.

In Maungdaw district, Army personnel from Myoma Khayoungdan  High School compound, arrested 4 – Rakhine with firearms from Ward number 4, Maungdaw on April 3 at midnight, but the Rakhine were released on April 6 without any trial, said Bulu, a Teacher from Maungdaw.

Similarly, Army personnel from border police force area number 5, arrested 6 Rakhine with firearms in Mayu Mountain range on April 6 morning, when local firewood collectors saw 25 Rakhines with arms in the mountain. But, the arrested Rakhine were released after Phurwut Change village recommend that the Rakhines are from his village who went to mountain for searching frogs, Bulu said.

The reinforcement of Army are stationed in Maungdaw is for Rohingya community, not for Rakhine who are holding arms. The Army will harass the Rohingya community with allegation of Rohingya insurgents enter into Maungdaw, Bulu more added.

On the other hand, the Army station in Nyoung Chaung village, under Buthidaung, gang raped a 40 year Rohingya female for not getting her husband when the army personnel went to his home on April 6, at midnight, said Hasu, a trader from Buthidaung.

Truck crashes a Rohingya’s cow in Maungdaw north

Maungdaw, Arakan State: A truck drove and owned by Rakhine crashed a cow owned by Rohingya on April 6, at about 4:00pm, at   Thay Chaung Village under Maungdaw north while crossing the road, said Hakim from the locality.
“The legs of the cow were broken, but the owner got life of the cow. However, the truck driver Maung Maung( Rakhine), son of Maung Chey from Powet Chaung Natala village of Maungdaw Township ran away from the scene after the incident.”

A villager from the locality who saw the accident, said. “It is a deliberate attack to the cow as there is no car and any jam or roadblock on the road to occur such accident.” 

The cow owner is Sidique Ahmed (65), son of Abdu Shukur, hailed from Thay Chaung ( Balu Khali) village under the Pawet Chaung village tract of Maungdaw Township, said a relative of the cow owner. 

Regarding the matter, the owner accompanied by some leaders from the village went to the local concerned police camp and appraised the event, but till now, there is no action against the culprit, the relative more added.

Rakhine local people or authorities always want to disturb to Rohingya community to flee Arakan, said a local farmer on condition of anonymity. 

Rakhine community wants to create problems, apparently relation to anger over the census methodology. The Rakhines and the government oppose to call and identify themselves as “Rohingya“ to Muslim group who are living in the areas and refer them as “Bengalis” which mean the Muslim group are illegal immigrants from Bangladesh, said a Rohingya politician from Maungdaw.

Enumerators or census collectors went to some households in Maungdaw Township, but they did not register any household that identified as Rohingyas, he added.

A villager said, “On April 2, some census officials came to our village, we, the community leaders told them, if you don’t allow us to fill in Rohingya, we will not join the census, which mean we are boycotted the census process.  But, they did not allow us to fill Rohingya in the race column.”

Many Rakhines fear, Government’s recognition of the Rohingya population would precede an eventual shift in Arakan State’s demographics that would threaten, said a businessman from Buthidaung 

Thursday, 13 February 2014

Nameless Graves Mark the End of Tortured Existence for Rohingya in Thailand


PHUKET: Five boatpeople, victims of Thailand's traffickers, were buried in a Songkhla village yesterday while others continue to suffer disease and cramped conditions in secret jungle ''animal pens'' or official confinement.
Local Muslim authorities say that deaths from diseases and severe conditions are likely to continue until Thailand's government recognises that thousands of Rohingya, being smuggled through Thailand, should be accorded basic human rights.
''The men we buried today were aged 16 to 40,'' said Isma-Aen Mat-Adam, of the Rohingya Help Network in Thailand. ''All of them died after being 'rescued' from the secret jungle traffickers' camps. Hospitals could not save them
''These deaths show how bad the conditions are in the jungle camps and in Thailand's detention centres.''
The men had been confined by Thai authorities and by traffickers in a serial rights abuse since January last year.
In the hospital, where doctors and nurses tried to save the men from the ravages caused by constant cramped confinement at the hands of Thai officials and traffickers, the nameless dead men were recorded on official documents as ''Rohingya One,'' ''Rohingya Two,'' ''Rohingya Three'' . . .
The first man died on January 30. Another perished on February 1. The third death followed on February 2. Two more came on February 4 . . . it's likely their family and friends are among more than 700 Rohingya still being held in southern Thailand.
The boatpeople were ''rescued'' by Thai authorities late last month from two secret jungle camps, little more than animal pens with earthen floors and no room for the captives to stretch or stand.
Twenty-four men who were unable to walk were left after the ''rescue'' to fend for themselves in the jungle at one corral site, said the Chairman of the Muslim Committee of Songkhla province, Sakkeeya Binsala.
For many, it was the second time in the traffickers' camps, having been previously ''rescued'' in January last year then confined for all the intervening months in cramped Immigration or police cells before being ''deported'' into the arms of waiting traffickers.
And around they go again, seeking sanctuary in Malaysia . . . but finding only a kind of hell in Thailand.
Wrapped in white shrouds and buried by local residents, the five fresh anonymous graves at the village near Sadao now bear silent witness to the fate of the stateless in Thailand.

A final resting place ends long and cruel treatment for five Rohingya

Deputy Judge extorts money through law in Maungdaw

Maungdaw, Arakan State: The deputy Judge is extorting money from Rohingya who faced trial in Maungdaw Judge Court, said Halim, Human Rights Watchdog from Maungdaw.

U Than Htun Oo, the deputy judge of Maungdaw judge court used his power in trials to extort money from Rohingya who case was hearing under his supervise, starting 500,000 kyat to 1000,000 kyat depended on the person, the watchdog said.
U Than Htun Oo used his power when a case was able to bill or dismiss – release temporarily (by a court of law) and unconditionally release- but he used the law to extort money from person, saying he will send him to jail and sends his assistant to negotiate for demand money to release, said Anno, a victim of the Judge.
The judge also issued trial date very near which harmed the people didn’t able to prepare for next date trial and asking money  for day long time,  Anno, more said.
Recently, the judge extorted 1000,000 kyat from Kiasar, a youth from Shwe Zarr village tract for quarrel case –Act 324, said a relative of Kiasar.
The judge is taking advantage recent situation  where the Law and order was not favor  to Rohingya community in Maungdaw and no one take any action against him for his misusing of law and power, said an elder from Maungdaw.
The Maungdaw high level officers – U Aung Myint Soe, the district admin officer and U Kyi San, the Township admin officer- are also using their power to harass and ill treatment the Rohingya community under their post, the elder added.


Authority searching mobile phones in Maungdaw

Maungdaw, Arakan State: Maungdaw high level officers ordered to village admin officers to list all mobile phones which was issued by Myanmar Post and Telegram department (MPT), said Haroon, a student from Maungdaw.

The ordered was issued after visiting of Arakan State chief minister visited Maungdaw to see the ground situation of Du Chee Ya tan ( Kila Dong) village , Maungdaw south, Haroon more added.
The GSM mobile SIM cards were issued by the authority to the people and now the authority collecting the list of mobile in the villages – only Rohingya villages- to harass the Rohingya and the gateway to extort money with false allegation, said Hamid, a school teacher from Maungdaw.
The authority will impose or tract Rohingya who are using the MPT mobiles to control the flow of information through the mobile network –like recent violent attacked on Kila Dong Rohingya villagers by security forces and Mogh from Kharay mine Natala village, Hamid more added.
International community pressured the Burmese government with the information which the villagers informed through their mobile network to media and other concern rights groups. So, the Maungdaw authority are trying to control Rohingya MPT mobile holders not to send information to media and others.
“It may be imposed the Rohingya not to use the mobiles or to harass or to extort money from with this allegation,” said Halim, the Human Rights Watchdog from Maungdaw.
The MPT mobiles are sold by authority which was legal to use by the people, but the authority is now trying to control the use of mobile within the Rohingya community which will cut the Rohingya from the world, the watchdog said.

Saturday, 8 February 2014

Eyewitness accounts point to a government cover up of a massacre in Myanmar

Eyewitness accounts point to a government cover up of a
 massacre in Myanmar
Rohingya News Agency‏ ‏‎–(Anadolu Agency): has heard testimonies from eyewitnesses to a massacre that allegedly occurred last month in the village of Du Chee Yar Tan, in Myanmar’s Rakhine State.
The claims made by the interviewees, whose identities cannot be revealed for their own safety, appear to implicate the Myanmar authorities in a cover-up of mass killings; allegations that, if verified, may hasten calls for an international inquiry into the incident.
Last month a group of local Buddhists, backed by police, rampaged through the village killing at least 40 people, according to a United Nations statement and human rights organisations.
A radically different version of events has been put forward by the Myanmar government, who deny that any Rohingya Muslims were killed and insist that the only victim was an ethnically Rakhine policeman.
AA has spoken with several eyewitnesses whose accounts may help to shed light on what actually took place last month. The area where the massacre purportedly occurred is off limits to international journalists, and only those with special permission can access it.
According to AA sources, the violence was precipitated by the discovery of the dead bodies of eight Rohingya Muslims that had gone missing attempting to flee the country; it was known locally that they had been detained by a Rakhine village administrator. 
A worker saw the dead bodies in the garden of the village administrator and returned to his village, Du Chee Yar Tan, to raise the alarm.
One villager told AA that on the very same night, on the 13 January, the police came to the village and began to search some of the properties.
The commotion caused by the police searching the homes made some Rohingya villagers believe it was burglars and they came out of their homes to challenge them, one villager told us. 
The police left the village because of the opposition they faced.
Sources allege that the police returned at 2:00am with a mob of 400 Buddhist Rakhines.
“As soon as they entered the village they began firing. Seven people were shot straight away, everybody ran away,” said one witness. “It was like it was raining bullets,” he added.
Villagers also claim that their relatives were arrested and they still do not know about their whereabouts. 
People from neighboring villagers claim that they saw trucks laden with Rohingya prisoners being driven away. These putative detainees are still missing.
In total, sources claim five police trucks full of people left the village and only one truck returned.
Many of the Rohingya managed to escape to neighboring villages or hid in other locations; some women returned to the village the next day.
“We say shallow graves had freshly been dug. We could smell the stench of decomposing bodies and there were flies everywhere,” one woman told AA.
The women went back to a neighboring village upon seeing the shallow graves. However, they were asked to return to Du Chee Yar Tan by authorities preceding an EU delegation visit. When they returned they claim the bodies had been removed.
Villagers also claim that the police were the ones that started the fire on 28 January. They said that they saw the police pouring petrol on the roofs of the houses.
"They came on motorbikes. They first knocked some doors and when no one opened I saw them pour petrol on the roofs,” claimed a villager.
This account was referenced by Myanmar Muslim MP Shwe Maung in an interview with the Democratic Voice of Burma (Myanmar), where he accused the authorities of starting the fire. 
According to the MP he received a letter describing his interview as, “defaming the state and Myanmar Police Force,” along with, “instigating conflicts”.
AA has exclusive photographs from the village that show the destruction of homes, passed to us by local villagers.
After the EU delegation left the village the women were told to leave Du Chee Yar Tan because there would be an ‘investigation’.
One village member told AA that even as the EU delegation was visiting the village the police were hiding a body that had turned up in a nearby creek.
Several accounts heard by an AA correspondent also point to some female prisoners being held in the nearby Rakhine villages of Kau Chaung and Mayrawadi.
The Rohingya Muslıms, who the UN say are among the most oppressed peoples in the world, reside mainly in the Western Myanmar state of Rakhine.
Attacks against the minority in 2012 involved, according to Human Rights Watch, ethnic cleansing and crimes against humanity perpetrated with the aid of state forces.
The Myanmar government continue to accuse media organisations of fabricating news and deny that any sort of massacre took place.