Myanmar misleads int’l community with fabricated info: Bangladesh
Financial Express October 30, 2019
Bangladesh has reacted sharply on Myanmar’s persistent campaign to mislead the international community with fabricated information, misrepresentation of facts, unsubstantiated claims and undue accusations.
Dhaka made it clear that Nay Pyi Taw is doing so to avoid its obligations for the sustained repatriation and reintegration of the forcibly displaced Rohingya in safety and dignity, reports UNB.
“Myanmar must act decisively to address the real causes that are preventing the displaced Rohingya from going back voluntarily,” said the Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ External Publicity Wing on Wednesday.
“It’s a matter of utter dismay to witness persistent campaign on the part of the Government of Myanmar to mislead the international community,” it said.
Bangladesh recently noticed yet another round of such attempts by Myanmar Union Minister for International Cooperation U Kyaw Tin.
He resorted to misrepresentation of the whole issue as well as laying unjustified blames on Bangladesh in his effort to refute the well-founded remarks by Bangladesh Foreign Minister on Rohingya crisis at the Preparatory Ministerial Meeting of the 18th Summit of the Non-Aligned Movement on Oct 23 in Baku, Azerbaijan.
In his statement, Tin accused Bangladesh of mischaracterising Rohingya crisis as “religious persecution”, “driving an ethnic group out of the country”, “ethnic cleansing” or “genocide”, among others. In reality, such observations are made by international community based on documented evidence, which bear the unmistakable signs of forcible deportation of a community from its ancestral homeland in Rakhine under atrocity crimes on civilian population.
The nature and extent of atrocities in 2017 surpassed all previous records.
Myanmar Minister claimed that the crisis is confined only in the northern strip of Rakhine State and people of different faiths are living in harmony in the remaining areas across the country.
“But it’s a well-known fact that continued disenfranchisement of country’s ethnic minorities by successive Governments of Myanmar and suppression of their rights and justified demands by force rendered Myanmar as one of the world’s largest homes to Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) and a leading source of cross-border displacements,” said the Ministry of Foreign Affairs here.
A substantial number of forcibly displaced Myanmar nationals of varied ethnic and religious backgrounds are in temporary shelter in different countries for decades and only a few could return and reintegrate in their homeland.
Myanmar always portrays Rohingya as ‘illegal-migrants’ from Bangladesh during the colonial era.
Now they have come up with a new claim that there was a massive influx of Bangladeshis to Myanmar during the War of Liberation in 1971.
Bangladesh says all these claims are baseless.
According to historians, Rohingya is a distinct ethnic community evolved over the centuries through mingling of migrated people of various races and cultures from different parts of the world with the local people in Rakhine.
As such, on two previous occasions Myanmar recognised displaced Rohingya in Bangladesh as their lawful residents and repatriated them.
After the recent influx, Myanmar signed bilateral instruments with Bangladesh identifying them as “Myanmar residents”.
As far as the nationality of Rohingya is concerned, there cannot be any scope for confusion. Attempts to create controversy over their identity at this stage clearly indicate that Myanmar still pursues the policy of exclusion and marginalisation of its ethnic minorities.
Rohingya crisis has been presented as a matter of inter-communal tension and development shortfall in Rakhine State during the speech.
In reality, systematic discrimination and persecutions by the state are the root causes of this protracted crisis, as recognised by Kofi Annan Commission and the international community in general.
The statement blamed ARSA as usual for initiating the crisis and preventing the displaced Rohingya from returning in order to advance their political agenda.
“Myanmar should understand that so called ARSA attack on August 25, 2017 can never justify highly disproportionate military response, widespread human rights abuses, and atrocity crimes on a particular ethnic community,” said the Ministry of Foreign Affairs here.