The Rohingya Muslims in the Rakhine province of Myanmar are going through a brutal ethnic slaughter campaign of an unimaginable size. The scale of the killings, persecution, torture and savagery are beyond comprehension.
The systematic slaughter policy waged towards Muslims since 1942 left only 70,000 out of the initial four million owing to mass murder and displacement. To date, three million Muslims have been forced to migrate to neighboring countries, hundreds of thousands of Muslims have been martyred, tens of thousands of settlement units have been burned and destroyed, tens of thousands of women have been raped, and hundreds of mosques and madrassas have been destroyed. Thousands of Muslims are known to have been imprisoned and tortured, though their fates are unknown.
Muslims living in Rakhine region have been burned alive in their homes in more than 330 attacks, which have worsened since June of last year, in which Muslim villages, including mosques and madrassas were burned. According to independent human rights organizations, in June 2012 alone 1,000 Muslims in the region were ruthlessly martyred and 125,000 people were forced from their homes and villages and left to survive in the jungle.
Just recently, another wave of attack has begun towards Rohingya people and we have heard at least 40 people died, a village of 340 houses and 4000 inhabitants emptied with many Rohingya tied up, taken as slaves, dumped, women who were raped and breasts cut off before they were killed, dead bodies taken by trucks, and arrests of men, women and children. The events that led to this violence began with another violence, the killing of eight Rohingya people by the village administrator, after which a police sergeant was also killed amid the growing clashes.
Human Rights Watch has published a 153-page report concerning the crimes against humanity perpetrated against the Rakhine Muslims in recent months: The report accuses Myanmar authorities of engaging in ethnic cleansing of Rohingya Muslims in Rakhine. According to a UN statement, the Rakhine Muslims are the most persecuted social group in the world.
The state plays a part in these atrocities by either turning a blind eye or preventing humanitarian aid reaching Muslims. Furthermore, the policies and sanctions imposed on Muslims by the state are completely inhuman.
The Rohingya Muslims enjoy no citizenship rights and have no access to any state benefits. They cannot obtain passports and are not admitted to state hospitals. They are forced to work for nothing for the state or in private institutions. They have no rights to enter the civil service or even study beyond high school.
Muslims have to pay taxes simply to go from one village to another. They are not allowed out after 9:00 in the evening, even to visit relatives or neighbors, without police permission.
They have no right to a defense when a crime is committed, and are imprisoned straight away. The police or military can raid their homes on no grounds. They can be arrested arbitrarily for no reason.
The elimination of Muslims in Myanmar, ruled by a military junta between 1962 and 2011, has literally become a policy of state. Power passed to a supposedly democratic administration, still under the control of the communist military junta, in the wake of elections in which wide-ranging fraud took place: As a result, the same military junta is continuing with the same policy through a puppet government. The aim is to eliminate the Muslim population by annihilating it or forcing it into exile.
In recent years, since the Bangladeshi government has closed its borders to the refugees, hundreds of Muslims seeking to flee to that country have drowned in the seas and rivers on the frontier; and this plays into the hands of the Myanmar administration that wishes to entirely purge the country of Muslims.
There are about 150,000 Rohingya displaced from their homes, and recent attacks forces more and more every day. Myanmar government has put together these Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) into camps that are surrounded by checkpoints and wire. Clean water and food are hard to find in these camps and the inhabitants of the camps are starving. The residents are not allowed to go out and work, and no working means no money and no food.
Nine out of ten of Burma’s 53 million people are Buddhists, yet Buddhists and Muslims lived in peace for many years in the past. This is because both religions espouse peace and tolerance towards other religions and condemn killing. Yet, the ethnic conflict of the recent years has been attributed to fanatical Buddhists. The fact is, however, the violence perpetrated against Muslims is executed by mobs and terror organizations clothed as Buddhist monks.
Now the world should hear the silent cries of Rakhine Muslims. International media should be granted access to the region. Otherwise, if the countries continue to watch the oppression, violence and slaughter inflicted on Rakhine Muslims, the ethnic Muslim communities of Myanmar may just vanish off the earth.
Those who watch the persecution and slaughter of Muslims all around the world with weary eyes and are reluctant to see Muslims act as a single body, or who regard it as unnecessary and remain passive and timid, will have to bear the conscientious responsibility for this suffering, pain and shedding of Muslim blood.
Adnan Oktar's article on Burma Times: