Rohingya Muslims; UN is Unable to Restore Peace Rohingya Muslims are mostly called the most persecuted minority in the world. Sidelined into the northwest state of Rakhine, which is alongside border of Muslim majority areas are nationless and unsolicited. They are ethnic Muslim group living in Buddhist Myanmar. Ruaingga is a dialect spoken distinctly in that area. The recognition of Rohingya as a citizen of Myanmar has always been a problem since its independence from Britain in 1948. They haven’t been awarded citizenship in Union Citizenship Act 1948. After military coup of 1962, foreign identification cards were given to them instead of national registration cards. New citizenship law of 1982 rendered Rohingya stateless by not recognizing them as one of the country’s 135 ethnic groups. The tale of atrocities on Rohingya in Rakhine state isn’t new, they are suffering crackdowns, rapes, torture, arson and brutal murders by Myanmar security forces since 1970s. In October 2016, the Rohingya Muslim community was targeted again when government blamed them of killing nine border police officers. This resulted in array of human rights abuses, extrajudicial killings etc. Nearly one million Rohingya Muslims have fled Myanmar due to atrocities. According to the most recent data by United Nations, more than 168,000 Rohingya have fled Myanmar since 2012. International organization of migration estimated the migration of more than 87,000 Rohingya to Bangladesh from Oct-2016 to July-2017. The current leader and state councilor of Myanmar, Aung San Suu Kyi, who came into power by defeating military junta and decades long house arrest just to restore the process of democracy. The recent layer of atrocities is under the rule of Suu kyi. Peace is being destructed under the nose of Nobel peace prize winner, Aung San Suu Kyi. She has denied all allegations of Rohingya genocide and ethnic cleansing of particular community. United Nations and its organizations have passed many resolutions regarding basic right of Rohingya Muslims but all in vain. No strict follow up is conducted after every resolution. Recently, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said he was “deeply concerned” about the ongoing violence in Rakhine. But what’s next?? Would there be any implementation of laws and resolutions, recognizing Rohingya as an ethnic group of Myanmar.
Why suffering is the fate of Muslims, several examples of unresolved disputes are there in the form of Palestine, Syria, Kashmir etc. United Nations and its organizations are a landmark of global peace but they are still unable to restore the peace. UN is spending billions of dollars and manpower in peacekeeping missions all over the world. But the question “is the world leading towards peace” is still a question. There are a lot of expectations from Antonio Guterres regarding restoration of peace and harmony in the world. Let’s see if he will be able to lead UN in exemplary way.
War and oppression is not a solution of such disputes, but should be handled diplomatically by pressurizing Aung San Suu Kyi to intervene vehemently and limit military operation. Moreover, Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and Islamic military alliance (IMA) can play their vital role of moderator, in relieving tension at Myanmar, eventually leading to regional peace.
Dr Nabeel Alvi is a pharmacist by profession and writes for Reporter’s Diary .