21,000 Rohingya Muslims flee Myanmar amid 'ethnic cleansing'

New figures show at least 21,000 Rohingya Muslims have fled to neighboring Bangladesh amid 'ethnic cleansing' by Myanmar army

  • Date: 2016/12/06
  • Time: 12:09
  • News Code: 33364
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21,000 Rohingya Muslims flee Myanmar amid 'ethnic cleansing'

Thousands of Rohingya Muslims have fled Myanmar to Bangladesh after attack by Myanmar army

VON PRESS Asia & Pacific: The International Organization for Migration said: "An estimated 21,000 Rohingya have arrived in Cox's Bazar between October 9 and December 2."

The government of Myanmar has criticized media reports of violence against the Rohingya, and lodged a formal protest against a UN official in Bangladesh who said the state was carrying out "ethnic cleansing".

And the UN's rights agency has said the Rohingya may be victims of "crimes against humanity", and that Myanmar "has largely failed to act on the recommendations made in a report by the UN Human Rights Office".

It described the violence as "ethnic cleansing" on Saturday.

'Enough is enough'

At the weekend, the Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak led a protest rally against what he called the "genocide" of the Rohingya minority, saying "enough is enough". 

Najib called on the United Nations, the International Criminal Court and the Organization of Islamic Cooperation to intervene.

"The world cannot just sit by and watch genocide taking place," he told the crowd.

Najib's attendance came despite warnings from Myanmar that Malaysia risked violating the Association of Southeast Asian Nations' (ASEAN) principle of non-interference in other members' internal affairs.

In response, Najib said ASEAN, which agreed to declare itself a single community last year, had also pledged in its charter to uphold basic human rights.

He also accused Myanmar leader and Nobel Peace Prize winner Aung San Suu Kyi of inaction, saying that she had declared the Rohingya issue off-limits during bilateral discussions.

"How can this be? We should be allowed to discuss everything," he said.

The violence in Myanmar is the most serious bloodshed in Rakhine since communal clashes in 2012 that killed hundreds.

Persecution and poverty led thousands of Rohingya to flee Myanmar following the violence between Buddhists and Muslims there four years ago. Many of them were smuggled or trafficked to neighboring countries, mostly to Thailand and Malaysia.


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