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Author Topic: Rohingya: Sebuah Tinjauan Sejarah Atas Konflik yang Berkepanjangan  (Read 3046 times)

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Offline seniya

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Dalam beberapa minggu terakhir, isu tentang konflik Rohingya di Myanmar kembali mencuat ketika ribuan pengungsi Rohingya dari Myanmar terdampar di Aceh setelah diselamatkan para nelayan. Berita-berita tentang konflik etnis di Rakhine, salah satu negara bagian Myanmar yang berbatasan dengan Bangladesh ini pun kembali bermunculan dan menjadi topik hangat di berbagai media sosial setelah sebelumnya sempat tenggelam sejak pemberitaan terakhir tentang kerusuhan etnis tersebut pada tahun 2012 yang silam. Lebih parahnya, banyak pihak yang mengaitkan permasalahan ini sebagai konflik agama tanpa mengetahui latar belakang masalah yang sebenarnya yang telah terjadi ratusan tahun yang lampau. Oleh sebab itu, tulisan ini akan menilik kembali sejarah konflik di Rakhine tersebut sehingga akar permasalahannya menjadi lebih jelas bagi kita semua.

Berdasarkan catatan sejarah, komunitas Muslim telah mendiami wilayah Arakan (nama kuno Rakhine) sejak masa pemerintahan seorang raja Buddhis bernama Narameikhla atau Min Saw Mun (1430–1434) di kerajaan Mrauk U. Setelah diasingkan selama 24 tahun di kesultanan Bengal, Narameikhla mendapatkan tahta di Arakan dengan bantuan dari Sultan Bengal saat itu. Kemudian ia membawa serta orang-orang Bengali untuk tinggal di Arakan dan membantu administrasi pemerintahannya; demikianlah komunitas Muslim pertama terbentuk di wilayah itu.

Saat itu kerajaan Mrauk U berstatus sebagai kerajaan bawahan dari kesultanan Bengal sehingga Raja Narameikhla menggunakan gelar dalam bahasa Arab termasuk dalam nama-nama pejabat istananya dan memakai koin Bengal yang bertuliskan aksara Arab Persia pada satu sisinya dan aksara Burma pada sisi lainnya sebagai mata uangnya. Setelah berhasil melepaskan diri dari kesultanan Bengal, para raja keturunan Narameikhla tetap menggunakan gelar Arab tersebut dan menganggap diri mereka sebagai sultan serta berpakaian meniru sultan Mughal. Mereka tetap mempekerjakan orang-orang Muslim di istana dan walaupun beragama Buddha, berbagai kebiasaan Muslim dari Bengal tetap dipakai. Pada abad ke-17 populasi Muslim meningkat karena mereka dipekerjakan dalam berbagai bidang kehidupan, tidak hanya dalam pemerintahan saja. Suku Kamein, salah satu etnis Muslim di Rakhine yang diakui pemerintah Myanmar saat ini, adalah keturunan orang-orang Muslim yang bermigrasi ke Arakan pada masa ini.

Namun kerukunan dan keharmonisan ini tidak berlangsung lama. Pada tahun 1785 kerajaan Burma dari selatan menyerang dan menguasai Arakan; mereka menerapkan politik diskriminasi dengan mengusir dan mengeksekusi orang-orang Muslim Arakan. Pada tahun 1799 sebanyak 35.000 orang Arakan mengungsi ke wilayah Chittagong di Bengal yang saat itu dikuasai Inggris untuk mencari perlindungan. Orang-orang Arakan tersebut menyebut diri mereka sebagai Rooinga (penduduk asli Arakan), yang kemudian dieja menjadi Rohingya saat ini. Selain itu, pemerintah kerajaan Burma saat itu juga memindahkan sejumlah besar penduduk Arakan ke daerah Burma tengah sehingga membuat populasi wilayah Arakan sangat sedikit ketika Inggris menguasainya.

Pada tahun 1826 wilayah Arakan diduduki oleh pemerintah kolonial Inggris setelah perang Inggris-Burma I (1824-1826). Pemerintah Inggris menerapkan kebijakan memindahkan para petani dari wilayah yang berdekatan ke Arakan yang saat itu sudah ditinggalkan, termasuk orang-orang Rohingya yang sebelumnya mengungsi dan orang-orang Bengali asli dari Chittagong. Saat itu wilayah Arakan dimasukkan dalam daerah administrasi Bengal sehingga tidak ada batas internasional antara keduanya dan migrasi penduduk di kedua wilayah itu terjadi dengan mudah.

Pada awal abad ke-19 gelombang imigrasi dari Bengal ke Arakan semakin meningkat karena didorong oleh kebutuhan akan upah pekerja yang lebih murah yang didatangkan dari India ke Burma. Seiring waktu jumlah populasi para pendatang lebih banyak daripada penduduk asli sehingga tak jarang menimbulkan ketegangan etnis. Pada tahun 1939 konflik di Arakan memuncak sehingga pemerintah Inggris membentuk komisi khusus yang menyelidiki masalah imigrasi di Arakan, namun sebelum komisi tersebut dapat merealisasikan hasil kerjanya, Inggris harus angkat kaki dari Arakan pada akhir Perang Dunia II.

Pada masa Perang Dunia II Jepang menyerang Burma dan mengusir Inggris dari Arakan yang kemudian dikenal sebagai Rakhine. Pada masa kekosongan kekuasaan saat itu, kekerasan antara kedua kelompok suku Rakhine yang beragama Buddha dan suku Rohingya yang beragama Muslim semakin meningkat. Ditambah lagi, orang-orang Rohingya dipersenjatai oleh Inggris guna membantu Sekutu untuk mempertahankan wilayah Arakan dari pendudukan Jepang. Hal ini akhirnya diketahui oleh pemerintah Jepang yang kemudian melakukan penyiksaan, pembunuhan dan pemerkosaan terhadap orang-orang Rohingya. Selama masa ini, puluhan ribu orang Rohingya mengungsi keluar dari Arakan menuju Bengal. Kekerasan yang berlarut-larut juga memaksa ribuan orang Burma, India dan Inggris yang berada di Arakan mengungsi selama periode ini.

Pada tahun 1940-an orang-orang Rohingya berusaha menjalin kerjasama dengan Pakistan di bawah Mohammad Ali Jinnah untuk membebaskan wilayahnya dari Burma, tetapi ditolak oleh pemimpin Pakistan tersebut karena tidak mau mencampuri urusan internal negeri Burma. Pada tahun 1947 orang-orang Rohingya membentuk Partai Mujahid yang merupakan kelompok jihad untuk mendirikan negara Muslim yang merdeka di Arakan utara. Mereka menggunakan istilah Rohingya sebagai identitas etnis mereka dan menyatakan diri sebagai penduduk asli Arakan. Kemudian Burma merdeka pada tahun 1948 dan orang-orang Rohingya semakin gencar melancarkan gerakan separatisnya.

Pada tahun 1962 Jenderal Ne Win melakukan kudeta dan mengambil alih pemerintahan Myanmar. Ia melakukan operasi militer untuk meredam aksi separatis Rohingya. Salah satu operasi militer yang dilancarkan pada tahun 1978 yang disebut “Operasi Raja Naga” menyebabkan lebih dari 200.000 orang Rohingya mengungsi ke Bangladesh akibat kekerasan, pembunuhan dan pemerkosaan besar-besaran. Pemerintah Bangladesh menyatakan protes atas masuknya gelombang pengungsi Rohingya ini. Pada bulan Juli 1978 setelah dimediasi oleh PBB, pemerintah Myanmar menyetujui untuk menerima para imigran Rohingya untuk kembali ke Rakhine. Pada tahun 1982 pemerintah Bangladesh mengamademen undang-undang kewarganegaraannya dan menyatakan Rohingya bukan warga negara Bangladesh.

Sejak tahun 1990 sampai saat ini, pemerintah junta militer Myanmar masih menerapkan politik diskriminasi terhadap suku-suku minoritas di Myanmar, termasuk Rohingya, Kokang dan Panthay. Para pengungsi Rohingya melaporkan mereka mengalami kekerasan dan diskriminasi oleh pemerintah seperti bekerja tanpa digaji dalam proyek-proyek pemerintah dan pelanggaran HAM lainnya.

Pada tahun 2012 kerusuhan rasial pecah antara suku Rakhine dan Rohingya yang dipicu oleh pemerkosaan dan pembunuhan seorang gadis Rakhine oleh para pemuda Rohingya yang disusul pembunuhan sepuluh orang pemuda Muslim dalam sebuah bus oleh orang-orang Rakhine. Menurut pemerintah Myanmar, akibat kekerasan tersebut, 78 orang tewas, 87 orang luka-luka, dan lebih dari 140.000 orang terlantar dari kedua belah pihak baik suku Rakhine maupun Rohingya. Pemerintah menerapkan jam malam dan keadaan darurat yang memungkinkan pihak militer bertindak di Rakhine. Walaupun para aktivitis LSM Rohingya menuduh bahwa pihak kepolisian dan kekuatan militer turut berperan serta dalam kekerasan dan menangkap orang-orang Rohingya, tetapi penyelidikan oleh organisasi International Crisis Group melaporkan bahwa kedua belah pihak mendapatkan perlindungan dan keamanan dari pihak militer.

Pada tahun 2014 pemerintah Myanmar melarang penggunaan istilah Rohingya dan mendaftarkan orang-orang Rohingya sebagai orang Bengali dalam sensus penduduk saat itu. Pada bulan Maret 2015 yang lalu pemerintah Myanmar mencabut kartu identitas penduduk bagi orang-orang Rohingya yang menyebabkan mereka kehilangan kewarganegaraannya dan tidak mendapatkan hak-hak politiknya. Ini menyebabkan orang-orang Rohingya mengungsi ke Thailand, Malaysia dan Indonesia.

Demikianlah sekilas tentang sejarah konflik etnis yang berangkat dari permasalahan sosial politik yang telah berakar selama berabad-abad di wilayah Rakhine. Bagaimana pun, konflik ini hanyalah menyebabkan kesengsaraan pihak-pihak yang bertikai. Oleh sebab itu, setelah mengetahui akar permasalahan konflik ini, semoga para pemimpin dunia dan pihak-pihak yang bersangkutan dapat memberikan solusi yang terbaik demi perdamaian dunia.

Diambil dari: http://sejarah.kompasiana.com/2015/05/24/rohingya-sebuah-tinjauan-sejarah-konflik-yang-berkepanjangan-719132.html
"Holmes once said not to allow your judgement to be biased by personal qualities, and emotional qualities are antagonistic to clear reasoning."
~ Shinichi Kudo a.k.a Conan Edogawa

Offline hexel

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Prinsip hidup yang selalu mengharuskan untuk menjadi pemimpin mengakibatkan sering terjadinya pergolakan dari minoritas. Jika tak mengubah prinsip hidup ini maka dimanapun berada ketika ditakdirkan menjadi minoritas maka akan selalu terjadi pergolakan.  _/\_

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itu kerusuhan versi pertama wikileaks mencatat ada nya 2 versi, lagi di cari lagi sebelah mana

Offline kullatiro

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C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 RANGOON 001186
SIPDIS
STATE FOR EAP/MLS
E.O. 12958: DECL: 10/19/2015
TAGS: PGOV PHUM PREL BM NLD
SUBJECT: MANDALAY ACTIVISTS MANAGE TO PERSEVERE
Classified By: APAO Kim Penland for Reasons 1.4 (b,d)
¶ 1.  (C) SUMMARY:  The Charge met in Mandalay on October 7
with NLD senior organizer Win Mya Mya, the leadership of
YMCA, and toured the Phaung Daw Oo Monastery high school.
These activists report that the government has made it
increasingly difficult to operate within Mandalay and the
surrounding villages.  The government has also restricted NLD
meetings, begun a covert campaign to pit Muslims against
Buddhists within the party, and boarded up NLD signboards
notifying the public of the location of three different
offices.  END SUMMARY.
Win Mya Mya Continues to Stand Up to Government
--------------------------------------------- ---
¶ 2.  (C) Win Mya Mya is the spokesperson for the NLD in
Mandalay and comes from a staunch family of NLD supporters.
In the May 30, 2003 Depayin attack, when she was
55-years-old, government thugs broke both her arms.  She
still bears a six inch scar on her left arm, and she no
longer has full use of her right hand.  Although she has been
arrested and re-imprisoned almost every year since 2001, she
continues to be an outspoken dissident who often defies the
regime outright.  Her family owns a number of tailor shops
which have become informal gathering points for citizens who
wish to see or communicate with her.  The government
regularly visits these shops to tell her employees and
customers not to gather.  These warnings have increased in
frequency so that people have begun to exercise more caution,
but according to Win Mya Mya, they still find ways to quietly
inform her about the activities of various groups.
¶ 3.  (C) Win Mya Mya told the Charge that government pressure
has increased in the past few months.  She said since 1996
the government has waged a campaign of elimination against
NLD members, which includes both imprisonment and offering
NLD members financial enticements to leave the party.  Many
NLD members have been forced by their political activism to
sacrifice economic gains to the point where they have been
forced to sell their cars and homes, so these enticements
have some appeal.
¶ 4.  (C) Win Mya Mya said that in recent months Mandalay
authorities have been actively trying to squash NLD
operations by boarding up NLD signboards at three separate
locations  and homes and refusing to grant permission for
large gatherings.  The NLD has worked around this by using
its members' homes.  She said authorities tried to restrict
attendance at recent NLD meetings to 50. She refused, but
promised NLD would take care of security and would not make
inflammatory speeches.  Five hundred NLD supporters
subsequently gathered peacefully with no interference.
Meanwhile, in a nearby township, government authorities have
attempted to befriend NLD members in an attempt to infiltrate
and neutralize the party, said Win Mya Mya.
Pitting Muslims Against Buddhists
---------------------------------
¶ 5.  (C) Win Mya Mya said that the government also attempted
to instigate a rift between Buddhist and Muslim NLD members.
Leaflets, supposedly written by the Monks Association, were
distributed on the streets of Mandalay stating that the monks
should unite to root out Muslim influence in the party.  In
addition, the notice made derogatory references to Mya Mya
Win, who is Muslim, stating "What is the NLD in Mandalay
doing today... following Daw Suu Kyi's path or Kalama
(derogatory word for Indian) Win Mya Mya's?"  An accompanying
notice, with no signature, criticizes Win Mya Mya's pride and
attitude, stating, "Do not be a copycat to the daughter of a
National leader, you cannot compare."   (The full translated
texts of both documents have been emailed to EAP/MLS desk
officer Alex Barrasso.)  Win Mya Mya professed to be
untroubled by the propaganda, and suggested the general
public understands that it is a ruse on the part of the
regime.  In addition, she has spoken to the Monks
Association, which disavowed the leaflets.  Win Mya Mya added
that she has a very strong, positive relationship with the
Monks Association because her family regularly sends food and
other goods to imprisoned monks.
¶ 6.  (C) Win Mya Mya told the Charge that the NLD appreciates
and supports the recent Tutu-Havel report, especially its
nonviolent approach, and welcomes the UN Security Council's
taking up the issue of Burma.  The Charge said that the U.S.
actively supports the initiative to have the UNSC discuss
Burma.  Win Mya Mya said that the NLD has sacrificed much and
she requested the U.S. provide support to pro-democracy
activists.  The Charge responded that one of our highest
priorities is to provide moral support to pro-democracy
activists.  She said that many in the Embassy were frustrated
with the present situation and wanted to do more, so if the
Win Mya Mya had any specific requests the Embassy would be
pleased to consider them.  Win Mya Mya replied that she was
proud to hear this.
Local NGOs Find Ways Around the Authorities
-------------------------------------------
¶ 7. (C) Mandalay YMCA and World Vision activists told the
Charge that government officials recently began restricting
NGOs from direct community involvement.  Pending projects
range from the establishment of a primary school to
introducing a program on personal hygiene to children in
local communities.  Many Township Coordinators, who approved
projects in the past, can no longer do so because their
superiors have made it clear that final approval will no
longer be forthcoming for any project.  The climate is such
that Township Coordinators are scared to approach even those
authorities who might accept and approve project proposals.
Even though World Vision has an MOU with the Ministry of
Heath to provide better health care to Burmese citizens,
every new project now must receive permission to take place.
If the project does not strictly adhere to the MOU, the
government refuses permission.  In addition, the government
has made it harder to get visa extensions for foreigners
working with YMCA and World Vision.
¶ 8.  (C) However, the YMCA can still organize and hold various
classes and workshops at their Mandalay headquarters and at
its branches around Mandalay, including on topics such as
grassroots organizing and leadership.   The activists agreed
that despite the added pressures, they would continue to make
end-runs around the regime.  One of the participants, who has
his own travel business, said that the government recently
began refusing to allow international tourists to donate
school supplies directly to poor schools north of Mandalay.
He therefore put in requests for supplies from the schools
that happened to match the donations received, and then told
the government that a local person would fill the schools'
request.
Monastery Runs the Only Quasi-Private School in Burma
--------------------------------------------- --------
¶ 9.  (C) The Charge toured the Phaung Daw Oo Monastery High
School -- one of the few schools that provide an education
and curriculum not entirely dictated by the government.  The
Monastery has a total of 5,885 students, most of whom are
poor.  They come from throughout Burma, including minority
areas.  All of the students benefit from the higher standard
of training the teachers have received, and 227 of the
brightest students, regardless of ethnicity or sex, are
taught classes in both Burmese and English with the English
courses using imported textbooks and supplementing the
curriculum.  U Nayaka, the abbot, said that they were given
the freedom to offer extra curricula and better teaching
methodologies because they fall under the jurisdiction of the
Ministry of Religious Affairs, rather than the Ministry of
Education like all other schools.  However, there are only
two high schools like this in the entire country and the
other only uses the Burmese curriculum.
¶ 10.  (C) Comment:  Mandalay is the second largest city and is
the cultural heart of Burma.  We spoke to a variety of people
willing to stick their necks out to make a positive
difference in their country.  They have a sense of how hard
and where they can push to do more for the disadvantaged.
These particular individuals are not unique.  Many people
throughout the country quietly strive for ways to bring
change to Burma.  The cumulative impact of these individual
efforts can be powerful, but it may take time.  End Comment.
Villarosa

https://wikileaks.org/cable/2005/10/05RANGOON1186.html

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C O N F I D E N T I A L RANGOON 000248
SIPDIS
SIPDIS
STATE FOR EAP/MLS; PACOM FOR FPA
E.O. 12958: DECL: 02/21/2016
TAGS: PGOV PHUM PINS PREL ECON KISL BM
SUBJECT: COMMUNAL RIOTS IN MAGWAY DIVISION
REF: A. 04 RANGOON 1497
¶ B. 03 RANGOON 1361
Classified By: Poloff Dean Tidwell for Reasons 1.4 (b, d)
¶ 1. (SBU) SUMMARY: Communal rioting erupted between Buddhist
and Muslim communities in central Burma on February 16.
Sources report that three people died and ten others
sustained injuries as Buddhist Burmans attacked Muslim and
Indian shops, homes, and mosques.  Authorities imposed a news
blackout and curfews in the region in an effort to prevent a
spread to other regions, as happened after similar communal
riots in 2003.  END SUMMARY.
¶ 2. (C) Embassy sources corroborated international media
reports that rioting erupted between Buddhist and
Muslim/Indian communities in Magway Division in central Burma
on February 16.  Following rumors that Muslim men had
allegedly raped a Burman woman near Sinbyukyun town, ethnic
Burmans attacked and torched Muslim and ethnic Indian homes,
shops, and mosques.  The rioting and looting spread to other
towns on February 17 and 18, including Chauk, about 25 miles
south of Bagan.  According to media reports, local security
forces initially did not intervene, but as the violence
spread authorities imposed a strict curfew in several towns.
¶ 3. (C) An Embassy source said that authorities arrested 17
people in Sinbyukyun, including four NLD members.  The same
source said that police arrested 55 persons in Chauk, most of
whom were Muslim.  Unofficial sources claimed that three
people died in the riots and another 10 were injured.
ANOTHER VERSION
¶ 4. (C) According to a Muslim cleric contact in Rangoon, it
was not a rape, but an ethnic misunderstanding that sparked
the riots.  A Muslim-operated taxi did not stop when the lone
Burman woman passenger asked to get off.  The driver was
reportedly listening to music through earphones and did not
hear her.  When the vehicle did not stop, the woman panicked,
jumped off the moving vehicle, and broke her leg.  Burman
sources claimed, instead, that Muslim youths had raped the
local woman, the daughter of a prominent Buddhist abbot, and
dropped her along the roadside to die.  Assuming the latter,
local ethnic Burman men commenced reprisal attacks against
Muslims and South Asians.
¶ 5. (C) COMMENT: In October 2003, similar communal riots
between Buddhist and Muslims in Kyaukse, Mandalay Division
rapidly spread to other parts of the country (reftels).  The
GOB reacted more quickly this time, but the incident reveals
underlying tense inter-ethnic relations in the heartland.  As
a result of the regime's tight control of information,
rumormongering takes on added importance.  Rumormongering
combined with ethnic tensions makes single incidents all the
more combustible and likely to spread.  END COMMENT.
VILLAROSA


https://wikileaks.org/cable/2006/02/06RANGOON248.html

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Viewing cable 06RANGOON235, BURMA'S VAST INTERNMENT CAMP: NORTHERN RAKHINE


C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 05 RANGOON 000235
SIPDIS
SIPDIS
STATE FOR EAP/MLS AND PRM
PACOM FOR FPA
E.O. 12958: DECL: 02/17/2016
TAGS: PHUM PREF PREL EAID BM
SUBJECT: BURMA'S VAST INTERNMENT CAMP: NORTHERN RAKHINE
STATE
REF: 226
RANGOON 00000235  001.2 OF 005
Classified By: CDA Shari Villarosa for Reasons 1.4 (b,d)
¶ 1.  (SBU)  Summary:  In a country where everyone is oppressed
by the military, some are treated worse than others.  In
general, the ethnic minorities are treated worse than the
ethnic Burman majority, and non-Buddhists face more
restrictions on their religious practices.  Charge visited
Northern Rakhine State January 25-27 with a group of other
diplomats organized by UNHCR to learn why the international
community in Burma agrees that the Muslims living in Northern
Rakhine State are treated worst of all.  Absent dramatic
political changes, UNHCR presence there may be required
indefinitely to ensure the basic survival of these people "of
concern" living in the most miserable of
circumstances--lacking freedom of movement, citizenship, and
land.  The current regime does not recognize these people as
citizens, merely as residents.  They are stateless.  The
district military commander and the district peace and
development council have almost a blank check to control the
Muslims as they see fit.  The primary tactic they use is
humiliation.  We should provide humanitarian assistance in
coordination with other donors and assist a local Muslim
group addressing their educational needs. End Summary
GRIM CONDITIONS
¶ 2.  (SBU) The Muslims of Northern Rakhine State (they call
themselves Rohingyas, which the regime rejects, instead
calling them Bengali-speaking Muslims) have been persecuted
for more than 40 years.  We visited the two townships where
most of the Muslims are concentrated:  Maungdaw (97% Muslim)
and Buthidaung (95% Muslim).  The previous dictator, Ne Win,
tried to force them from their native Rakhine lands in the
1960s.  An estimated one million left, according to the
Pakistani Ambassador, with many ending up in Pakistan, Saudi
Arabia, as well as neighboring Bangladesh.  Many returned
home in the 1970s, but then faced persecution again in
1977-78 when 500,000 fled to Bangladesh (again most returned)
and the early 1990s when 350,000 left (and again most
returned).  Today, according to UN estimates, 850,000 people
live in Northern Rakhine State (the three northernmost
townships of Rakhine State bordering Bangladesh); over 90%
are Muslim; over 50% are landless; and 80% are illiterate.
Northern Rakhine State is the most densely populated rural
area in Burma with 164 people/square kilometer compared to
the national average of 74.  Infant mortality is four times
the national average (71 per 1000 births); 64% of children
under five are chronically malnourished and stunted growth is
common.  Teachers are scarce as well with one for every 79
students vice the 1:40 national average.
¶ 3.  (SBU)  The combination of high population density and low
productivity results in an annual rice deficit.  In addition,
rice prices are set higher than elsewhere in Burma to stem
smuggling to Bangladesh.  The World Food Program, the Food
and Agriculture Organization and INGOs have tried to assist
with alternative crops suitable for dry season cultivation.
The landless depend on seasonal work, primarily rice
cultivation from June-December.  80% are illiterate with few
marketable skills.   The scarcity of work and rice becomes
most pronounced from March-May.  Government restrictions on
freedom of movement of people and goods hamper trade.
¶ 4.  (SBU) Most of the last group of refugees returned a
decade ago, and now only a few of the estimated 20,000
refugees remaining in Bangladesh trickle back (210 returned
in 2004 and 92 returned in 2005).  The remaining refugees
RANGOON 00000235  002.2 OF 005
retain the option of returning, but UNHCR does not encourage
them to return.  UNHCR has shifted from providing
resettlement assistance to providing protection.  It regards
all of the Muslims in these three townships as "of concern"
due to their miserable circumstances and lack of legal
status.  One UNHCR rep working in Northern Rakhine State said
he did not mind the isolation or separation from his family,
but found the sense of hopelessness hardest to handle.  UNHCR
representatives described the environment as one of their
most difficult anywhere because they have no agreement with
the authorities on basic standards and no laws.
NO FREEDOM OF MOVEMENT
¶ 5.  (SBU)  To guard this "vast internment camp" the military
has stationed 8000 soldiers and customs and immigration
officials at 108 locations manning 50 checkpoints.    This
makes it difficult for the people to access health clinics,
schools and other programs set up by NGOs to provide basic
services and training.  Permission to leave the townships is
even harder.  A local professional with UNHCR said his
daughter won prizes for being the top student in her high
school, but was not allowed to travel outside the township to
sit for university exams.  His son had faced the same
situation and chose to go to Bangladesh for a university
education; now his son does not plan to return.  Muslims
interested in working with UNHCR must be willing to sacrifice
their freedom of movement.  Even though they are not subject
to these restrictions in Rangoon where they have long lived
with their families, once they go to Northern Rakhine State
to work for UNHCR, they too lose their freedom of movement.
UNHCR will intervene to give these employees opportunities to
visit their families, but again it depends on the whims of
the local authorities.
LITTLE EDUCATION
¶ 6.  (SBU) Based on the large numbers of children we saw out
of school, the majority of children do not attend public
schools.  Madrassahs have been set up in many villages to
provide some education to boys; girls generally receive the
least education.  We met with a group of women who had formed
a microlending program.  When asked what they would do with
additional income earned, they said they would send another
child to school, with boys given precedence.  The women
estimated annual school fees at the equivalent of $20.
Several of the women had one or two children in school, but
they also noted that they had a total of 5-7 children.  The
one school we visited had 380 students in one extended
classroom and only two teachers.  The day we visited, the
students were receiving their monthly allocation of 20 pounds
of rice from the World Food Program.  World Food Program
estimates their school feeding program has achieved a 300
percent increase in school attendance, reaching 87,000
students.   Many of the NGO-run health centers have day care
facilities attached to provide meals and some instruction to
pre-school aged children.
FORCED LABOR, FORCED RELOCATIONS, and FORCED CONTRIBUTIONS
¶ 7.  (SBU) With half the population and 90 percent of the
returnees landless, the people become more vulnerable to
demands for forced labor and forced contributions.  The
forced labor can vary from carrying loads for government
officials, standing sentry duty on the major paths around the
villages to report any outsiders without approvals, repairing
roads, and anything else an official feels entitled to demand
of the population.  The UNHCR reports that the number of
forced labor complaints have declined since the peak in 2001,
RANGOON 00000235  003.2 OF 005
with 80 filed in 2005.  UNHCR representatives said that they
would intervene even without a complaint where they note
"high levels" of forced labor.  Rape is less common than in
other ethnic areas, according to UNHCR representatives.
¶ 8. (SBU) All land in Burma is owned by the state with a
system of land tenancy.  The landless farm as sharecroppers,
with the shares depending on the goodwill of the individual
with land tenancy rights.  In keeping with the divide and
rule tactics used throughout the country, the authorities
have coopted the elite by giving some land tenancy rights.
Nevertheless, both the landless and those with land tenancy
rights have no appeal should authorities arbitrarily revoke
their land rights.  Usually they are forced from their
traditional land as the authorities move in ethnic Burmans
and ethnic Rakhines.  In one case, the authorities populated
a model village with urban criminals released from prison.
The authorities provided the released criminals with large
homes with metal roofs and electricity along with substantial
farmland on the condition that they live in Northern Rakhine
State.  The authorities then told the criminals that they
could make the Muslims work their lands.
¶ 9. (SBU) The Muslims in Rakhine face additional demands.  For
instance, since there are relatively few Buddhists in the
region, the authorities force Muslims to build Buddhist
temples and monasteries, while denying them permission to
make repairs to their mosques.  The Muslims of Northern
Rakhine do not face pressures to join the regime's mass
member organization, the United Solidarity and Development
Association, since they are not regarded as citizens.
However, they still must contribute plastic chairs, or the
cash equivalent, to USDA for their rallies.
DAILY HUMILIATION
¶ 10. (SBU) The Muslims must request permission to travel from
one village to another, to marry, to improve their homes, and
to do anything else the authorities can think of.  These
permits usually also require payment of a fee.  Women must
register their pregnancies.  The procedures change frequently
and largely depend on the whim of the approving authority
keeping the Muslims confused and becoming a costly burden.
UNHCR will intervene when the demands become too egregious.
For instance, to reduce birth rates, the authorities in 2005
decided to stop granting approval for marriages until UNHCR
intervened.  Then some local authorities imposed a new rule
that they would approve marriages, but the prospective groom
would have to submit a photo with no beard, contrary to his
religious practices, with his application.
¶ 11.  (SBU) While we saw new Buddhist temples and monasteries
throughout the area (mostly built with forced labor), the
majority of the mosques were crumbling.  One mosque had
salvaged metal siding randomly tacked up for walls.
Crumbling thatched roofs covering the mosques were common.  A
mosque in the center of Maungdaw town had been converted to a
fire station by the authorities.  The authorities usually
deny permission to repair mosques, but occasionally one might
be permitted.  After the repairs are made, according to UNHCR
reps, just to humiliate the people and show who's in charge,
the authorities sometimes claim that the work went beyond the
permit and order it all dismantled.
INTERNATIONAL REACTION
¶ 12.  (U) This trip also provided an overview of the
international programs to assist the people of Northern
Rakhine State.  The UNHCR has the lead among the UN agencies
RANGOON 00000235  004.2 OF 005
here and works through international NGOs (INGOs) to provide
Burmese language training to women to decrease their
marginalization and to children so that they can enroll in
school, health care, skills development for the most
vulnerable populations, income generation and financial
self-help for the most vulnerable.  The INGOs operating in
Northern Rakhine State include:  Action Contre la Faim
(nutrition program), Aide Medicale Internacionale (primary
health care in Buthidaung township, but running into problems
with local authorities because their clinics are more popular
than public health clinics), Bridge Asia Japan (basic rural
infrastructure), CARE Australia (agro-forestry, including
securing land rights to sloping land), Community and Family
Services International (community services and language
training), Groupe de Recherche et d'Echanges Technologiques
(agricultural production), Malteser (primary health care in
Maungdaw Township with good working relations with local
authorities; training community health workers), Medecins
Sans Frontieres-Holland (malaria, TB, HIV/AIDS preventions).
The major donors are the European Commission/European Union,
Japan, Australia, Germany, UAE, and Norway.

¶ 13. (C) More dispiriting has been the reaction of others from whom we expected more sympathy:

Bangladesh:

 The Ambassador participated in this visit. Although he acknowledged the terrible conditions, he found
conditions in some ways better than in Bangladesh.  "In Bangladesh people have a state, but no land; here they have no state, but land to farm."  He made clear his primary concern is that the Northern Rakhine Muslims do not return to Bangladesh.

Pakistan: 

The Ambassador participated in this visit.  He provided historical background on how Pakistan had tried to
help in the past, but did not offer to do anything more than wring his hands now.  He whispered that the U.S. must speak out about this, and could not respond when asked why Pakistan
did not speak out.  He subsequently thanked Charge for asking the District Officer, a Lt. Col and the most senior official we met, about lifting restrictions on freedom of movement.


Singapore: 

The Ambassador participated in this visit and coined the best description:  a vast internment camp.  When asked why other Muslim nations did not speak out, he said they all have problems with minorities, who claim some separateness, citing the example of the Kurds.  If these nations highlighted the plight of the Rohingyas, then they would, at a minimum, look hypocritical, for not addressing the demands of minority groups in their own countries.

India: 

The Ambassador and DCM both agreed that the situation was inhumane, but they professed greater concern that the Rohingyas would become terrorists, saying we should focus our attention there, rather than trying to improve their plight.

Saudi Arabia:

 They have just opened an Embassy in Rangoon. The Saudi Charge made clear that the primary goal of this Embassy is to repatriate 120,000 Rohingyas living without documents in Saudi Arabia for many years.  They had entered Saudi Arabia on Pakistan and Bangladesh passports, but those countries refused to renew them.  Charge asked if he realized that sending them back would effectively mean sending them to prison.  He acknowledged that the timing might not be right, but that the situation in Burma might improve in the future.When asked about the relatively small number of Rohingyas in comparison with other overseas workers in Saudi Arabia (he rattled off:  1 million each from Egypt and Pakistan, 900,000 from Indonesia, 400,000 from the Philippines), he replied

RANGOON 00000235  005.2 OF 005

that the others all had passports.

Burmese political activists in exile whom Charge met February
13:  After proudly describing their efforts to develop a
constitution in consultation with representatives of various
ethnic groups, Charge asked about the provisions they had
made for the Muslims of Northern Rakhine State.  The first
response:  they are not citizens.  They disputed Charge's
assertion that these people had been living in that area for
hundreds of years.  Finally they admitted to an agreement
with the Arakans (a Buddhist ethnic group inhabiting the rest
of Rakhine State), that the Muslims would not have the right
to a separate state, but that they would be accorded
individual rights.

COMMENT
¶ 14. (SBU) The Rohingyas are a small group of oppressed people
in a country full of many oppressed people.  The others have
received more attention because their plight has made it to
the international press.  The military has effectively sealed
the Rohingyas off from the world and keeps them at the bare
subsistence level-it is an internment camp.  The
international community, with the UNHCR in the lead, has
responded to enable these people to survive-just.  If
international donors disappeared, the fate of these people
would be far worse.  Their only hope for better lives is a
government willing to accord them basic rights of citizenship
and freedom.  The current government essentially acts as
prison guards.  We should not assume that any future
democratic government will accord these people their basic
human rights, but should insist on it.  In the meantime, we
should join other donors in providing humanitarian assistance
to the Rohingyas and send the message to the military that we
will not permit their elimination.  We also recommend support
for efforts by the Islamic Center in Rangoon to start an
English language program in Northern Rakhine State (reftel).
VILLAROSA


https://wikileaks.org/cable/2006/02/06RANGOON248.html
« Last Edit: 26 May 2015, 09:57:58 PM by kullatiro »

Offline Kelana

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Viewing cable 06RANGOON235, BURMA'S VAST INTERNMENT CAMP: NORTHERN RAKHINE


C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 05 RANGOON 000235
SIPDIS
SIPDIS
STATE FOR EAP/MLS AND PRM
PACOM FOR FPA
E.O. 12958: DECL: 02/17/2016
TAGS: PHUM PREF PREL EAID BM
SUBJECT: BURMA'S VAST INTERNMENT CAMP: NORTHERN RAKHINE
STATE
REF: 226
RANGOON 00000235  001.2 OF 005
Classified By: CDA Shari Villarosa for Reasons 1.4 (b,d)
¶ 1.  (SBU)  Summary:  In a country where everyone is oppressed
by the military, some are treated worse than others.  In
general, the ethnic minorities are treated worse than the
ethnic Burman majority, and non-Buddhists face more
restrictions on their religious practices.  Charge visited
Northern Rakhine State January 25-27 with a group of other
diplomats organized by UNHCR to learn why the international
community in Burma agrees that the Muslims living in Northern
Rakhine State are treated worst of all.  Absent dramatic
political changes, UNHCR presence there may be required
indefinitely to ensure the basic survival of these people "of
concern" living in the most miserable of
circumstances--lacking freedom of movement, citizenship, and
land.  The current regime does not recognize these people as
citizens, merely as residents.  They are stateless.  The
district military commander and the district peace and
development council have almost a blank check to control the
Muslims as they see fit.  The primary tactic they use is
humiliation.  We should provide humanitarian assistance in
coordination with other donors and assist a local Muslim
group addressing their educational needs. End Summary
GRIM CONDITIONS
¶ 2.  (SBU) The Muslims of Northern Rakhine State (they call
themselves Rohingyas, which the regime rejects, instead
calling them Bengali-speaking Muslims) have been persecuted
for more than 40 years.  We visited the two townships where
most of the Muslims are concentrated:  Maungdaw (97% Muslim)
and Buthidaung (95% Muslim).  The previous dictator, Ne Win,
tried to force them from their native Rakhine lands in the
1960s.  An estimated one million left, according to the
Pakistani Ambassador, with many ending up in Pakistan, Saudi
Arabia, as well as neighboring Bangladesh.  Many returned
home in the 1970s, but then faced persecution again in
1977-78 when 500,000 fled to Bangladesh (again most returned)
and the early 1990s when 350,000 left (and again most
returned).  Today, according to UN estimates, 850,000 people
live in Northern Rakhine State (the three northernmost
townships of Rakhine State bordering Bangladesh); over 90%
are Muslim; over 50% are landless; and 80% are illiterate.
Northern Rakhine State is the most densely populated rural
area in Burma with 164 people/square kilometer compared to
the national average of 74.  Infant mortality is four times
the national average (71 per 1000 births); 64% of children
under five are chronically malnourished and stunted growth is
common.  Teachers are scarce as well with one for every 79
students vice the 1:40 national average.
¶ 3.  (SBU)  The combination of high population density and low
productivity results in an annual rice deficit.  In addition,
rice prices are set higher than elsewhere in Burma to stem
smuggling to Bangladesh.  The World Food Program, the Food
and Agriculture Organization and INGOs have tried to assist
with alternative crops suitable for dry season cultivation.
The landless depend on seasonal work, primarily rice
cultivation from June-December.  80% are illiterate with few
marketable skills.   The scarcity of work and rice becomes
most pronounced from March-May.  Government restrictions on
freedom of movement of people and goods hamper trade.
¶ 4.  (SBU) Most of the last group of refugees returned a
decade ago, and now only a few of the estimated 20,000
refugees remaining in Bangladesh trickle back (210 returned
in 2004 and 92 returned in 2005).  The remaining refugees
RANGOON 00000235  002.2 OF 005
retain the option of returning, but UNHCR does not encourage
them to return.  UNHCR has shifted from providing
resettlement assistance to providing protection.  It regards
all of the Muslims in these three townships as "of concern"
due to their miserable circumstances and lack of legal
status.  One UNHCR rep working in Northern Rakhine State said
he did not mind the isolation or separation from his family,
but found the sense of hopelessness hardest to handle.  UNHCR
representatives described the environment as one of their
most difficult anywhere because they have no agreement with
the authorities on basic standards and no laws.
NO FREEDOM OF MOVEMENT
¶ 5.  (SBU)  To guard this "vast internment camp" the military
has stationed 8000 soldiers and customs and immigration
officials at 108 locations manning 50 checkpoints.    This
makes it difficult for the people to access health clinics,
schools and other programs set up by NGOs to provide basic
services and training.  Permission to leave the townships is
even harder.  A local professional with UNHCR said his
daughter won prizes for being the top student in her high
school, but was not allowed to travel outside the township to
sit for university exams.  His son had faced the same
situation and chose to go to Bangladesh for a university
education; now his son does not plan to return.  Muslims
interested in working with UNHCR must be willing to sacrifice
their freedom of movement.  Even though they are not subject
to these restrictions in Rangoon where they have long lived
with their families, once they go to Northern Rakhine State
to work for UNHCR, they too lose their freedom of movement.
UNHCR will intervene to give these employees opportunities to
visit their families, but again it depends on the whims of
the local authorities.
LITTLE EDUCATION
¶ 6.  (SBU) Based on the large numbers of children we saw out
of school, the majority of children do not attend public
schools.  Madrassahs have been set up in many villages to
provide some education to boys; girls generally receive the
least education.  We met with a group of women who had formed
a microlending program.  When asked what they would do with
additional income earned, they said they would send another
child to school, with boys given precedence.  The women
estimated annual school fees at the equivalent of $20.
Several of the women had one or two children in school, but
they also noted that they had a total of 5-7 children.  The
one school we visited had 380 students in one extended
classroom and only two teachers.  The day we visited, the
students were receiving their monthly allocation of 20 pounds
of rice from the World Food Program.  World Food Program
estimates their school feeding program has achieved a 300
percent increase in school attendance, reaching 87,000
students.   Many of the NGO-run health centers have day care
facilities attached to provide meals and some instruction to
pre-school aged children.
FORCED LABOR, FORCED RELOCATIONS, and FORCED CONTRIBUTIONS
¶ 7.  (SBU) With half the population and 90 percent of the
returnees landless, the people become more vulnerable to
demands for forced labor and forced contributions.  The
forced labor can vary from carrying loads for government
officials, standing sentry duty on the major paths around the
villages to report any outsiders without approvals, repairing
roads, and anything else an official feels entitled to demand
of the population.  The UNHCR reports that the number of
forced labor complaints have declined since the peak in 2001,
RANGOON 00000235  003.2 OF 005
with 80 filed in 2005.  UNHCR representatives said that they
would intervene even without a complaint where they note
"high levels" of forced labor.  Rape is less common than in
other ethnic areas, according to UNHCR representatives.
¶ 8. (SBU) All land in Burma is owned by the state with a
system of land tenancy.  The landless farm as sharecroppers,
with the shares depending on the goodwill of the individual
with land tenancy rights.  In keeping with the divide and
rule tactics used throughout the country, the authorities
have coopted the elite by giving some land tenancy rights.
Nevertheless, both the landless and those with land tenancy
rights have no appeal should authorities arbitrarily revoke
their land rights.  Usually they are forced from their
traditional land as the authorities move in ethnic Burmans
and ethnic Rakhines.  In one case, the authorities populated
a model village with urban criminals released from prison.
The authorities provided the released criminals with large
homes with metal roofs and electricity along with substantial
farmland on the condition that they live in Northern Rakhine
State.  The authorities then told the criminals that they
could make the Muslims work their lands.
¶ 9. (SBU) The Muslims in Rakhine face additional demands.  For
instance, since there are relatively few Buddhists in the
region, the authorities force Muslims to build Buddhist
temples and monasteries, while denying them permission to
make repairs to their mosques.  The Muslims of Northern
Rakhine do not face pressures to join the regime's mass
member organization, the United Solidarity and Development
Association, since they are not regarded as citizens.
However, they still must contribute plastic chairs, or the
cash equivalent, to USDA for their rallies.
DAILY HUMILIATION
¶ 10. (SBU) The Muslims must request permission to travel from
one village to another, to marry, to improve their homes, and
to do anything else the authorities can think of.  These
permits usually also require payment of a fee.  Women must
register their pregnancies.  The procedures change frequently
and largely depend on the whim of the approving authority
keeping the Muslims confused and becoming a costly burden.
UNHCR will intervene when the demands become too egregious.
For instance, to reduce birth rates, the authorities in 2005
decided to stop granting approval for marriages until UNHCR
intervened.  Then some local authorities imposed a new rule
that they would approve marriages, but the prospective groom
would have to submit a photo with no beard, contrary to his
religious practices, with his application.
¶ 11.  (SBU) While we saw new Buddhist temples and monasteries
throughout the area (mostly built with forced labor), the
majority of the mosques were crumbling.  One mosque had
salvaged metal siding randomly tacked up for walls.
Crumbling thatched roofs covering the mosques were common.  A
mosque in the center of Maungdaw town had been converted to a
fire station by the authorities.  The authorities usually
deny permission to repair mosques, but occasionally one might
be permitted.  After the repairs are made, according to UNHCR
reps, just to humiliate the people and show who's in charge,
the authorities sometimes claim that the work went beyond the
permit and order it all dismantled.
INTERNATIONAL REACTION
¶ 12.  (U) This trip also provided an overview of the
international programs to assist the people of Northern
Rakhine State.  The UNHCR has the lead among the UN agencies
RANGOON 00000235  004.2 OF 005
here and works through international NGOs (INGOs) to provide
Burmese language training to women to decrease their
marginalization and to children so that they can enroll in
school, health care, skills development for the most
vulnerable populations, income generation and financial
self-help for the most vulnerable.  The INGOs operating in
Northern Rakhine State include:  Action Contre la Faim
(nutrition program), Aide Medicale Internacionale (primary
health care in Buthidaung township, but running into problems
with local authorities because their clinics are more popular
than public health clinics), Bridge Asia Japan (basic rural
infrastructure), CARE Australia (agro-forestry, including
securing land rights to sloping land), Community and Family
Services International (community services and language
training), Groupe de Recherche et d'Echanges Technologiques
(agricultural production), Malteser (primary health care in
Maungdaw Township with good working relations with local
authorities; training community health workers), Medecins
Sans Frontieres-Holland (malaria, TB, HIV/AIDS preventions).
The major donors are the European Commission/European Union,
Japan, Australia, Germany, UAE, and Norway.

¶ 13. (C) More dispiriting has been the reaction of others from whom we expected more sympathy:

Bangladesh:

 The Ambassador participated in this visit. Although he acknowledged the terrible conditions, he found
conditions in some ways better than in Bangladesh.  "In Bangladesh people have a state, but no land; here they have no state, but land to farm."  He made clear his primary concern is that the Northern Rakhine Muslims do not return to Bangladesh.

Pakistan: 

The Ambassador participated in this visit.  He provided historical background on how Pakistan had tried to
help in the past, but did not offer to do anything more than wring his hands now.  He whispered that the U.S. must speak out about this, and could not respond when asked why Pakistan
did not speak out.  He subsequently thanked Charge for asking the District Officer, a Lt. Col and the most senior official we met, about lifting restrictions on freedom of movement.


Singapore: 

The Ambassador participated in this visit and coined the best description:  a vast internment camp.  When asked why other Muslim nations did not speak out, he said they all have problems with minorities, who claim some separateness, citing the example of the Kurds.  If these nations highlighted the plight of the Rohingyas, then they would, at a minimum, look hypocritical, for not addressing the demands of minority groups in their own countries.

India: 

The Ambassador and DCM both agreed that the situation was inhumane, but they professed greater concern that the Rohingyas would become terrorists, saying we should focus our attention there, rather than trying to improve their plight.

Saudi Arabia:

 They have just opened an Embassy in Rangoon. The Saudi Charge made clear that the primary goal of this Embassy is to repatriate 120,000 Rohingyas living without documents in Saudi Arabia for many years.  They had entered Saudi Arabia on Pakistan and Bangladesh passports, but those countries refused to renew them.  Charge asked if he realized that sending them back would effectively mean sending them to prison.  He acknowledged that the timing might not be right, but that the situation in Burma might improve in the future.When asked about the relatively small number of Rohingyas in comparison with other overseas workers in Saudi Arabia (he rattled off:  1 million each from Egypt and Pakistan, 900,000 from Indonesia, 400,000 from the Philippines), he replied

RANGOON 00000235  005.2 OF 005

that the others all had passports.

Burmese political activists in exile whom Charge met February
13:  After proudly describing their efforts to develop a
constitution in consultation with representatives of various
ethnic groups, Charge asked about the provisions they had
made for the Muslims of Northern Rakhine State.  The first
response:  they are not citizens.  They disputed Charge's
assertion that these people had been living in that area for
hundreds of years.  Finally they admitted to an agreement
with the Arakans (a Buddhist ethnic group inhabiting the rest
of Rakhine State), that the Muslims would not have the right
to a separate state, but that they would be accorded
individual rights.

COMMENT
¶ 14. (SBU) The Rohingyas are a small group of oppressed people
in a country full of many oppressed people.  The others have
received more attention because their plight has made it to
the international press.  The military has effectively sealed
the Rohingyas off from the world and keeps them at the bare
subsistence level-it is an internment camp.  The
international community, with the UNHCR in the lead, has
responded to enable these people to survive-just.  If
international donors disappeared, the fate of these people
would be far worse.  Their only hope for better lives is a
government willing to accord them basic rights of citizenship
and freedom.  The current government essentially acts as
prison guards.  We should not assume that any future
democratic government will accord these people their basic
human rights, but should insist on it.  In the meantime, we
should join other donors in providing humanitarian assistance
to the Rohingyas and send the message to the military that we
will not permit their elimination.  We also recommend support
for efforts by the Islamic Center in Rangoon to start an
English language program in Northern Rakhine State (reftel).
VILLAROSA


https://wikileaks.org/cable/2006/02/06RANGOON248.html

Saya mempertanyakan tanggal yang di tebalkan. 2016???

Berarti wikileaks bisa error juga  ^-^
GKBU
 
_/\_ suvatthi hotu


- finire -

Offline kullatiro

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Saya mempertanyakan tanggal yang di tebalkan. 2016???

Berarti wikileaks bisa error juga  ^-^

tanggal kabel 2006-02-22 09:02

Offline Kelana

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tanggal kabel 2006-02-22 09:02

Lalu yang ditebalkan tanggal apa ya??
GKBU
 
_/\_ suvatthi hotu


- finire -

Offline Kelana

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Secara Akademis Tidak ada yang disebut Rohingya sebagai Etnis
« Reply #9 on: 04 June 2015, 02:26:21 PM »
International delegates at a seminar on the history of Rakhine State were told on Saturday that there are no Rohingya people in Myanmar - and that these people were actually Bengali. The seminar took place at Mahidol University.


"The seminar was held with three objectives - introduction of Rakhine history to the international community, to correct a continued description of Rohingya by international media that is not recognised by successive Myanmar governments, and to bring reliable references of Rakhine history from international historians," said Kyaw Thaung, one of the seminar's organisers.

Dr Jet Pilder, an expert on Asian Studies from France, explained the origins of the Arakan kingdom, Bodaw Phaya's occupation of Arakan and the political, religious and economic history of the area from 1785 to 1825: Members of Rakhine's elite were sent into exile between 1785 and 1795 and the administration was jointly controlled by Myanmar and Rakhine. Increased tax was collected and forced labour was seen from 1795 to 1810, when Myanmar people also began to settle in the area. A rebellion against the rule of Myanmar's king from 1787 to 1815 saw Rakhine people head to southern Bengala.

Similarly, Professor Stephen van Galen of Germany's Leiden University briefed on relations between the Rakhine region and Bengal from the 15th century to 18th century.

After 1638, Rakhine's control over southeastern Bengal waned due to a shortfall in tax revenue. And Rakhine's economy stagnated after Chittagong was lost in 1666, he added.

He also cited another reason for the impact on Rakhine's economy - the withdrawal of Dutch businessmen.

Meanwhile, history Professor Aye Chan of Kanda University of International Studies, Japan, traced the increased cross-border settlement from 1826 to 1975 as Chittagong natives moved in to become the majority in Maungdaw and Buthedaung townships. In his talk "From Rakhine cross-border settlement to ethnic violence", Chan said the Bengali Muslim population increased from 58,255 in 1871 to 178,647 in 1911, when they represented 94 per cent of the population in Maungdaw and 84 per cent in Buthedaun. He also explained Muslim rebels' destruction of Rakhine villages.

"What I can say exactly is that those who call themselves Rohingyas are really Bengalis. This can be seen in the records of the colonial era. Rakhine State has no Rohingyas," Chan said.

Pilder, when asked about the annexation of Rakhine State in the Bagan period, replied that there was no evidence it ever occurred.

"I never come across the term 'Rohingya'. But Muslims settlers arrived in Mrauk-U around 17th century. They did not name themselves as Rohingyas then. Other cultures also reached Mrauk-U in that century. The first Dutchman arrived in Mrauk-U in 1608."

Chan also responded to a question about the term "Rohingya".

"I have talked about this before. A man named Abdul Gaffa from Buthedaung, Rakhine State, created [the term Rohingya] in 1951. Actually he made it up from the name 'Roshang' or 'Rohan'. It's a Bengali word meaning Rakhine people."

When a Bengali activist Htay Lwin Oo asked about Rohingya and the Rakhine State, Chan said the term "Rohan" does not mean illegal immigrants."

Professors of history, diplomats, reporters and journalists attended the seminar, which also attracted more than 150 Rakhine Buddhist monks and students studying in Thailand.

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Offline Kelana

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Permulaan Konflik Rakhine
« Reply #10 on: 04 June 2015, 02:37:48 PM »
Permulaan konflik etnis di rakhine

http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-801578
« Last Edit: 04 June 2015, 02:52:53 PM by Kelana »
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