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Rohingya Muslims face further hardship during Ramadan

By Shahana Butt
July 7, 2014

Sectarian violence in Myanmar has forced thousands of displaced Rohingya Muslim refugees to leave their homeland and come to Jammu region of the Indian controlled Kashmir.

The refugees mostly fled the Buddhist majority State of Rakhein after authourities failed to stop attacks by extrimist Buddhists. Security forces in Myanmar were at some points accused of involvement in the attacks. The Rohyngya refugees in Indian controlled Kashmir are now living in make-shift tents on government land and fear possible evacuation. India is not a signatory to the United Nations convention on the status of refugees.

There is therefore no law that deals with foreign refugees, and the government decides whether or not to grant the Rohingyas refugee status on a case-by-case basis. And as the fasting month of Ramadan has started in hot summer, this Muslim community is dealing with tougher challenges. It’s not just the umployment, the refugees are denied access to health-care and education even in India. According to the United Nations, the Rohingya are one of the world's most persecuted minorities. They have long been grappling with similar problems, yet international humanitarian organizations have not done much for them and their living conditions are deteriorating. 

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