Rohingya Activists In Japan Appealed US Government To Intervene To Stop Killing Rohingyas In Maungdaw
|(Photo: Ye Aung Thu/AFP)|
October 22, 2016
Tokyo, Japan -- Rohingya human rights activists in Japan visited the US Embassy in Tokyo on October 20th, 2016th at 3pm to appeal to the US government for their urgent intervention in helping to stop Myanmar military’s extrajudicial killing of innocent Rohingya men, women and children indiscriminately since the 9th of October in northern Arakan, where unidentified assailants attacked Myanmar security forces.
The activists were received by Secretary for Political section Mr Van Deusen and Senior Political Advisor Mrs Kikushi Shinobu. The meeting lasted for an hour and they discussed several issues including October 9th attacks in Kyi Gan Pyin, Ngakura, and Kodankauk in Rathedaung, Myanmar military’s indiscriminate killing of Rohingya men, women and even the children since then. They also discussed torching Rohingya villages to push Rohingyas to IDPs camps, looting Rohingyas’ houses and shops, other valuable things together with Natala villagers, mass arrest of Rohingya inhumanely torturing, sexually assaulting the Rohingya women, hiding dead bodies in the mass graves, blocking food, medicine and other essentials to make Rohingya die.
The activists lead by Zaw Min Htut presented an appeal letter for Secretary for State, John Kerry detailing all above the issues. The Embassy officials promised to relay all information directly to the State Department officials urgently.
The letter is here:
The Honorable John F. Kerry,
Secretary of State.
The State Department
United State Of America
20th October 2016.
I would like to raise the grave situation of the Rohingya people in the Northern Arakan State into your kind attention.
Some unidentified assailants launched early morning attacks on three security forces posts in Maungdaw and Rathedaung townships on 9th October, according to information released by the Myanmar Government. We, Rohingya people strongly condemn violence at all cost and oppose any violence on anyone whilst pursuing a peaceful solution for the plight of Rohingya. Rohingya community is not capable of targeting the security forces, given the extremely restrictive environment they live in Rakhine State.
Since 9thOctober, under the pretext of looking for attackers, the Myanmar military and police forces have been indiscriminately killing the Rohingya, torching and plundering their homes and villages. Two mass graves were found and over 100 innocent Rohingya were extra- judicially killed that included old men, women and children .One of my second Cousins was shot dead by military on 12th October. At least 15 Rohingya villages were set ablaze destroying many houses including my family house and Mosques. The Myanmar military forces together with the local Rakhines are looting Rohingya houses and shops. At the same time several local people are reporting that their women are sexually assaulted by the military forces. Several hundreds innocent Rohingya have been arrested and severely torturing.
The grave situation has caused many Rohingya to flee their villages. Several Thousands of Rohingya have been internally displaced causing great humanitarian disaster. Due to curfew order and blockade imposed on only Rohingya there is an acute shortage of Food, Medicine and other essentials. The situation is exponentially worsening.
The fear on the ground is that the violence may now escalate to at least the level of 2012, when hundreds were killed, several villages had been burnt down , over 1,40,000 were displaced to IDP Camps and many more Rohingya were driven out of the country altogether. This new upsurge of violence may ultimately prove to be the final trigger to outright genocide that the UN and many NGO observers as well as genocide scholars have been dreading.
The only thing that can stop the spiraling levels of violence from escalating into a full blown latter-day Rwanda scenario would be the intervention of United States together the government of Daw Aung San Suu Kyi to pacify Rakhine and impose the rule of law effectively. But as of yet, the Myanmar Government is making no efforts to protect Rohingya civilians and Daw Aung San Suu Kyi does not seem to be moved by the gravity of the situation while military is taking the law in their hands.
You are in a uniquely privileged position to help build the international pressure needed to move Daw Aung San Suu Kyi and her government to suppress the recent upsurge in violence before the situation get completely out of control. I solemnly urge you to take charge of this issue and help prevent yet another international humanitarian catastrophe.
I humbly appeal to your Excellency to save Rohingya from total annihilation. Rohingya are peace-loving people believing peaceful co-existence with equal rights and dignity. Rohingya men, women and children are looking at you for their salvation.
Zaw Min Htut.
Rohingya Human Rights Activist in Japan.