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RB News
August 31, 2017

We are today into the seventh day of the Myanmar military's full blown offensives on the Rohingya population across Northern Arakan. What we have been witnessing since August 25 are widespread arson attacks on Rohingya villages, horrific massacres and summary executions of countless (Rohingya) civilians, massive displacements and unimaginable horrors of atrocity crimes.

Below are the reports we have received so far on the fourth day (August 31, 2017).

1- 12:30pm 31/8/2017: Over 120 Rohingya houses have been burnt down by Myanmar military at 'Tharay Kone Tan' village in Southern Maungdaw.

The Myanmar military are still continuing to carry out arson attacks in the village.

2- 31/8/2017: Gruesome scenes of Rohingya civilians massacred by Myanmar troops at 'Guta Pyin' in Buthidaung on August 26 and August 27. Exact figures of Rohingya civilians massacred by the Myanmar military in the village are yet to be counted.


3- 1pm 31/8/2017: Myanmar military shot 3 Hindu men to death at 3-mile-area in Maungdaw by mistaking them after Rohingya men on August 27.

In a similar circumstance, Maungdaw police shot 3 other Hindu men to death in the downtown on August 28. Family members of the missing men lodged police complaints and later came to know those shot dead were their family members. Upon so, the Police provided them some money and forced them to say their family members were killed by the Rohingya people. 

When investigated, other local Hindus found out that they were actually killed by the Maungdaw Police, revealed an internal source from a Hindu community in Maungdaw.

4- 1pm 31/8/2017: Myanmar authorities have spread rumors that Rohingya villagers are plotting to attack their co-villagers i.e. a Hindu community at 'Hla Thar' hamlet of 'Myo Oo' (Italia) village in Maungdaw.

Now, approximately 100 Myanmar security forces besieged the village on pretext of protecting Hindu people. Myanmar authorities are reported to have been attempting to trigger communal clash between Hindu and Rohingya. They are attempting to use the peaceful Hindu community for their own selfish political ends.

5- 5pm 31/8/2017: 'Aan Daang' (Inn Din) village in Southern Maungdaw has been almost entirely razed by Myanmar military and Rakhine extremists. Now, they are setting fire on the Central Mosque at the nearby village, 'Thin Baw Kwe' (Bossara), in Southern Maungdaw.

To be updated as news breaks....

[Reported by RB Correspondents in Northern Arakan; Edited by M.S. Anwar]

Please email at: to send your reports and feedback.

Ro Mayyu Ali
RB News
August 31, 2017

Tha Win Chaung is the last village in southern Maungdaw. It has five hamlets such as Bosara, Kwa Sone, Surali, Ywa Thit and Pu Taung, consisting the total population of over 10100 and 900 households. It is quite close to Rathidaung's Koe Tan Kauk (IDP camp) and Chain Khali village. 

On 25 of August, the fresh holocaust of Myanmar Armed Forces coordination of local Rakhine extremists on Chain Khali and Koe Tan Kauk Rohingya villagers derived the result of 123 Rohingyas were killed, 800 houses were burnt down and 14000 were evacuated to nearby hill. Without food and water, the escapees had to pass a couple of days in there. Taking the souls on hands, the frantic escapees moved through the hill to Tha Win Chaung village to refuge in. 

On 27 of August, the night, with a plate of rice was a seventh heaven of delights for Chain Khali and Koe Tan Kauk escapees in Tha Win Chaung village. However, seeing the smoky sky around Chain Khali and encountering the misery and plight of the escapees, the Tha Win Chaung's Rohingya villagers feel so desperate for their life. Could the holocaust resume again on Tha Win Chaung's villagers? 

At night 4:30 am, the 56-years-old Mubena from Kwa Sone died with heart-fail in fear and trauma. It was the pain and condolence on the wound of the family. With a hope for a small funeral in next morning, they passed their night. 

Shahanas, 22 years from the same hamlet delivered a new-born baby at home. For Rohingya women in Northern Rakhine State, it is not wonder the home-delivery without a nurse or a professional assistant. But as a husband, Mohammed Yahayu often worries for his family with a new-born baby and lactating woman. That night, he raced with fear and worry rather than the excitement of having a new baby. The night was so dark in monsoon. It was too long for them to pass. 

And the night was sinking into the dawn. The condoling family prepared a small funeral. And the dead was on the shoulders of four men taking to nearby cemetery to burry down. Yahayu, the father of new-born baby was struggling to think of the situation. A burden of worries flooded on his mind. 

It was 8:05 am in the morning. A very heavy explosive made the four-men extremely shock carrying the dead. It was a launcher hit to a quite close home to the men. In fear and shock, the men dropped down the carrier of the dead and escaped away. Soon, the army fired launchers and machine-guns continuously. It was not only in Kwa Sone but the entire village, one hamlet after another. 

Tha Win Chaung's villagers learnt from Chain Khali's Rohingyas about the holocaust during that last night. Thus all villagers escaped to nearby hill with what they found around of them at home. So, what could be the choice for those escapees whose houses were already burnt down in Chain Khali and Koe Tan Kauk? At least, they could save their life escaping with Tha Win Chaung's villagers to the hill. 

For Yahayu, as a father with two children including a new-born one, it was the rivers of sweat streamed down on his face escaping to the hill together with his one-night-passed lactating wife. However they could reach alive to hill in fatigue. 

During the last hour of the noon, the fire was ceased incinerating almost houses of 900 in entire village. But the launchers of Myanmar Armed Forces were not stopped. Now, the direction of their launchers turned to East hamlet including the market of Inn Din Village. So for the villagers, there is no second option except escaping to the hill if it is nearby. 

Since 25 of August, the entire villagers from Chain Khali, Koe Tan Kauk, Tha Win Chaung and Inn Din have been in the hill around by. It was a moment for them even a parent has no chance to snatch his own child. How can they take a bag of rice together to eat for some days in hill? 

It has been already 6 days and 7 nights, the escapees have to face starving in there. When it rains, children are dishelved and old are frantic. "Now for us, going to die is the only option in there" says Shahanas, the 22-years-old lactating woman. "How can I breastfeed my new-born baby if I cannot eat for three days" she slaps herself to her forehead. 

Within the day, Myanmar Armed Forces coordinating with Rakhine extremists have burnt down over 900 houses, killed 5 and injured 15 and displaced 5100 villagers in Tha Win Chaung and 750 houses, killed 19, injured 40 and displaced 8500 villagers in Inn Din. On 31 of August, around 10 am in the morning, the forces again started to burn down the remained hamlets such as Ywa Ma and West in Inn Din. Now, the almost houses of around 750 in Inn Din have been burnt down and estimation of 8500 villagers have been evacuated to hill. 

Around the hill in Tha Win Chaung and Inn Din, now there are more than 18600 escapees from Tha Win Chaung and Inn Din plus 14000 escapees from Rathidaung's Chain Khali and Koe Tan Kauk have been suffering hunger and thirst since 28 of August. Still the systematic violence of Myanmar Armed Forces is going on intensively across the Rohingya villagers in Northern Rakhine State. It seems no bound of cease for this while. Coming down into their villages is elusive. 

How many more days those over 36200 displaced Rohingyas would have to face such severe humanitarian crisis in the hill around the southern part of Maungdaw Township? Nothing from International Community seems somewhat hopeful for them yet. Indeed, what is happening now on Rohingyas in Northern Rakhine State is most likely the world's most silent genocide ever.

August 30, 2017

Turkey's president discusses violence in Myanmar in phone call with UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres

ANKARA -- President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Wednesday urged UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres to put pressure on Myanmar’s government over violence in Rakhine state which has reportedly displaced or killed thousands of Rohingya Muslims.

Turkish presidential sources said Erdogan held a phone call with Guterres on the humanitarian situation in Myanmar.

Erdogan stressed the “vital importance” of urgent intervention by the UN and the international community to stop the crisis, the source said.

The Turkish leader also said it was “unacceptable” that the Myanmar security forces attack innocent Rohingya Muslims or use disproportionate force against civilians.

Erdogan also said Turkey was providing humanitarian aid and was ready to provide further assistance in the region.

He added that Turkey was also in contact with organizations such as United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, the Organization of Islamic Cooperation and relevant countries such as the U.S., Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand and Bangladesh.

Guterres thanked Erdogan for his sensitivity on the issue and gave information about ongoing work and contacts established in order to end the humanitarian crisis in Myanmar.

Erdogan and Guterres agreed to stay in touch to cooperate in resolving the crisis.

Deadly attacks on border posts in western Myanmar's Rakhine state broke out on Friday. Later, media reports emerged saying Myanmar security forces used disproportionate force and displaced thousands of Rohingya villagers, destroying homes with mortars and machine guns.

*Reporting by Ilkay Guder; Writing by Meryem Goktas

By Erric Permana
August 30, 2017

Myanmar must 'avoid civilian casualties amid the violence', says Retno Marsudi

JAKARTA, Indonesia -- Indonesian Foreign Minister Retno Marsudi spoke to Myanmar’s National Security Adviser U Thaung Tun on Tuesday, to discuss the disproportionate use of force by Myanmar security forces in Rakhine state which had reportedly displaced thousands of Rohingya Muslims.

During a news conference at Jakarta's state palace on Tuesday Marsudi said that she spoke with U Thaung Tun on the phone about developments in Rakhine state.

Marsudi said she had asked Myanmar to "avoid civilian casualties amid the violence" and to provide protection to the Rohingya community.

"This security protection is a humanitarian concern; it has to include the people of Rakhine state," she said.

"I highlighted that Indonesia remains committed to providing help and assistance to the Myanmar government to ease the situation or help build a conducive Rakhine state," she added.

Marsudi also said she contacted the Indonesian embassy in Yangon, stating that the National Security Adviser will brief the Indonesian ambassador.

Additionally Marsudi said that she had also contacted Bangladesh’s foreign minister to discuss Bangladesh’s recent refusal to accept Rohingya refugees.

Deadly attacks on border posts in western Myanmar's Rakhine state broke out on Friday, resulting in mass civilian casualties.

Later, media reports emerged saying Myanmar security forces used disproportionate force and displaced thousands of Rohingya villagers, destroying homes with mortars and machine guns.

August 30, 2017

Refugee flow gathers pace amid renewed fighting as the international community expresses concern for civilian safety.

At least 18,500 Rohingya Muslims, many sick and some with bullet wounds, have fled into Bangladesh over the past six days amid renewed fighting in western Myanmar.

The figures from the International Organization for Migration (IOM) on Wednesday came amid increasing concerns by the international community.

Foreign governments and organisations fear Rohingya villages are being subject to collective punishment after an armed group on August 5 attacked police posts and an army base in Rakhine state.

The attacks - in which at least 110 were killed - were claimed by the Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (ARSA), a group which was formed by Rohingya living in Saudi Arabia after a bout of serious communal violence in 2012, according to the International Crisis Group.

In the days following the attacks, the Myanmar army has burned down areas of Rakhine state and fired on civilians, according to rights groups and witnesses.

Scores have reportedly been killed. Al Jazeera has been unable to verify the death tolls.

While Rohingya Muslims have largely fled to Bangladesh, Rakhine Buddhists have mostly sought sanctuary in towns and monasteries to the south and east of the fighting.

"As of last night, 18,500 people have come across" from Myanmar's Rakhine state, Chris Lom, the IOM's Asia-Pacific spokesman, told the AFP news agency.

Lom said exact figures were difficult to obtain because many of those who have made it into Bangladesh might not register with local authorities.

"We also know there are people stuck at the border but we do not know how many," Lom said.

Bangladesh, which already hosts some 400,000 Rohingya who have fled Myanmar over the years, has vowed to block new arrivals and has deported some of those it has caught trying to make the crossing.

"They are in a very, very desperate condition," said Sanjukta Sahany, who runs the IOM office in the southern town of Cox's Bazar near the border.

"The biggest needs are food, health services and they need shelter. They need at least some cover, some roofs over their heads."

Sahany said many crossed "with bullet injuries and burn injuries," and that aid workers reported that some refugees "gave a blank look" when questioned.

"People are traumatised, which is quite visible."

The UN, while condemning the attacks by ARSA, has pressured Myanmar to protect civilian lives without discrimination and appealed to Bangladesh to admit those fleeing the military counteroffensive.

Northern Rakhine has been under lockdown since October last year when a previously unknown group of Rohingya fighters ambushed a series of border posts inside Myanmar.

That prompted a massive military response, leading to some 87,000 Rohingya fleeing to Bangladesh, bringing with them harrowing tales of murder, rape and burned villages.

Fires burning

The UN believes the Myanmar government's response to the crisis may amount to ethnic cleansing and crimes against humanity.

Satellite data recently accessed by Human Rights Watch show widespread fires burning in at least 10 areas in Rakhine.

Myanmar authorities say Rohingya "extremist terrorists" have been setting the fires during fighting with government troops, while Rohingya have blamed soldiers who have been accused of carrying out extrajudicial killings.

By Rashvinjeet S. Bedi & M. Kumar
August 30, 2017

KUALA LUMPUR: An Islamic non-governmental organisation has called on the Government to expel all Myanmar nationals from the country if the violence against the Rohingya people there does not stop.

In the face of fresh violence against the Rohingya community, the Malaysian Consultative Council of Islam Organisations (Mapim) said such atrocities could no longer be tolerated.

"You have nothing to do with us and you must go back. We are not going to have problems without you here. You don't have to be here," Mapim president Mohd Azmi Abdul Hamid said after handing a memorandum to the Myanmar embassy here on Wednesday morning.

There was heavy police presence around the embassy after protesters gathered at Ampang Park at around 11am to demonstrate against the treatment of the Rohingya people by the Myanmar government.

The Rohingya were not allowed near the embassy, with a number of them seen congregating at the Ampang Park LRT and Tabung Haji building here.

A representative from the embassy received the memorandum and the group dispersed about two hours later, although several were arrested after they allegedly became unruly.

Dang Wangi OCPD Asst Comm Mohd Sukri Kaman confirmed the arrests, saying that some of the protesters started hitting passing vehicles, and caused massive traffic jams in the area.

"I do not have the exact number of arrests at the moment but several were arrested," he said after the rally.

ACP Mohd Sukri said police also arrested several protesters who did not have proper travel documents.

Considered to be stateless and often subjected to arbitrary violence and forced labour in Myanmar, the Rohingya are considered by the United Nations as one of the most persecuted minorities in the world.

As of June this year, there were 59,100 Rohingya refugees registered with the UNHCR in Malaysia, although unofficial estimates are considerably higher.

"It's not only affecting the Rohingya, it's affecting the whole of Myanmar. We want a peaceful region. We want a peaceful country. We want to have a good relationship," said Mohd Azmi.

He said that Myanmar leader Aung San Suu Kyi was also to be blamed for the atrocities and called for her Nobel Peace Prize to be revoked.

"You are now the culprit. You are with the military. You are responsible… You ought to be ashamed of yourself.

"The Myanmar people stood up for you, for democratic and human rights, but now you have shown your true colours," he added.

Thousands of Rohingya, mainly women and children, have fled to Bangladesh since Friday (Reuters) 

RB News
August 30, 2017

We are today into the sixth day of the Myanmar military's full blown offensives on the Rohingya population across Northern Arakan. What we have been witnessing since August 25 are widespread arson attacks on Rohingya villages, horrific massacres and summary exceutions of countless (Rohingya) civilians, mass displacements and unimaginable horrors of atrocity crimes.

Below are the reports we have received so far on the fourth day (August 30, 2017).

1- 12:30pm 30/8/2017: Over 60,000 Rohingya villagers have been displaced under the 'Taung Bazaar' area alone in Northern Buthidaung. The Whole area was razed by the Myanmar military.

The 'Taung Bazaar' area is a huge area comprising at least a dozen of Rohingya villages. All of them were under arson attacks and entirely burnt down.

Displaced, rendered without food and shelter, they took refuge in the nearby mountains and now are trying to flee to Bangladesh. But it will take the people, comprising mainly women and children, 3 days to walk on foot to the Bangladesh-Myanmar border. Anything can happen to them on their way to the border.

2- 10:30am 30/8/2017: Over 400 Rohingya civilians were slaughtered and 100 others were wounded during arson attacks by the Myanmar military on 'Chut Pyin' village in Rathedaung Township on August 27. Exact figures could be more.

No medical access for the injured people, no place to take shelter, no food to eat, no safe place to sleep!

3- An INGO staff was also killed by the Myanmar military at 'Maung Nu' hamlet of 'Chin Thama' village in Buthidaung on Aug 26.

He is Dil Mohammed from 'Phaung Taw Pyin' village and a staff of Malteser International. He was slaughtered along with other over 100 people while taking refuge at the 'Maung Nu' hamlet on August 26.

4- 10am 30/8/2017: 'Kyauk Hle Kar' village in northern Maungdaw has been set ablaze by the Myanmar military and the Rakhine extremists. 

5- 11am 30/8/2017: The Rohingya residents of 'Mangala' hamlet of Quarter 3in the downtown of Maungdaw were expelled from their homes and the were set ablaze by the Myanmar military and the Rakhine extremists afterwards.

6- 11:30am 30/8/2017: 'Maung Nama' village in Northern Maungdaw has been set ablaze twice by Rakhine extremists and Myanmar military.

7- 11am 30/8/2017: Myanmar military carried out arson attacks and set fire on 'Foki Taung' hamlet of 'Lon Doong' village in Northern Maungdaw.

8- 4pm 30/8/2017: Gun-shots are being heard from the region of Quarter 5 in Maungdaw downtown again, nearby villagers report.

9- 10pm 30/8/2017: "More than 200 Rohingya civilians were murdered in an incident of chilling summary execution staged by Myanmar military and Rakhine extremists at 'Padaka Dewan Ali' village in Northern Maungdaw today.

4 hamlets of the village were burnt down by Myanmar military and Rakhine extremists on August 29. Therefore, around 1,000 displaced villagers gathered at a plain and passed their night.

Today, more 200 of them including old, children and women alike got their throats slit and massacred by Myanmar military and Rakhine extremists," a survivor recounted.

10- 10pm 30/8/2017: 2 hamlets, 'Montullah' and 'Attet Kan Paing', at 'Alay Than Kyaw' village in Southern Maungdaw have been set ablaze by Myanmar military.

To be updated as news breaks....

[Reported by RB Correspondents in Northern Arakan; Edited by M.S. Anwar]

Please email at: to send your reports and feedback.

Ayesha Begum joined the exodus of Rohingya fleeing troubled Rakhine state in recent days as fresh violence erupted between Myanmar's security forces and militants fighting for the stateless Muslim minority (AFP Photo/Rehman Asad)

August 29, 2017

Cox's Bazar (Bangladesh) - Heavily pregnant and confined to a squalid Bangladeshi refugee camp, Ayesha Begum does not regret that her husband will miss the imminent birth of their sixth child as he fights alongside Rohingya militants in Myanmar.

Begum, 25, joined the exodus of Rohingya fleeing troubled Rakhine State in recent days as fresh violence erupted between Myanmar's security forces and militants fighting for the stateless Muslim minority.

But like many, her husband stayed behind in Myanmar to join the growing ranks of Rohingya men answering the call to arms against security forces, say relatives and community leaders.

"He took us to the river and sent us across," Begum told AFP in Kutupalong camp, describing crossing the Naf River by boat with her children into Bangladesh.

"He bid us farewell, saying if I live he'd see us soon in a free Arakan (Rakhine state) or else we'll meet in heaven," she added, breaking down in tears.

The Rohingya largely eschewed violence despite years of suffocating restrictions and persecution.

That dramatically changed last October when a nascent Rohingya militant group launched surprise attacks on border posts.

Myanmar's military reacted with a violent "clearance operation" to sweep out the militants. The UN says that crackdown could have amounted to ethnic cleansing.

Despite the sweeps, violence continued as remote villages were hit by near-daily killings of perceived state collaborators attributed to operatives of the Arakan Rohingya Solidarity Army (ARSA).

The militants struck again on a large scale on Friday, with scores attacking around 30 police posts in pre-dawn raids, killing at least a dozen security force members using knives, homemade explosives and some guns.

This time the security response has seen more than 100 people, including some 80 militants, confirmed killed and prodded thousands of Rohingya civilians to dash for Bangladesh.

But the country, which already hosts tens of thousands of refugees from the Muslim minority in the Cox's Bazar area, has refused entry to any more.

Those unable to sneak in are stranded along the "zero line" border zone, where Bangladeshi officials have noticed a conspicuous absence of men among the civilians crowding the checkposts.

"We asked them what happened to their men. They said they all stayed back to fight," a Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB) commander told AFP, speaking on condition of anonymity.

- 'Fight or die' -

At the border Rohingya elder Shah Alam, a community leader from Rakhine state, said 30 young men from three villages in his district joined ARSA "for our freedom".

"Do they have any other choice? They chose to fight and die rather than be slaughtered like sheep," he told AFP.

The previously unknown militant group has claimed responsibility for the attacks in October and more recent strikes against Myanmar's security forces, urging fellow Rohingya to join the fight.

Myanmar's Aung San Suu Kyi has accused the group of atrocities including using child soldiers, allegations the militants deny.

The government department directly run by Suu Kyi -- the State Counsellor's Office -- has classified the ARSA as "terrorists" and released a flurry of statements and grim pictures of civilians allegedly shot dead by militants.

But ARSA's rallying cry is being answered in Rohingya camps across Bangladesh, despite some doubts over whether their rag-tag units -- seemingly mainly armed with knives and homemade weapons -- can defeat Myanmar troops.

But one young rebel told AFP his Rohingya comrades were determined to fight on, despite the odds.

"There are hundreds of us hiding in the hills. We took an oath to save Arakan, even if it is with sticks and small knives," said the rebel, who declined to give his name, near the border in Bangladesh.

Many of those Rohingya displaced by the violence say they barely escaped with their lives.

They describe Buddhist mobs and security forces shooting unarmed civilians and burning down homes, an abuse repeatedly documented in Rakhine since the upswing in conflict.

For many, it was the final straw.

"Young people are fed up," said one prominent Rohingya activist in Bangladesh who asked to remain anonymous.

"They grew up witnessing humiliation and persecution, so the current consensus among the Rohingya community is unless you fight, they're not going to give us any of our rights."

Outside a camp in Cox's Bazar two young Rohingya men were anxious to join the fight, describing it as "farj" -- a religious duty -- to join the "freedom fighters" in Rakhine.

"We don't have any options. Our backs are on the wall. Even the teenagers in our villagers have joined the fight," one of the men told AFP, vowing "to cross the border on the first chance".

Just one of Hafeza Khatun's three sons crossed with her into Bangladesh last month, the older two staying back to fight.

But her youngest joined them a week later at his mother's blessing, returning to battle Myanmar's security forces "who would kill us anyway" without resistance, she said.

"They are fighting for our rights. I sent my sons to fight for independence. I sacrificed them for Arakan," she told AFP.

Britain's Ambassador to the United Nations Matthew Rycroft delivers remarks during the Security Council meeting on the situation in Syria at the United Nations Headquarters, in New York, U.S. April 7, 2017. (Photo: Stephanie Keith)

August 29, 2017

UNITED NATIONS  -- Britain has asked for the U.N. Security Council to meet on Wednesday to discuss escalating deadly violence between Rohingya insurgents and Myanmar security forces in Rakhine state, Britain’s U.N. Ambassador Matthew Rycroft said on Tuesday. 

“Need to address long-term issues in Rakhine, urge restraint by all parties,” Rycroft posted on Twitter. 

A series of coordinated attacks by Rohingya insurgents on security forces in the north of Myanmar’s Rakhine state on Friday has triggered a fresh exodus to Bangladesh of Rohingya Muslim villagers trying to escape the violence. 

Reporting by Michelle Nichols; Editing by Chris Reese

Rohingya children cross the Bangladesh-Myanmar border fence as they try to enter Bangladesh in Bandarban, an area under Cox's Bazar authority, Bangladesh, August 29, 2017. (Photo: Mohammad Ponir Hossain)

By Ruma Paul and Nurul Islam
August 29, 2017

COX’S BAZAR, Bangladesh  -- Rohingya Muslims fleeing to Bangladesh from escalating violence in Myanmar face the growing danger of sickness and attempts by the Bangladesh authorities to send them home, despite a United Nations plea that they be allowed to seek shelter.

A series of coordinated attacks by Rohingya insurgents on security forces in the north of Myanmar’s Rakhine state on Friday has triggered a fresh exodus to Bangladesh of Muslim villagers trying to escape the violence.

At least 109 people have been killed in the clashes in Myanmar, according to the government, most of them militants but including members of the security forces and civilians.

The United Nations Security Council will meet behind closed doors on Wednesday, at the request of Britain, to discuss the situation in Myanmar.

Bangladesh border guards told Reuters they had sent about 550 Rohingya back across the Naf river that separates the two countries since Monday, despite an appeal by U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres for Dhaka to allow Rohingya to seek safety.

Border patrols were also trying to block people from crossing the frontier.

The treatment of about 1.1 million Muslim Rohingya in Myanmar has become the biggest challenge for national leader Aung San Suu Kyi, who has been accused by Western critics of not speaking out on behalf of a minority who have long complained of persecution.

The Rohingya are denied citizenship in Myanmar and classified as illegal immigrants, despite claiming roots there that go back centuries.

The violence marks a dramatic escalation of a conflict that has simmered since October, when a similar, but much smaller, series of Rohingya attacks on security posts prompted a fierce military response dogged by allegations of human rights abuses.

The top U.N. human rights official, Zeid Ra’ad al-Hussein, called on Myanmar on Tuesday to ensure its security forces refrained from using disproportionate force, adding that the political leadership had a duty to protect all civilians “without discrimination”.

“This turn of events is deplorable. It was predicted and could have been prevented,” he said.

Myanmar’s National Security Adviser Thaung Tun said at a news conference that Myanmar had come under attack and had the full right to defend itself. He added that “security personnel have been instructed to make sure that innocent civilians are not harmed”.


Bangladesh is already host to more than 400,000 Rohingya refugees who have fled Buddhist-majority Myanmar since the early 1990s. Dhaka has asked the U.N. to pressure Myanmar over its treatment of the Muslim minority, insisting it cannot accept any more.

Still, more than 8,700 have registered in Bangladesh since Friday, the U.N. said.

A Rohingya man carrying his belongings approaches the Bangladesh-Myanmar border in Bandarban, an area under Cox's Bazar authority, Bangladesh, August 29, 2017. (Photo: Mohammad Ponir Hossain)

Hundreds of new arrivals milled around the entrance of the Kutapalong makeshift camp, the biggest unofficial refugee camp on the Bangladesh side of the border. Village elders said many of the Muslim hamlets near the border were empty, and said troops and ethnic Rakhine Buddhists had set fire to homes.

Around another 4,000 people were stranded in the no man’s land between the two countries near Taung Bro village, where temporary shelters stretched for several hundred meters on a narrow strip between the Naf river and Myanmar’s border fence.

Reuters reporters saw women, some carrying children and the sick, fording the river, which at that location is less than 10 meters wide. Bangladeshi border guards permitted about half a dozen people at a time to cross to access a pile of donated medicines.

“We came here out of fear for our lives, but we can’t cross. So we don’t know what to do,” said Aung Myaing, from Taung Bro Let Way village, standing knee-deep in the river.

When asked about insurgents he said: “We didn’t see them, we have no relation to them. But Myanmar doesn’t distinguish between the terrorists and civilians. They are hunting all the Rohingya.”

Many Rohingya trying to enter Bangladesh were sick and at least six have died after making the crossing, an aid worker said, adding that fear of being caught and sent back meant some refused to seek help.


An army source in Rakhine told Reuters that troops were hunting down insurgents across the region, clearing landmines and evacuating non-Muslims and government staff.

The government continued a mass evacuation of thousands of ethnic Rakhine Buddhists from the area, where they are a minority, to larger towns, police stations and army bases.

“All the people want to follow the army to get out of here. We have no cooking oil, we have no vegetables, we only have rice and people are in poor health,” Maung Thein Hla, a Rakhine resident stranded in the village of Taman Thar, told Reuters.

Satellite imagery analyzed by New York-based Human Rights Watch showed widespread burnings in at least 10 areas in northern Rakhine since the Friday raids, the group said. 

Home Affairs Minister General Kyaw Swe said construction materials imported by international aid groups to northern Rakhine, such as steel pipes, have been used by insurgents to make weapons. 

"We have found out that those things were used in handmade mines and handmade cartridges when it got to extremists and (were used to) attack our security forces," said Kyaw Swe at a news conference. 

The U.N. and international aid groups evacuated all "non-critical" staff out of the area after Suu Kyi's office repeatedly published pictures of World Food Programme energy biscuits allegedly found at an insurgent camp and after it said it was investigating aid groups support for the insurgents in one incident. 

The army source said the militants had produced a large number of landmines and were ambushing troops before quickly vanishing into the forests and mountains. 

"This is their region. Any village can be their base camp - any mosque can be their headquarters," he said. "We cannot distinguish who are insurgents or who are villagers." 

Reporting by Ruma Paul, Nurul Islam and Reuters staff; Writing by Krishna N. Das; Editing by Alex Richardson and Cynthia Osterman

A Rohingya woman urges the member of Border Guard Bangladesh not to turn them back to Myanmar, in Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh, 27 August 2017. Reuters/Mohammad Ponir Hossain

By Mike Woods
August 29, 2017

The United Nations cautioned Myanmar’s government on Tuesday against a heavy-handed response to last week’s attacks by a new Rohingya armed group, which provoked a crackdown that has once again highlighted the plight of the Muslim minority and thrown into question a series of UN recommendations meant to improve their conditions.

Some 6,000 people are held up at the border with Bangladesh as they flee repercussions of last week’s attacks on police outposts in Rakhine state, home to most of Myanmar’s 1.1 million Muslim Rohingya.

“The reports that we’re receiving from our Rohingya sources are that the military offensive against Rohingya areas, targeting villages, is escalating on a bigger scale than the military offensive in October last year,” says Mark Farmaner of the UK-based Burma Campaign.

He was referring to the crackdown that followed the first attacks of the Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (ARSA), which also claimed responsibility for the much larger assaults on police outposts that left at least 109 people dead late last week.

Myanmar's government calls the ARSA a terrorist group, while activists view it as emerging from long-held frustration.

“They are young angry Rohingya men who expected the international community to solve their problems, but seeing no action, they decided to take up arms,” says Europe-based Rohingya blogger Nay San Lwin, who rejects the terrorist label being applied to the group.

“There is no evidence they have committed any terrorist crime, so the government cannot call a group terrorist just for attacking government troops.”

Rohingya treatment

Despite being in Myanmar for decades or even centuries, the Rohingya have no status as citizens, and the government considers them to be Bengali immigrants.

Mark Farmaner notes the particular way the government has responded to the ARSA’s appearance, contrasting it with armed groups involved in other ethnic conflicts around the country.

“Until last year, the Rohingya were one of the few significant ethnic groups in the country that didn’t have an armed organisation claiming to advocate on their behalf and defend the people,” he notes.

“But while the government is now engaging with most of the armed ethnic organisations and trying to organise a peace process with them, its response to this Rohingya organisation has been completely different.

[…] There’s an almost hysterical response from the government to whip up anti-Rohingya fever in the country, playing on the prejudice against the Rohingya that already exists there.”

UN recommendations

The ARSA attack came the same day as a commission on the Rohingya situation led by former UN Secretary General Kofi Annan sent the government a list of recommendations that include promoting economic development, ensuring social justice and revisiting the question of citizenship.

“The report was issued the day the attacks happened, and the government welcomed it then,” notes the International Crisis Group’s Asia Programme Director Anagha Neelakantan, who believes the government should find it possible to take at least some of the recommendations on board.

“The commission might have been headed by Kofi Annan, who is very respected, but most of the members were from Myanmar, so this is a national body in some ways,” she says. “It should be in the government’s power to create the conditions in which to implement some of these recommendations.”

Nay San Lwin is less optimistic and doubts the government has any real intention of taking the recommendations to heart.

“The military launched this operation against the ARSA to provoke the situation, and the group claims it has no alternatives, because their bases were attacked by the military,” he argues. “The government is creating this situation so they don’t need to implement the plan.”

In any case, Anagha Neelakantan doubts the appearance of the armed group and crackdown will do anything to help the Rohingya cause.

“None of this is going to create much sympathy in Myanmar, where there’s already not much sympathy among the general public and among many politicians for the Rohingya cause,” she says..

“What it will do especially if the military response is very aggressive and targets civilians – is what the insurgents want, which is to keep international attention focussed on the situation in northern Rakhine and the Rohingyas, but not necessarily in a productive way.”

Date- 29th August 2017

Invitation- Protest against Mass Killings of Rohingya in Northern Arakan/Rakhine State, Burma/Myanmar

From 25th August Myanmar army and police forces have been carrying out indiscriminate killing of Rohingya civilians, torching and wholesale destruction of their homes and villages. More than 700 Rohingyas, mostly old men, women and children were massacred, and at least 18 Rohingya villages were burned down in the townships of Maungdaw, Buthidaung and Rathedaung in Rakhine State. As of Today at least 80,000 people are internally displaced causing a great humanitarian disaster. Due to curfew order, blockade and extensive destruction of foodstuff and essentials, there is an acute shortage of food, medicine, and other necessities. The situation is exponentially worsening.

The Rohingya Community in the UK is holding a demonstration in front of the Foreign & Common Wealth Office of the U.K. to urge the U.K. Government to put pressure on the Myanmar Government to stop this unprecedented campaign of terror and brutality, and to immediately discuss the issue in the UNSC. 

We would like to invite you to join with us and raise your voice to protect Rohingya lives in Arakan. Thank you so much.

Please show your solidarity with us. 

The demonstration will take place as follow;

Time: 14:00-15:00

Date: 30th August 2017 (Wednesday)

Place: Foreign & Commonwealth Office, King Charles Street, London, SW1A 2AH

Nearest Tube Station Westminster (District Line and Jubilee Line)

For more information please contact, Tun Khin +44 7888714866.

The follow interview was originally conducted and published in Burmese language by the Thazin Pan Khaine News Journal. Later, it was published by the media for reasons best known to them. Original link to the interview here:

By Aung Myint Thu (Man Aung)
Tazin Pann Khine, August 29, 2017

"We INGO are not fleeing from Maungdaw. If the government did not order us to return, we wish to stay there. No part of Rakhine is lost yet as people say it would be. There is no terrorist group as people say." 

Q- Andrew Kyleriley,  we saw that you guys were fleeing from Maungdaw. Can you let us know about the situation? 

Andrew - No! We were not fleeing. The government told us there we could not live, if not we wish to stay there. As people think, there is no terrorism. I think it has happened because of no human rights in there. 

Q- So, is not ARSA a terrorist?

A- ARSA says they have responsibility. They have already stated in social media. They have already told they attacked the police check posts. But they do not attack the civilians. 

Q- In last month, Myo ethnic people were killed. That day, Hindus were killed. Do you know that? 

A- I do not know. It could but very few be included during the attacks. 

Q- There are video files that ARSA collects the children and train them like to terrorize. Do you know that? 

A- I have not found that. I want to ask you is 'Why are you asking about the killing of those few people only'. There are many people have been killed from them. But you do not ask more about them. 

Q- That day, police check posts were attacked in the same. How do you think about that? 

A- Just around (30) police check posts. But there are many check posts. Now, around (30). ARSA takes the responsibility of attacking the check posts. They have no plan to attack the civilians. I totally disagree for any terrorism. But they are not terrorist group. 

Q- UN has been working for these issues by pitching up. Why does that group that says they are Rohingya become so popular in the world? Are they the most miserable human beings? 

A- Who suffers in Myanmar like them? I want to ask that question. Come to see. How they are friendly! They never make violences. Let's say about the boy who comes my office! He says there is no right of movement for him like Rakhine People. Moreover, no right for education. He says he does not know what he can. 

Q- Why are the indigenous people in Myanmar afraid of that terrorists? Do you think it is because of religion? 

A- Some could be of religion. However, they are not able to attend a good school like you. No good hospitals. No education. They are very miserable people. 

Q- Andrew, do you know that there are issues of many children giving birth? All say that a family has many children. 

A- That is their choice how many children they wish to give birth. That's human rights. They give birth as many as they wise. Is not that? 

Q- How do you think of new people coming from Bangladesh? 

A- Why do the people come from Bangladesh? How do they come to there where there are killing? No one comes from Bangladesh. 

Q- Andrew, it is heard that your America reduces the supports to UN. During this current American government. So, do you think Islamic countries support more to UN in that situation? 

A- American is continuously supporting. I did not hear that news. 

Tazin Pann Khine- Such thoughts are quite different with what Myanmar people think. So, we'll post it for Myanmar people how the ones like Andrew who work for INGO think about that. 

Andrew- Thank you. I have a thing to add. I totally disagree for any terrorism. But what is happening now in Rakhine is not like the terrorist group what the government say. 

# It is the interview with Andrew at Myay Ni Gone (Yangon) on 28 of August. The reason to start the interview is from seeing the banner of "No Human Rights for Terrorists", a collection for Rakhine Indigenous Victims . Andrew saw the texts in the banner and took pictures. And he told Tazin Pann Khine Journey that he does not agree with that and there are no terrorists in Rakhine. It is the facts of one-hour-long interview with him.

Translated by RB Team.

RB News
August 29, 2017

We are today into the fifth day of the Myanmar military's full blown offensives on the Rohingya population across Northern Arakan. What we have been witnessing since August 25 are widespread arson attacks on Rohingya villages, horrific massacres and summary excutions of (Rohingya) civilians and unimaginable horrors of countless atrocity crimes.

Below are the reports we have recieved so far on the fourth day (August 29, 2017).

1- 8:30am 29/8/2017: The Myanmar military carried out mass summary executions of 130 Rohingya men between the age of 10 and 90.l at 'Maung Nu' hamlet of 'Chin Thama' village in Buthidaung on 27th August 2017.

The dead bodies were taken away to their Battallion Base at the Chin Thama village after the summary executions. And More than 60 women were moslested and their jewelries and money were looted by the military.

2- 8am 29/8/2017: Myanmar military and Rakhine extremists continue to set fire on 'Koe Tan Kauk,' 'Tha Wan Chaung' & 'Inn Din' in Rathedaung.

Most Rohingya villages and communities have already been ethinically cleansed up by Myanmar army in Rathedaung Township. Yes, right before your eyes!

3- 8:30am 29/8/2017: Myanmar military have set fire on 'Zin Paing Nya' in Northern Maungdaw since this early morning. The Rohingya village still continues to flame!

4- 8:30am 29/8/2017: Rakhine extremists continue to threaten Rohingya residents at 'MyoOo' village, Quarter 2 and Quarter 3 in Maungdaw downtown that they will burn down their homes. The Rakhine extremists and Buddhist monks have been attempting to expel from their homes since last night.

The reason why the Rakhine extremists havent set fire on their homes yet seems these Rohingya homes are located mixed with Rakhine homes.

5- 10am 29/7/2017: The Myanmar military continue arson attacks on South hamlet of 'Kyi Kan Pyin' village in Northern Maungdaw.

6- 12:30pm 29/8/2017: Myanmar military and Rakhine began arson attacks on 'Tharay Kone Baung' Rohingya village in southern Maungdaw.

7- 1pm 29/8/2017: The Myanmar Government is evacuating only Rakhine civilians, not Rohingya villagers, from 3-mile-area in Maungdaw and transporting them to Buthidaung downtown.

The Rohingya villagers left behind are now extremely terrified of large-scale arson attacks and mass-killings by the Myanmar military.

8- 1:30pm 29/8/2017: 'Chein Khali' Rohingya hamlet of 'Alay Than Kyaw' village in Southern Maungdaw was set ablaze by the Myanmar military and Rakhine extremists.

9- 3pm 29/8/2017: During the arson attacks by Myanmar military on 'Myo Thu Gyi' village in Maungdaw,10 elderly Rohingya men were burnt to death


11- 5pm 29/8/2017: Summary Executions

Over 100 Rohingya children and women were slaughtered by the Myanmar military at 'Byu Ha Hmuu' in 'Alay Than Kyaw' in Southern Maungdaw.

12- 7pm 29/8/2017: Myanmar military and Rakhine extremists set fire on Rohingya homes Quarter 5 (Ywa Thik Ke Ywa) in Maungdaw downtown since 5pm.

[Pic: scene seen from far]

13- 9pm 29/8/2017: Eastern Rohingya hamlet of Quater 5 in Maungdaw downtown has been set ablaze by Myanmar military and Rakhine extremists. It continues to burn.

To be updated as news breaks....

[Reported by RB Correspondents in Northern Arakan; Edited by M.S. Anwar]

Please email at: to send your reports and feedback.

By Cansu Dikme
August 28, 2017

Deputy PM Bekir Bozdag urges international community to take action against killings in Rakhine state

ANKARA -- Turkey is highly concerned about violence in Myanmar, Deputy Prime Minister Bekir Bozdag stated on Monday.

On his Twitter account, Bozdag expressed “sorrow and concern” felt in Turkey for Rohingya Muslims.

"We feel deep sorrow and concern for the violence, deaths and the injured [in Myanmar],” Bozdag wrote.

Bozdag also urged the international community to take action on the situation in Myanmar.

“The UN, UNSC and international community should not remain silent against these genocide-reminiscent massacres,” Bozdag added.

Deadly attacks on border posts in western Myanmar's Rakhine state broke out on Friday, resulting in mass civilian casualties. 

Later, media reports emerged saying Myanmar security forces used disproportionate force and displaced thousands of Rohingya villagers, destroying homes with mortars and machine guns. 

The region has seen simmering tension between its Buddhist and Muslim populations since communal violence broke out in 2012.

A security clampdown launched in October last year in Maungdaw, where Rohingya form the majority, led to a UN report on human rights violations by security forces that indicated crimes against humanity had taken place.

The UN documented mass gang-rape, killings -- including those of babies and young children -- brutal beatings and disappearances. Rohingya representatives have said approximately 400 people were slain during the operation.

Rohingya Exodus