Hundreds of thousands of Muslims, or Rohingya, are being killed in Burma. Burma is located near China and India. There is a Muslim nation there called Rohingya in Burma, they have another name, the Myanmar. The country is ruled by a Buddhist army. Muslims there represent about 10 percent of the population. Muslims there are subject to extermination and displacement. Gambians on social media has been hugely concerned by the crisis recently and most of them have been sharing pictures denouncing or showing support to the Rohingya. Here’s 12 things you should know about the crisis
1. According to UN reports, Rohingya Muslims are one of the most persecuted minorities in the world. As of 2012, the Rohingya people have been forced to live in makeshift camps and are unable to leave, else face further persecution and even death.
2. Rohingyas living in Myanmar were stripped of their citizenship and moved to “stateless.” The Myanmar government refuses to acknowledge the Rohingya people and refuses to give them a path to citizenship.
3. In 1942, British armed Rohingyas took it upon themselves to destroy the homes of Rakhine Buddhists instead of fighting the Japanese. It is estimated that 5,000 Rohingyas were killed by Rakhine nationalists. In retaliation, 20,000 Rakhine were killed by the Rohingyas.
4. In 2012, a Rakhine woman was found raped and murdered. It was assumed that Rohingya men were responsible for this. This sparked a war between the two religious communities. 10 Burmese Muslims were killed by Rakhine natives in retaliation. It led to the crackdown and mass uprooting of Rohingya Muslims from their homes and into camps.
5. Rohingyas have to pay to marry and have to pay to have children.
6. According to the Democratic Voice Of Burma, 650 Rohingyas were killed, 1,200 were missing, and 80,000 displaced from their homes, as of 2012. The number have only increased since then.
7. Rohingyas trying to escape the violence in the state of Rakhine cross over into Bangladesh, only to be turned away and back into Myanmar. They are unwanted from both sides.
8. Rohingyas are the target of Myanmar police and army, as depicted by their level of violence against the Rohingya.
9. A Myanmar official called Rohingya people “ugly as ogres,” and that “in reality, Rohingya are neither Myanmar people nor Myanmar’s ethnic group.”
10. Buddhist monks in Myanmar actively block any form of humanitarian aid to Rohingya communities.
11. During the 2012 Rakhine State Riots, the Myanmar government ordered all mosques to be shut down and made gatherings of three or more people to be illegal.
12. On March 29, 2014, the Myanmar government banned the word “Rohingya.”