Published: 27 October 2017 Author: Stefan Talmon
The Muslim Rohingya are an ethnic minority who have lived for centuries in Myanmar’s western state of Rhakine. The Rohingya are denied citizenship in mainly Buddhist Myanmar and have been the object of repeated violent attacks by Buddhist nationalists and the State security forces. In a report released on 24 August 2017, the Advisory Commission on Rakhine State headed by former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan identified the issue of citizenship rights as “a broad concern, and a major impediment to peace and prosperity in Rakhine.”
On 25 August 2017, Rohingya militants attacked police and army posts in the border region with Bangladesh killing several members of the security forces. These attacks led to a fresh outbreak of violence against the Rohingya in Rakhine state which caused hundreds of thousands of them to flee their homes and cross the border into Bangladesh. The government of Myanmar said it was fighting insurgents but those who fled said troops and Rakhine Buddhists are conducting a brutal campaign to drive them from their homes. They accused local Buddhist mobs, backed by government forces, of burning their villages. Myanmar’s government, on the other hand, claimed that the Rohingyas were burning their own homes.
Ob 6 September 2017, Germany condemned the violence in Myanmar and called for the repatriation of refugees as soon as possible. In a statement the Government said: (more…)