Saturday, August 20, 2016

Rape of Rohingya woman unacceptable

For decades since independence of Burma from the Great Britain, Rohingya existence has been made almost impossible with repeated pogroms, all part of a very sinister genocidal program that was participated by many Buddhists inside this multi-national/ethnic country. The military scripted their annihilation, the monks provided the justification and steered up the mob, the Buddhist politicians colluded and planned their extinction, and the hateful mob carried out the blueprint. It was a sad story, repeated time and again.
One would rather like to believe that such persecution or the slow genocide of the Rohingya people would stop with the election that brought the NLD into power. But Myanmar sadly lives in the past and reform seems to be a mirage. It continues to remain an apartheid state where the rights of Muslim and other minorities have no value to the Buddhist majority nation.

Otherwise, how do we explain that the persecution of the Rohingyas would continue with Suu Kyi's NLD coming to power in Myanmar? More difficult is to even imagine that Myanmar's armed forces would still continue to commit serious crimes like gang rape and murder of Rohingya women. For too long rape was used as a weapon of war to scare and evict the minorities in Myanmar. Should not such crimes stop with the election win of the NLD? But facts are unpleasant and grim. Such crimes are happening. This is absolutely unacceptable and her government must investigate and punish the guilty military personnel severely so that it sends a stern message that such old norms are not going to be tolerated in today's Myanmar. But will she do the needful?.

According to the local residents in Sittwe, the capital city of Arakan State, Rizwana (daughter of Yakub, Aged 25) was believed to have been gang-raped by soldiers of Myanmar Army’s Artillery in Sittwe.

On Tuesday, 16th August 2016, she was taken to the Artillery cantonment by a group of soldiers while she was on her way to Thet Kay Pyin village from Lat-Ma-Shay village. On 17th August 2016 early morning, Rizwana was discarded near the cantonment, and soldiers informed the village chairman of Thet Kay Pyin that they have found a Muslim lady nearby their cantonment and asked the village chairman to take her.

The village chairman went there and took her to the rural clinic in Thet Kay Pyin while she was unconscious and injured. She was given some medical treatment after arriving at the clinic but she died at 7pm on that day.

Today (19th August 2016) the security personnel at Thet Kay Pyin clinic asked the village chairman U Hla Myint to find any of relatives of the victim, Rizwana. The chairman was connected with an Aunt of the victim while searching intensely for a victim to hand over the dead body from the clinic, as it was ordered by the security personnel. Her dead body was taken from the clinic by her Aunt at 10am today and she was buried at Latt-Ma-Shay village cemetery at 2:30pm after Friday congregational prayer.

Her body didn't receive any post-mortem examination.

According to sources familiar with the area, she is originally from Aung Mingalar quarter in Sittwe. Her mother, brother and herself left for Bawdufah camp after her father passed away in 2013. They then faced several crises inside the ghetto. After arriving to the camp, her mother and brother left for Malaysia by boat and she had struggled alone. Since she became alone she worked at houses to wash clothes inside her camp weekly for 3-4 days in Thet Kay Pyin.

A reliable source said that Rizwana was detained by the soldiers on Tuesday while she was going to Thet Kay Pyin. An eyewitness stated that she saw bleeding around the private parts of the victim while she was at the clinic.

Many believe that she was gang-raped until unconscious and thrown away.

No medical report has been released by the doctor at Thet Kay Pyin and there won’t be justice for this Rohingya woman.

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