A Report Published Last Friday By The International Crime Initiative ( Isci )

782 Words Nov 2nd, 2015 4 Pages
A report published last Thursday by the International Crime Initiative (ISCI), an organization affiliated to the Queen Mary University in the UK and partnered with Harvard University, is once again turning the world’s attention to the Rohingyas, a Muslim ethnic minority from western Myanmar.

Titled “Countdown to Annihilation: Genocide in Myanmar” and written by a team of scholars, activists and journalists, the research is an in-depth analysis of the policies implemented by successive Burmese governments toward the Rohingya community. It concludes that beyond any reasonable doubt, these were implemented with genocidal intents.

The Rohingyas inhabit Rakhine State, on the border with Bangladesh. A law passed in 1982 deprived them of their right to citizenship and various outbursts of inter-communal violence between the Buddhist and Muslim communities forced them to relocate to Internally Displaced People’s (IDP) centers.

According to ISCI, the conflict is rooted in politics rather than religion, and a bit of historical research is needed to grasp the reasons behind it.

Rakhine – also known as Arakan – used to be an independent kingdom with its own capital, Mrauk U, and came under Burmese control only in 1785. In spite of this shift in sovereignty – and of British colonialism, which soon followed – locals are still mostly Rakhines, a Bhuddist people distinct from the Bamar, who populate the fertile valleys of the Irrawaddy river basin.

In their midst is another minority:…

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