Friday, December 5, 2014

A deaf ear to the Muslim minorities cry for help...

In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful; blessings and peace be upon Prophet Muhammad s.a.w.


The Declining Day (Al-'Asr)
1. By the declining day,
2. Lo! Man is in a state of loss,
3. Save those who believe and do good works, and exhort 
one another to truth and exhort one another to endurance.

MYANMAR policy’s message to Muslims: Get out. I read this headline of foreign wire report with disgust...Why? It was because this alarming situation was never being reported by our press at a time when Asean leaders met for their summit in the country (Naypyitaw, new capital city of Myanmar) recently.

Perhaps issues pertaining to the Muslims were never discussed at all at the summit. The foreign report noted that the Myanmar (previously Burma) government has given the estimated one million Rohingya people in Rakhine, a coastal region of the country a dispiriting choice: Prove your family has lived here for more than 60 years and qualify for second-class citizenship, or be placed in camps and face deportation.

The policy, accompanied by a wave of decrees and legislation, has made life for the Rohingya, a long-persecuted Muslim minority, ever more desperate, spurring the biggest flow of Rohingya refugees since a major exodus two years ago.

In the last three weeks alone, 14,500 Rohingya have sailed from the beaches of Rakhine State to Thailand, with the ultimate goal of reaching Malaysia, according to the Arakan Project, a group that monitors Rohingya refugees.

As Muslims all over the world were celebrating the new Hegira year of 1436, Muslim minorities such as the Rohingya, the Kashmiris, the Uighurs were prosecuted and were 'boot' out of their homelands. The question is are Muslims concerned about the unfortunate fate of their brothers in Islam?

The deportation of the Rohingya people should put shame to regional organization such as Asean and globally the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) and of course the United Nations (UN) which was seen 'all quiet' regarding the welfare of the Muslims.

It was estimated that nowadays there are tens thousand of the Rohingya people in Malaysia, yet this issue is not addressed accordingly by our leaders and at international fronts.The UN refugee agency says about 28,000 Rohingyas are registered as refugees in Malaysia, but groups representing them say the real number of Burma Muslim immigrants is much higher and has surged because of the violence. 

Alas, Asean leaders had met in Myanmar, but the issues of the Rohingya people 'were swept under the carpet'. And Malaysia as a senior member of Asean with its leaders kept on 'boasting' that it is an example and champion among Islamic countries kept on silence on the issue.

Based on previous international development, it was a well known fact the UN only took urgent action to resolved what they claimed to be violence in a Muslim country but keep 'cool' on prosecution on the Muslim minorities.

The crisis in Dafur, Sudan; East Timor (previously a part of Indonesia), Iraq; Afghanistan and Iran were examples 'on how efficient' the UN was but why the poor response towards the genocide of the Muslim minorities such as in Rakhine (Myanmar), Kashmir (India), Xinjiang (China), Chechnya (Russia), Pattani (Thailand) and Mindanao (Philippines)?

Regarding the issue of the Rohingya, why the world is silent when the junta regime in Yangon threatened the Muslim to prove that their family has lived there for more than 60 years and qualify for second-class citizenship, or be placed in camps and face deportation.

History recorded that Myanmar or Burma Muslims had a tract record of hundreds of years in the counrty. The first Muslims arrived in Burma's Ayeyarwady (Irrawaddy) River delta, on the Tanintharyi coast in Rakhine in the 9th century, prior to the establishment of the first Burmese empire in 1055 AD by King Anawrahta of Bagan. 

The early Muslim settlements and propagation of Islam were documented by Arab, Persian, European, and Chinese travelers of the 9th century.

Burma Muslims are the descendants of Muslim peoples who settled and intermarried with the local Burmese ethnic groups. They arrived in Burma as traders or settlers, military personnel and prisoners of war, refugees, and as victims of slavery. However, many early Muslims also held positions of status as royal advisers, royal administrators, port authorities, mayors, and traditional medicine men. 

Myanmar which is often associated with the military junta. From 1962 to 2011, the country was ruled by the military junta that suppressed almost all dissent and wielded absolute power in the face of international condemnation and sanctions. The generals who ran the country stood accused of gross human rights abuses, including the forcible relocation of civilians and the widespread use of forced labour, including children. 

Not surprisingly during the just concluded Asean summit, the leaders were silent on the Rohingya issue. In front of the junta leaders of President Thein Sein, no words about the Rohingya were spoken; not even from the President Barack Obama who came for the US-Asean summit.

Obama had praised Thein Sein regarding Myanmar tremendous job chairing Asean this year and has shown solid leadership on issues of critical importance to the entire region but was silent on the persecution of Muslims. 

But before the summit, the President did call President Thein Sein urging him to address the tensions and humanitarian situation in Rakhine State. He asked the Myanmar leader to revise the anti-Rohingya policies, specifically the resettlement plan. Myanmar must “support the civil and political rights of the Rohingya population,” he said.

If superpowers and rich countries even the Muslims nations had pay little or no interest on the Rohingya issue, as individual Muslims have we a thought for our brothers' plight? We are helpless but at  least we could have 'du'a' (pray) to Allah SWT (The Greatest) for their safety in their homeland and abroad

No comments: