Humane: Do Some Good
Trapped by Religious Bigotry
One of my favorite news sources, RYOT, has this slogan: “Every Story Lets You Take Action.” Can you believe it? News that comes with solutions! The following is an article posted on June 17, 2014. One that will prompt you to take action, I hope.
There Are Modern-Day Concentration Camps in Myanmar That Nobody’s Talking About
by Ben Roffee
All Photos: YouTube/The New York Times
Myanmar (also known as Burma) doesn’t want them. Bangladesh doesn’t want them. Indonesia, Thailand, and Cambodia don’t want them either.
The Rohingya truly are “virtually friendless” and “one of the the world’s most persecuted peoples,” as the UN describes them.
Unsurprisingly, few people seem to care to talk about it.
They’ve been burned alive, towed out and abandoned at sea, sold into slavery, and written out of the lexicon of their own country.
Now, at least 140,000 of them are confined to the modern-day equivalent of concentration camps.
Denied citizenship since 1982, the Rohingya are a Muslim minority reviled by much of Myanmar’s overwhelmingly Buddhist majority, where even some monks are entirely supportive of their mistreatment.
Many in support of the concentration camps argue that it’s necessary to keep the Muslims “contained” in order to preserve the Buddhist culture.
Some 86,000 have attempted to flee to Thailand or Indonesia, but many have ended up being trafficked and sold as slaves to Thai fishing operations, according to Human Rights Watch.
Conditions have only gotten worse in the camps since the government booted Doctors Without Borders for providing medical assistance to the minority ethnic group.
The government continues to restrict their travel, education, and access to food and medical supplies, which you can see below in a recent New York Times report from Sittwe, Myanmar: http://www.youtube.com/user/TheNewYorkTimes
RYOT NOTE from Ben
The Rohingya, alongside 14.2 million other displaced people in the world, are in the midst of a full blown refugee crisis. If you care about protecting human rights around the world, click the Action Box to check out our Cause Page on Amnesty International, who work in 150 countries to promote justice by exposing abuses while educating and mobilizing the public. Also, be sure to share this story to Become the News!