Rohingya activists in Malaysia fear genocide against minorities in Myanmar after military coup

General view of a Rohingya settlement in Bandar Baru Sentul, Kuala Lumpur April 24, 2020. — Picture Hari Anggara
General view of a Rohingya settlement in Bandar Baru Sentul, Kuala Lumpur April 24, 2020. — Picture Hari Anggara

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KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 25 — Myanmar Ethnic Rohingya Human Rights Organisation Malaysia (MEHROM) president Zafar Ahmad Abdul Ghani has today called on world leaders to lead efforts to establish real democracy, stop Rohingya genocide, war crimes and human rights violations in Myanmar.

In a statement today, Zafar said there are concerns following the coup in Myanmar that the military will launch several genocide attacks on the Rohingya ethnic minority within a year of military holding power.

“The most worrying things are the impact on stateless Rohingya genocide survivors in Arakan State, the impact on other ethnic minorities and the impact on neighbouring countries particularly Bangladesh, India, Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia,” he said in a statement.

“Ethnic minority Rohingya is the most prosecuted ethnic in the world who have faced ongoing genocide in Myanmar for many decades. Following the coup, we are worried more Rohingya and other ethnic groups would become refugees in neighbouring countries.

“This will increase the case of human trafficking and boat people,” he added.

On February 1, the Myanmar military seized power following weeks of tensions with civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi and her government.

Zafar urged world leaders to lead coordinated economic and financial sanctions targeted at Myanmar military bureaucrats and conglomerate, adding that since the military took over there have been many indicators that showed democracy is too difficult to sustain in Myanmar.

He claimed that citizenships cannot be easily terminated, with national identification papers easily confiscated and property arbitrarily confiscated.

“The result of the 2020 Election clearly shows the rejection of the Myanmar people for the military government. The election result clearly shows the hope and desire of the Myanmar people for democracy. But what option do we have?” he asked.

“The road to democracy must start from the root by restoring the citizenship of the Rohingya and guaranteeing the rights of all ethnic groups in Myanmar,” he said.

This comes as Malaysia’s Immigration Department deported 1,086 Myanmar nationals on Tuesday, despite a court granting a stay against the deportation just hours prior.

Rights groups explained that non-Rohingya refugees were part of those deported.

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