Five Years on, Rohingyas Remember Darkest Days in History of Mankind
August 25, 2022
The European Rohingya Council (ERC) echoes the voices of Rohingyas all over the world and remembers today as one of the darkest days in the history of mankind. On 25th August, 2017 the Burmese military brutally cracked down of our people and drove away hundreds of thousands of Rohingyas from their lands culminating in a brutal genocide in the Arakan State of Myanmar.
We support the international community in calling out Myanmar’s maltreatment of the Rohingya community as genocide. The United States on March 21, 2022 officially declared that the violence in 2017 amounted to genocide, saying there was clear evidence of an attempt to “destroy” the Rohingya population. Additionally, we support the ICJ in its ruling on July 22 2022 that the case against Myanmar government’s alleged genocide of Rohingyas filed by The Gambia can proceed.
We support the statements of UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet that return of Rohingya refugees is not possible currently due to concerns about their safety in Myanmar. We additionally urge regional countries including India, Bangladesh, Indonesia and China to respect the principle of non-refoulement and support the cause of the persecuted Rohingya minority.
We urge the international community to curb the Burmese military power. This can be done by blocking the sources of revenue that Myanmar’s military is receiving. We also recommend a UN-sponsored investigation for the prosecution of Myanmar’s top military commanders on charges of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes for violence against the Rohingya population and support the ICC’s Pre-Trial Chamber I in its decision regarding Myanmar’s crimes against humanity in the form of systematic forced migration of 800,000 Rohingya women, men, children and elderly people to neighbouring Bangladesh.
We declare 25 August as the Rohingya Remembrance Day. It was on this unfortunate day in 2017 that the combined Myanmar Armed Forces – Navy, Air Force and Army – launched a large scale premeditated attack against the substantial segment of the Rohingya population in Northern Rakhine State of Myanmar, using the invented pretext that the Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (ARSA), a 1 year old, small, unorganised group of largely illiterate, barefooted young Rohingya village men had launched (coordinated) “attacks on 30 police outposts” in N. Rakhine. Myanmar government’s official story has never been independently verified by any credible research, media or UN agency.
Finally, we support the several million Rohingyas who were violently deported by the Burmese government in periodic waves of exodus since 1978. We urge for their secure, protected and dignified return to their ancestral homeland in Northern Rakhine. We urge the international community to offer them refuge and protection, until Myanmar is ready to accept them as equal citizens and human rights guarantees which the Rohingya population had enjoyed upon independence from Britain well until late 1962.
The European Rohingya Council (ERC) calls upon the international community, including the regional powers of South Asia to pressure the military junta to stop persecuting the Rohingyas and all other peaceful people of Myanmar.
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