Monthly Archives: June 2014

WORLD REFUGEE DAY (20 June 2014): HOPE FOR THE FUTURE


Press released by MERHROM, 22 June

World Refugee Day is celebrated every year to commemorate the struggles of refugees who forced to flee their country due to war, conflict and human rights abuses. Every year the numbers of refugees and asylum seekers are increasing. According to the United Nations report, to date more than 50 million people worldwide currently refugees, asylum seekers or internally displaced persons within their own countries. The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) facing great challenges to cope with the current situation where the numbers are increasing tremendously for the past few years due to war and conflict in some particular countries.

The world effort to reduct the conflict is very little compared to the huge numbers of refugees and asylum seekers who suffered from endless human rights abuses around the world.

We the minority ethnic Rohingya in Myanmar become the victims of genocide for more than 6 decades. The United Nations has announced the ethnic Rohingya as the most prosecuted ethnic in the world. But what the United Nations and the World Leaders do to stop the genocide? Until now they are not able to stop the genocide. We are dying and living in hardship day by day and waiting when the situation will change.

While the International communities continuously urge the United Nations, Super Power Countries, World Leaders, ASEAN and OIC to intervene with the Myanmar government to stop the genocide against minority Rohingya, non of them can do so.

Why can’t the United Nations and the Super Power Countries stop the war and conflict around the world? The problem is the United Nations and the Super powers do not want to resolve the issue for their own interest. We are very much frustrated to see the United Nations as the most mandated body in the world fail to stop the genocide agaist minority Rohingya in Myanmar. We hope for the Super Power Countries to use their influence to increase pressure to Myanmar government to stop the genocide against stateless Rohingya but our lives does not matter to them.
There is no political will to stop the killing and human rights abuses towards minority Rohingya.

The United Nations and the Super Power Countries must work towards reducing war and conflict around the world rather than looking for more budgets to cope with the increase numbers of refugees.

We regret to see how the ASEAN react to the plights of Rohingya. The ASEAN do not able to face the Myanmar government to stop the Genocide towards ethnic minority. The failure of ASEAN to deal with Myanmar government has serious impact on the ASEAN members. The refugees and the asylum seekers forced to flee Myanmar and seek refuge in neigboring countries especially Bangladesh, Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia. Non of these countries have sign the 1951 Refugee Convention. Meaning there is no protection guarantee for the refugees and asylum seekers who seeking refuge in those countries. We are not allow to work, our children could not go to formal school and we have to pay higher fees for the hospitalization and treatment.

We have a big hope for the OIC members to deal with the Myanmar government to stop the genocide but we are still hoping until now. While hoping hundreds or even thousand of us have died in our homeland or in transit countries.

What else can we hope? How long can we hope? So many issues are not resolved.

While we thankful to the Malaysian government for giving us the place to stay temporarily, we still have some major issues that we always bring to the attention of the Malaysian government. That includes the rights to work, rights to formal education, rights to health and others. We are strugling day by day to feed our families. As the Malaysian government did not give us the permission to work, we have to work illegally and we have to face the Malaysian law for working illegaly.

Currently there are huge numbers of Rohingya asylum seekers fail to register themselves at the UNHCR office. We do not understand why the UNHCR take a lengthy time to register ethnic Rohingya. As a result there are huge numbers of Rohingya in police lock-ups, prisons and dentention camps throughout Malaysia. Most of them have major health problem due to their background. The United Nations has already well known the plight of Rohingya in Myanmar especially after the attack on minority Rohingya in June 2012. However the registration process is very slow and this put them at high risk of arrest.

We are frustrated with the slow registration process by the UNHCR office in Kuala Lumpur for the ethnic Rohingya. We put our lives in great danger when we flee our country to seek protection in neigboring countries. When we reached the UNHCR office we face the hardship to register ourselves with them.

We have to wait for many years for the registration process and meanwhile many were arrested by the authorities. As a result thousands of Rohingya currently detain in detention camps. Some Rohingya died in the detention camps and suffered from serious diseases.

Next week the Muslims around the world will be fasting in the month of Ramadhan. Lots of our Mosques and Madrasah has been burnt especially after the conflict in June 2012. Our religious rights has been taken away by the Myanmar government as they closing the Mosques and do not allow us to perform our religious duties.

For the upcoming Holy month of Ramadhan, we are hoping that the UNHCR and Malaysian government could release the Rohingya in detentions so that they also can perform the religious duties in better condition. Back home we do not know how our families can go through the month of Ramadhan as the Myanmar government continuously prosecute us in different ways. We are not allow to perform prayers at Mosqeus what else prayers in the month of Ramadhan. We feel very sad as we could not perform our religious duties in our home land.

While the United Nations and World Leaders highlighting the refugee issues arround the world, the plight of Rohingya refugees are always left behind. We are the forgotton one though the United Nations themselves categories the Rohingya as the most prosecuted ethnic in the world.

We only ask for one thing from the United Nations, Super Power Countries, ASEAN, OIC and International Communities at large. Please STOP the Genocide towards minority Rohingya.

Thank you.

Yours sincerely,

Mr. Zafar Ahmad Bin Abdul Ghani
President
Myanmar Ethnic Rohingya Human Rights Organization Malaysia (MERHROM)
Tel No: +6016-6827287
Blog: www.merhrom.wordpress.com
Email: rights4rohingya
Email: rights4rohingyas
https://www.facebook.com/zafar.ahmad.
https://twitter.com/merhromZafar

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Australia offers asylum-seekers £5,500 to return home


Source telegraph, 21 June

Australia is offering asylum-seekers in its Pacific immigration camps up to $10,000 (£5,500) if they voluntarily return to their home country, a report said Saturday, prompting outrage from refugee campaigners.

Fairfax Media reported that those returning to Lebanon from detention centres on Papua New Guinea’s Manus Island and the tiny Pacific state of Nauru were offered the highest amount of $10,000.

Iranians and Sudanese were given $7,000 if they dropped bids for refugee status, Afghans $4,000 and those from Pakistan, Nepal and Burma $3,300, the report in The Sydney Morning Herald said.

The Herald said under the previous Labor administration – in office until last September – the payments were much lower, ranging from $1,500 to $2,000.

Immigration Minister Scott Morrison has not confirmed the figures, but a spokesman said the “return packages” were “tailored to the circumstances of each case”.

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“The process of voluntary return is conducted in direct partnership with the International Organization for Migration. It has been standard policy and practice for more than 10 years.”

Labor’s immigration spokesman Richard Marles said the government should be ensuring that asylum-seekers’ claims were being properly processed, not issuing “blank cheques”.

“When Scott Morrison was in opposition, he opposed Labor’s own reintegration packages and now he is offering sums which are triple the amount,” Marles told the ABC.

Australia has toughened its policy on asylum-seekers in recent years, with those arriving on unauthorised boats now refused residency in Australia even if they are deemed refugees.

Instead they are held in detention camps on Manus and Nauru and are expected to be resettled in those countries if their claims are valid.

Since the policy was introduced, more asylum-seekers have chosen to voluntarily return to their country of origin while the number of people attempting to reach Australia by boat has dried up, with no boats arriving for six months.

Morrison’s spokesman said 283 people had voluntarily returned home from offshore processing centres since shortly after the conservative government of Prime Minister Tony Abbott won power in September.

Refugee campaigners criticised the idea of the payments, and said returning asylum-seekers could still face persecution back home.

“The idea that you would put people in a hell hole like Manus Island, treat them abysmally and then try to bribe them to go back to the appalling circumstances they left shows just how morally bankrupt this government is,” Greens party leader Christine Milne said.

Edited by Andrew Marszal

Briefing the Burmese Rohingya Crisis on World Refugee Day – 20th June 2014


This report is prepared for the record of Rohingya..

The below link is full report of “Briefing the Burmese Rohingya Crisis on World Refugee Day – 20th June 2014”

World Refugee Day 2014 on Rohingya

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