Feb 17

The Rohingya Migration – One Of ‘The Other’ Migration Crises

The Council of Foreign Relations

The ongoing migration crises around the world seem to be a never ending story. With the strong picture of a little boy laying on the shore near Bodrum in Turkey in September 2015 the global awareness of the crisis peaked, but since it’s massive exposure in both conventional and social media it seems to have diminished.

The proximity principle is as always strong and the focus on migration tends to be on the ones affecting us directly. One of the migration crises often referred to as ‘one of the other’ is the ongoing flight from Myanmar by tens of thousands of Rohingya. The Rohingya is an ethnic sufi-inflected Sunni-Muslim minority, primarily living in the Rakhine state in western Myanmar and it’s population of approximately one million makes up around a third of the total population of the extremely poor state. The Rohingya has since the 1970’s been subject to pervasive violations of human rights, including persecution, ethnic cleansing and statelessness. With Aung San Suu Kyi’s landslide victory in the Myanmar general election in November 2015 many hoped for a positive change for the country and the Rohingya and former US president Obama lifted the nearly two decade long sanctions against Myanmar. So far only small changes have been seen and with what is still a very fragile government there has been nothing but silence on the treatment of the Rohingya who still faces extreme limitations of their freedom, violence and in parts of the region also severe malnutrition, in what by Human Rights Watch is described as a campaign of arsons, killings and rape. Continue reading →

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