Thousands of Rohingya stranded on Bangladesh border as fighting rages in Myanmar

Thousands of Rohingya stranded on Bangladesh border as fighting rages in Myanmar

More than 3,000 Rohingya have arrived in Bangladesh from Myanmar, where the ethnic Muslim minority faces persecution, in the past three days, the United Nations refugee agency UNHCR said on Monday. He would visit the Bangladeshi capital, Dhaka, from November 30 to December 2.

The Muslims, who were seeking refuge from the ongoing violence in Myanmar, had been in a border no man's land for two days.

He said there is systematic oppression on Rohingya Muslims and called on the global community to take action.

About one million Rohingya live in Myanmar's Rakhine State, where Rohingya insurgents attacked police outposts on August 25. It also disrupted the networks that brought migrants from Myanmar and Bangladesh to countries like Thailand and Malaysia.

Border guards have been driving Rohingya who have managed to cross into Bangladesh back across the border several times a day, an AFP correspondent said.

Thailand is preparing to receive people fleeing fighting in Myanmar and send them back "when they are ready", the prime minister said on Tuesday, following a series of attacks by Rohingya Muslim insurgents on Myanmar security forces last week.

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Almost 100 thousand Rohingya have fled to Bangladesh in the past year, though the Bangladeshi government has yet to recognize the refugee status of the displaced minority.

An English language statement by the Burmese Information Ministry has put the blame on Rohingya Muslim insurgents. There are around 400,000 Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh, which has said no new refugees will be allowed in.

These events violate the basic rights of the Rohingya and they also represent a grave violation of Myanmar's government global commitments to protect civilians.

The violence marks a dramatic escalation of a conflict that has simmered in the region since last October, when a similar but much smaller Rohingya attack prompted a brutal military operation dogged by allegations of serious human rights abuses. "Let us also pray for our Rohingya brothers", he said.

Mapim vice-president Ahmad Tarmizi Sulaiman said UN Security Council should deploy troops to Myanmar and put pressure on its government to stop the killing of Rohingya people.

In recent days, more than 200 people have fled Maungdaw and Buthidaung townships and gone to Sittwe where they are staying in monasteries, schools, religious buildings, and police stations, he said.

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