msa December 9, 2014

By Rohingya Eye & Kml Arakanni

Arakan State (Rohingya Vision) — Myanmar’s authority has recently started confiscating internet-connected electronic devices from Rohingya people, whereas they continue to extort money from the innocent people on the pretexts of the possession of having such devices and under other accusations, according to the reliable sources in the region.

“The Myanmar military and the traffic police put up a roadblock on the way to the Rohingya places such as Thakkay Pyin (Sakki Fara) and Hla Ma Chay (Saparang Fara) yesterday. They stopped five Rohingya youths who were passing by: three brothers from Thandaw Li (Saantoli) village and two others are from Kaddin Paik-Pyali Chaung village.

The authority checked up their smart phones. And they found some applications like Whatsapp/ WeChat/ Viber/ Facebook installed in their phones. Upon that, the authority accused them of sending the ground information to the international media in order to defame Myanmar.

And they started beating up the Rohingya youths. Then, they released the youths having extorted Kyat 18,00o from them and threatened that they would imprison Rohingyas if they found such applications installed in their phones” said an eyewitness asking not to be named.

On other hand, Military Security and Intelligence in southern Maungdaw extorts money from the Rohingya businessmen accusing them of being illegal Bengali immigrants.

Regarding that, a local Rohingya said “the head of the Military Security and Intelligence (SaRaPha, စရဖ) in Alaythan Kyaw village, southern Maungdaw, summoned all the businessmen and the shopkeepers at the village’s market for a meeting at his office. In the meeting he threatened the people to extort money from them.

He said ‘you all are illegal Bengali immigrants. So, if you do any business here, you need to give us money on monthly basis. If you don’t, we will put all in the list the culprits of 2012 violence and subsequently, arrest you all.’

Using different methods of threats, he extorted Kyat 300,000 each from the following people.

  • Abdul Manaf (son of) Auli, 35, from Alaytha Kyaw, because he runs a clothing store at the market
  • Mv Ziyaur Rahman (son of) Habibur Rahman, from Kampu hamlet of Alaythan Kyaw village, because he runs a clothing store at the market
  • Mv Abdul Mubin (son of) Sayed Kasim, from Alaythan Kyaw, because his father has a fishing boat.”

Moreover, nowadays, a fraud Rakhine woman in cooperation with the police in Maungdaw frequently traps Rohingya shopkeepers in order to squeeze money from them.

“Karimullah (son of) Zahid Hussein, 30, from Shwe Zar (locally known as Shujah Fara) village, runs a cosmetic store at the Maungdaw Municipal Market Line in the downtown of Maungdaw.

Around 2:30PM on December 2, a Rakhine lady, a relative of the regional security police (နယ္ထိန္း) Lieutenant Htoo Htoo, arrived at his shop and asked the price of some cosmetic products. And then, she left.

Soon after, she came back again and claimed that she had lost her purse. The Shopkeeper, Karimullah, said ‘If you had lost your purse here, I would have found it and kept it safe. So, I don’t think if any such thing has happened here.’

So, she left and came back once again and this time, her relative police officer, Lieutenant Htoo Htoo. Htoo Htoo arrested the shopkeeper as well as the two adjacent Rohingya shopkeepers. The police officer extorted Kyat 200,000 from them and released after 4:00PM of the day.

The other two unconcerned victims are:

  • Jaber, 25, from Shujah village
  • Mv Mufiz (son of) Habi, 37, from Shujah village” said an elderly Rohingya.

The reports added that the same Rakhine woman trapped another Rohingya shopkeeper who runs a clothing store in the same Municipal Market line on November 15. He is Mohammed Salam (son of) Kassim, 63, from Nyaung Chaung (locally known as Khadir Bil) village.

The man was arrested by the police due to the woman’s complaint and subsequently Kyat 300,000 was extorted from him for his release.

Although the Rohingya shopkeepers complaint to U Ann Kyaw (ဦးအံ့ေက်ာ္) , the in-charge of the market in the Maungdaw Municipal Department, about the fraudulent claims by the Rakhine woman to trap the shopkeepers, he didn’t take any actions and try to give any protection to them because the complainants are Rohingyas. Therefore, the Rohingya shopkeepers in the market are said to have been extremely worried.

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