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UN Chief to Myanmar: Settle Rohingya Status Question

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UN Chief to Myanmar: Settle Rohingya Status Question
April 27
02:20 2015

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on Friday urged the government of Myanmar to address the citizenship status of Rohingya Muslims ahead of elections planned for later this year.

In a meeting at the United Nations, Ban told regional officials that the ongoing state sponsored  tensions in the country’s western citizenship Arakan( Rakhine) state could be “seriously destabilizing.”

The state has been the site of deadly clashes by the Buddhist community on mostly Muslim Rohingya, many of whom are made stateless.

“There are already troubling signs of ethnic and religious differences being exploited in the run-up to the elections,” Ban said, adding that the reform process could be jeopardized if the underlying causes of tensions were not addressed.

Myanmar, a majority Buddhist country also known as Burma, does not recognize the existence of the Rohingya ethnicity. Government officials, intentionally  view Rohingya as illegal migrants from Bangladesh.

One sided attack  killed up to 280 Rohingya and displaced 140,000 others in June 2012. Since then, tens of thousands of Rohingyas  have been forced to live in internally displaced camps (IDPs).

The Myanmar government has rejected demands for citizenship for the Rohingya but has expressed a willingness to consider citizenship for those who will forcefully identify as Bengali.

The country’s 1982 citizenship law says members of any officially recognized minority must be able to prove their ancestors lived in Burma before the British invaded Arakan (Rakhine) in 1823.

Although many of Myanmar’s  thousands of Rohingya Muslims ancestors have lived in Burma for generations. But the Burmese junta have been discriminatory towards the  Rohingyas.

Note:Changes have been made,Voice of America is not responsible for these.

Source:Voice of America.

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