From the Editor-in-Chief: Rohingyas and the UNSC

Enayetullah Khan
Wednesday, October 4th, 2017
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It is a depressing situation.


It appears that the global community has adopted a callous attitude toward the Rohingyas. That much is clear from the deliberations last week of the UN Security Council, which was unable to adopt any resolution that could demand an end to Myanmar’s military action in Rakhaine state. That ought not to have been the fall-out of the meeting, seeing that more than half a million Rohingyas have by now fled to Bangladesh. With already so many pressures on it, the government of Bangladesh is now compelled to care for the hapless Rohingyas with its own meager resources. Of course, aid for the refugees has been coming in from a number of quarters, which is fine. The question, though, is one of the extent to which such measures can go or for how long.


There is the added worry of when if at all the Rohingyas will be in a position to go back home. Their homes have been destroyed, their villages do not exist. And all of that has been the result of the atrocities carried out by Myanmar soldiers. It is these questions, vexing as they are, that should have been dealt with decisively by the UNSC. Except for the United States, which surprisingly and refreshingly adopted a tough stand against the Naypyitaw government’s genocidal actions in Rakhaine, there was not much of an inclination on the part of some other members of the Security Council to take Myanmar to task over the issue. Russia and China made it clear that they were not prepared to condemn the Myanmar government over the situation in Rakhaine. Indeed, it was evident from their inability to come down hard on the Myanmar military that raised the grave worry of what solution, assuming that a search for a solution gets underway, can be found to the problem.


At the UNSC, the Bangladesh permanent representative laid out a clear picture of the dilemma his country faces in light of the Rohingya influx. That statement was clearly at variance with the statement of the Myanmar representative, the country’s national security advisor. The latter’s statement was a bare-faced denial of the realities in respect of the Rohingyas.


There is the very upsetting feeling that Myanmar’s treatment of the Rohingyas and the world’s failure to make it see reason may well lead to more complicated conditions. Chances are that the region will turn into a sphere of instability.

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