Burma Times Correspondent: May 04, 2015
Many Bangladesh Rakhines have expressed their determination to fight alongside the Arakan Army and rescue their countrymen from the military regime of Myanmar according to testimonies given to Burma Times.
They say that Rakhines in Bangladesh were chased out by Burmese invaders more than two centuries ago and since then a policy of persecution has been directed against the Rakhine people. They are determined to put an end to this persecution and are mobilising forces against the Burmese regime, they said.
They also claim that around 700 Rakhines from Bangladesh have entered Burma to fight alongside the Arakan Army.
Once Arakan is made independent, they say they will go back to their homeland.
Some Rakhine households in Bangladesh are seen with calendars bearing the name of Arakan Army.
Arakan was an independent kingdom till 1785 when it fell to invading Burmese armies. A brutal pogrom directed against both Rakhines and Muslims killed more than 200,000 people and caused most of the populace to flee. Arakan was only repopulated with the British victory over Burmese imperial forces.