Burma Times Correspondent: February 28, 2015
The Chief Minister for Rakhine (Arakan) state Major General Maung Maung Ohn held a meeting at Chaki Pari, Akyab on Tuesday, according to our correspondent.
Parliamentarians, monks, and some noted anti Muslim activists were present during the meeting. Rohingya elders from IDP camps in and around Akyab were present as the audience.
During the meeting, the chief minister said that the local Rohingyas were influenced by the propaganda of those living abroad. This propaganda was inciting them to violence against Buddhists, he said. “As long as that continues, you will find no peace in this country,” he said.
Ohn said that the food shortages, the lack of medical care and restriction movements will continue as long as the locals listened to the propaganda from abroad.
He also asked the Rohingya Muslims to surrender their white cards by late March. Afterwards a token would be given to them which would ensure all facilities. Following the token delivery, they might also be allowed to settle in the lands from which they were driven away in 2012.
During the speech, a Rohingya man asked the chief minster if they would be allowed to identify as Rohingyas. The chief minister jokingly said that he would be hanged by the people if he gave that permission.
The chief minister also said that if Rohingyas identified themselves as Bengalis, they would be given the same status as the Hindus i.e. the green card which refers to foreign citizens who have been naturalised. Green card holders enjoy more rights than white card holders, the latter referring to foreigners. That is still a step below pink card, which refers to full citizens.