The Rohingya have their own history, culture, tradition and language different from other ethnic minority races who were living as a compact community in a geographical territory within the Union of Burma.
Burma Times: Although the call of Mr. Ban Ki-moon, the Secretary General of the United Nations to the Burmese Government President Thein Sein is not too late to grant the citizenship to the ethnic Rohingya minority people of Burma, it is the moral responsibility of President Thein Sein not to delay the restoration of the citizenship rights of the Rohingya people to establish its democratic standing and show of respect to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) before ending his Presidency at the end of March, 2016 or newly elected NLD democratic government led by Nobel Peace Laureate and Burma’s Human Rights Advocate Daw Aung San Suu Kyi so as Burma becomes a dignified, democratic and credible nation in the world.
Not only Mr. Ban Ki-moon but also the Governments of Indonesia, United Kingdom, United States of America, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Australia, Malaysia, Turkey, Iran, Ambassadors form Islamic nations, ASEAN, OIC Secretary General, European Union, international Nobel Peace Prize winners, International NGOs and Humanitarian Organizations, Geneva based UN Human Rights Council, international civil societies and religious community leaders including world-wide Human Rights organizations urged and demanded the Burmese Government President Thein Sein to grant the citizenship rights to the Rohingyas to maintain the complete openness of democratic reform and free economy.
In fact, the government of Burma President Thein Sein is playing foul play to the international community still branding the Rohingya people as Bengali or foreigners who entered to Burma from Bangladesh during the British colonial period. Presenting unjustifiable show cause that Rohingya status must be verified and decide in the Burmese Parliament whether they should be granted citizenship or not which he says a risk factor for the security, sovereignty, and the national integrity of Burma.
The simple analysis is that the current Burmese Government is intentionally not providing the citizenship rights to the Muslim Rohingyas to continue their divide and rule policy against the people of Arakan State creating communal violence destroying the centuries old peaceful co-existence between the Muslim Rohingyas and Buddhist Rakhine in the name of superiority complex of Buddhist nationalism so that Arakanese people can never unite to establish peace, prosperity and freedom of restoration of the lost independence of Arakan kingdom which was forcibly occupied by the Buddhist Burmese King Bodaw in 1784.
The Rohingya people of the north-western region of Burma are an indigenous people of Arakan and sons of the soil known as Bumi-putra of Arakan home-land. They are living there from generation to generation since 8th century until today. History of the Rohingya people as an ethnic minority people in Burma is available in the net, media websites, and all ancient history books of Arakan.
The Rohingyas have their own history, culture, tradition and language different from other ethnic minority races who were living as a compact community in a geographical territory within the Union of Burma. They are the heroic and brave people who have been enduring all sorts of inhuman atrocities, racial and religious persecution at the hands of successive Burmese Government and its brutal security forces since last 60 years and now at hands of their own fellow countrymen Buddhist Rakhines.
Being an indigenous racial group with distinct quality of a civilized people ,who are law abiding and seekers of peaceful life with fellow Rakhine community on the spirit of peaceful co-existence, who are bona fide citizens of Burma based on the Declaration of Burma independence and 1948 Citizenship laws, their active participation in all democratic election since 1937 to 2011 without rejection by the Election Commission of Burma, the repeated assurance and issuance of statements by the previous Burmese Government leaders such as Bogyoke Aung San, Prime Minister U Nu, U Ba Swe, President U Sao Shwe Thaik, Lt. General Aung Gyi and other leaders confirming that Rohingyas are one of the races same as Shan, Kachin, Mon and Rakhine during the parliamentary democratic rule in Burma are the strong solid evidences that clearly manifests the legal rights of the Rohingya people as dignified human group in Arakan under the protection of rule of law and governance of the union of Burma. They have every rights same as other ethnic minorities and national races in the union of Burma.
The 1982 citizenship law which took away the citizenship rights of Rohingya people making them as stateless people in their own ancestral homeland is a conspiracy of previous military Government to create communal riots in Arakan on the basis of divide and rule policy of former military junta. This discriminatory citizenship law which violates the standard international laws and Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) must be repealed immediately when the country is opening as free economy and passing through a transition to a democratic society. The President Thein Sein who recently advocated to send the Rohingya people to third country under UNHCR supervision classifying the Rohingyas as foreigners was compelled to change his unrealistic and fabricated accusation and now pledged to the world to restore Rohingyas citizenship and accommodating the Rohingyas through national reconciliation process in their own places lost during the man-made tragedy and ethnic cleansing against the Rohingyas by the extremist Rakhine ruling Government of Arakan is a welcome sign to the right direction, but, continuation of violence, burning, arrest and harassment of the Rohingyas in the name immigration check forcing to accept as Bengali race is totally unacceptable which needs to stop without further delay.
Arakan is belonged to the Rohingya people same as other minority races like Rakhines, Mro, Thet, Kamwee and tribal people and all of them are citizens of the Union of Burma with same national rights rendered by the Burma current Constitution and they have every right to live safe, secure and free from fear with honor and dignity in Burma beyond the reasonable doubt. It is the responsibility of the Union of Burma Government to establish rule of law restoring all Rohingyas rights and provide the required protection to the Rohingya ethnic minority people disregarding race, religion and language.
Our great President Mr. Barack Obama during his 6 hours visit to the Union of Burma on November 19, 2012 clearly mentioned during his speech to the people and government of Burma that Rohingya people have dignity, dignity inside themselves same as the President Obama and Burmese people and no one such as Rohingya should be subjected to torture, inhuman treatment and violence due to race, religion and color in Burma.
The historic speech of our great President of USA, Mr. Barack Obama in University of Yangon should be regarded as an eye-opener, failure to heed this valuable advice by the Burmese Government will be self-destructive to people and country of the Union of Burma. Instead of exclusion of the Rohingyas from Burma main-stream society, the inclusion and embracing the Rohingyas as sons of the soil (Bumi-putra) will enhance the current on-going democratic process and establishment of free-economy with foreign investment leading the Union of Burma a most prosperous, peaceful and progressive country in the world within 15 years.
Shaukhat (aka) MSK Jilani
Rohingya American Society (RAS)
Milwaukee, Wisconsin State