After heavy rainfall in Myanmar people are facing new problem of food shortage. Many residents said they were still too afraid to sleep at night. Due to the conflict pitting ethnic Rakhine Buddhists against stateless Rohingya Muslims in coastal Rakhine state at least 21 people have died and more than 1,600 homes were torched in Myanmar. Some of the fires were extinguished only by the rain.
Due to the fear of violence in Myanmar result in the shortage deliveries of food and other cargo to Sittwe, Rakhine’s capital, limiting supplies and sending prices skyrocketing. Shops, banks, schools and markets were closed.
President of Myanmar, Thein Sein has declared an emergency in Rakhine and warned that the spiraling violence could threaten the democratic reforms tentatively transforming the country after half a century of military rule.
UN and Myanmar
The U.N. special adviser on Myanmar, Vijay Nambiar, visited Sittwe on Wednesday, accompanied by government officials, and then flew to Maungdaw in northern Rakhine state near Bangladesh. Both cities have seen violence in recent days. Thousands of Muslim villagers were ready to take flight and about 1,500 Rohingyas attempted to enter Bangladesh by boats but were been turned away.
A statement was issued by Human Rights Watch on Wednesday, which urges Bangladesh to open its border to Rohingyas seeking refuge. According to Bill Frelick, Refugee Program director at Human Rights Watch Bangladesh is putting lives at grave risk and is under obligation under international law to keep its border open to people fleeing threats to their lives and provide them protection.
Rohingyas are considered to be illegal immigrants from Bangladesh and Myanmar denies their citizenship. According to Bangladesh Rohingyas have been living in Myanmar for centuries and should be recognized there as citizens. At a news conference Dipu Moni, Bangladesh Foreign Minister said that it was not in Bangladesh’s interest to accept any refugees because the impoverished country’s resources already are strained.