3 die in Ro­hingya food stam­pede

Khaleej Times - - FRONT PAGE -

dhaka — Bangladesh has ac­cused Myanmar of re­peat­edly vi­o­lat­ing its air space and warned that any more “provoca­tive acts” could have “un­war­ranted con­se­quences”, rais­ing the risk of a de­te­ri­o­ra­tion in re­la­tions al­ready strained by the Ro­hingya refugee cri­sis.

Nearly 400,000 Ro­hingya Mus­lims from western Myanmar have crossed into Bangladesh since Au­gust 25, flee­ing a Myanmar gov­ern­ment of­fen­sive against in­sur­gents that the United Na­tions has branded a “text­book ex­am­ple of eth­nic cleans­ing”.

Bangladesh said Myanmar drones and he­li­copters had vi­o­lated its air space three times — on Septem­ber 10, 12 and 14 — and it had called in a top Myanmar em­bassy of­fi­cial in Dhaka to com­plain.

“Bangladesh ex­pressed deep con­cern at the rep­e­ti­tion of such acts of provo­ca­tion and de­manded that Myanmar takes im­me­di­ate mea­sures to en­sure that such vi­o­la­tion of sovereignty does not oc­cur again,” the min­istry said in state­ment late on Fri­day.

“These provoca­tive acts may lead to un­war­ranted con­se­quences.”

A Myanmar gov­ern­ment spokesman said he did not have in­for­ma­tion about the in­ci­dents Bangladesh had com­plained about but Myanmar had de­nied an ear­lier ac­cu­sa­tion.

The spokesman, Zaw Htay, said Myanmar would check any in­for­ma­tion that Bangladesh pro­vided.

“Our two coun­tries are fac­ing the refugee cri­sis. We need to col­lab­o­rate with good un­der­stand­ing,” he told Reuters.

Bangladesh has for decades faced in­fluxes of Ro­hingya flee­ing per­se­cu­tion in Bud­dhist-ma­jor­ity Myanmar, where the Ro­hingya are re­garded as il­le­gal mi­grants.

Bangladesh was al­ready home to 400,000 Ro­hingya be­fore the lat­est cri­sis erupted on Au­gust 25, when Ro­hingya in­sur­gents at­tacked about 30 po­lice posts and an army camp, killing a dozen peo­ple.

The Myanmar se­cu­rity forces and Rakhine Bud­dhist vig­i­lantes re­sponded with what rights mon­i­tors and flee­ing Ro­hingya say is a

We know two ro­hingya have died on Fri­day at balukhali area of Cox bazar. they in­cluded a six­month-old baby who died of pneu­mo­nia Mo­hammed Kai-Kislu, Lo­cal po­lice chief

cam­paign of vi­o­lence and ar­son aimed at driv­ing out the Mus­lim pop­u­la­tion.

Bangladesh has said all refugees must go home. Myanmar has said it will take back those who can ver­ify their ci­ti­zen­ship but most Ro­hingya are stateless.

Bangladeshi Prime Min­is­ter Sheikh Hasina was leav­ing on Satur­day for the United Na­tions Gen­eral Assem­bly where she would call for pres­sure to en­sure Myanmar takes ev­ery­one back af­ter stop­ping its “eth­nic cleans­ing’, her press sec­re­tary, Ih­sanul Karim, told Reuters.

The con­flict has led to a hu­man­i­tar­ian cri­sis on both sides of the bor­der and raised ques­tions about Myanmar’s path un­der the lead­er­ship of No­bel lau­re­ate Aung San Suu Kyi af­ter nearly 50 years of strict mil­i­tary rule.

There is lit­tle sym­pa­thy for the Ro­hingya in a coun­try where the end of mil­i­tary rule has un­leashed old an­i­mosi­ties and the mil­i­tary cam­paign in Rakhine State is widely sup­ported. —

AFP

A Bangladesh bor­der guard watches Ro­hingya refugees at the Jal­pa­toli refugee camp in the no­man’s land area be­tween Myanmar and Bangladesh, near Gumd­hum vil­lage on Satur­day. —

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