Allow the Rohingya to land in this fair country, urges Gabungan Bertindak Malaysia. The alternative is to leave them adrift and certain death.
The Rohingya are probably one of the most persecuted peoples currently.
Forced depopulation and massive oppression on lands that the Rohingya have lived on for at least a thousand years in Rakhine state (west of the country now known as Myanmar) has made living intolerable for the Rohingya.
In the words of the International Crisis Group:
“Muslim communities, in particular the Rohingya, have over the years been progressively marginalised from social and political life. Many have long been denied full citizenship, with significant consequences for their livelihoods and well-being. There are now efforts underway in the legislature to disenfranchise them, which could be incendiary. The Rohingya see this as their last remaining connection to politics and means of influence. Without this, it would be hard for them to avoid the conclusion that politics had failed them – which could prompt civil disobedience or even organised violence.”
The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum reports of warning signs of genocide in Burma with regard to the Rohingya.
Under these severe conditions, it is not surprising that boatloads of Rohingya are departing Rakhine state and taking the perilous journey by sea to other countries in search of refuge.
To stay would probably be near certain death, either slow in the internment camps (concentration camps) or rapid at the hands of violent extremists with government collusion.
There are now boatloads with thousands of Rohingya adrift in the Andaman Sea and the Malacca Straits.
They have been abandoned by the people smugglers that had intended to land them in neighbouring countries.
They are now adrift starving and without any sustenance. These include the elderly, women and children. Their pitiful images are now screened worldwide.
We strongly urge and implore the Malaysian government in particular and other Asean countries to alleviate the plight of these desperate human beings.
They have been made stateless and now can only depend on the humanity that can and must be shown to them by Malaysia and Asean. Unless Malaysia and her Asean partners pressure the Myanmar government to enfranchise the Rohingya, promise them a safe return and ensure their safety, it is complicit in this humanitarian crisis.
Make Malaysia proud. Allow them to land in this fair country.
The alternative is to leave them adrift and certain death.
This statement is endorsed by the following member organisations of Gabungan Bertindak Malaysia (GBM):
- Muslim Professional Forum (MPF)
- Pertubuhan IKRAM Malaysia (Ikram)
- Islamic Renaissance Front (IRF)
- The Kuala Lumpur and Selangor Chinese Assembly Hall （KLSCAH）
- Saya Anak Bangsa Malaysia (SABM)
- Tamil Foundation Malaysia (TF)
- LLG Cultural Development Centre (LLG)
- Suara Rakyat Malaysia (Suaram)
- Persatuan Bekas Siswazah Universiti dan Kolej di China, Malaysia (LiuHua)
- Persatuan Aliran Kesedaran Negara (Aliran)
- Negeri Sembilan Chinese Assembly Hall (NSCAH)
- National Indian Rights Action Team (Niat)
- Pusat Komunikasi Masyarakt (Komas)
- All Women’s Action Society (Awam)
- United Chinese School Alumni Associations of Malaysia