Protests erupted in the Rakhine state of Myanmar against the planned repatriation of the Rohingyas Muslims from Bangladesh. A group of protesters held demonstration on Sunday (25 November) referring to Rohingyas as “runaway refugees”, The New Indian Express has reported.
The demonstration was held days after both countries were supposed to officially start the repatriation process of Rohingyas.
A year ago, Bangladesh and Myanmar had struck a deal in order to repatriate members of the Rohingya community who had fled the country in August 2017 alleging persecution by Myanmar’s military.
As per the report, around 100 people led by Buddhist monks marched through the state capital Sittwe. They were holding red banners and chanting slogans.
A monk participating in the protest said, "There will be no benefits to us or our country if we accept the Bengalis".
In Myanmar, Rohingyas are referred to as Bengali in a derogatory manner to imply that they are from Bangladesh.
"The government should take precise action against illegal immigrants from Bangladesh," said Kyawt Sein, a member of the protest committee.
The protesters held sign calling for authorities to not allow the resettling of “runaway refugees” in the northern Rakhine state.
The repatriation process of Rohingyas, who are living in Bangladeshi camps, was supposed to start 10 days ago but many of them are refusing to go back to Myanmar alleging being afraid of the return without guarantees of citizenship, safety and equal access in healthcare and education.
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