Rohingyan Muslims are an ethnic group who practice Islam and speak a language related Bengali. The origin of this group of people is disputed with some saying they are indigenous to the state of Rakhine in Myanmar while others contend they are migrants who came from Bengal, latterly Bangladesh, to Burma (Myanmar) during the period of British colonial rule. According to the United Nations, Rohingyans are one of the most persecuted minorities in the world. Many Rohingyans have fled Myanmar to refugee camps in Bangladesh and to areas along the Thai-Myanmar border.
Briefs, January 3, 2013
Rohingya refugees to be repatriated
PHUKET - More than 70 refugees from Myanmar's Rohingya minority found adrift off a Thai resort island will be repatriated to their homeland. Phuket provincial governor Maitri Inthusut said they were unable to continue their journey to Malaysia due to exhaustion and fear of mishaps at sea. Maitri said 12 children were among the 73 refugees, all of whom would be sent back to Myanmar by land on transport provided by immigration police. Sectarian violence last year involving the Rohingya left hundreds dead and many more homeless. AP
Communists call off truce in Philippines
MANILA - Insurgents in the Philippines called off a truce with the government, almost two weeks ahead of schedule, raising concerns over peace talks. The Communist Party of the Philippines blamed the government, but a spokesman for President Benigno Aquino said the CPP just wanted an excuse to cut short the ceasefire. A spokesman said the government would observe the ceasefire until January 15. AFP