The Permanent Peoples Tribunal (PPT) judgment on the genocidal persecution and expulsion of Rohingyas people into Bangladesh, back in 2017, was the first systematic documentation of the Myanmar military junta’s criminal responsibility (openly shared by the former Prime Minister Aung San Suu Kyi). The pieces of evidence produced by the PPT were further and repetitively confirmed by a series of ad-hoc reports, also from United Nations. Meanwhile, the Myanmar government evolved into a full military dictatorship (leaving destitute and incarcerating Aung San Suu Kyi herself) and a terror regime, responsible for thousands of murders among the opposition movements, the detention of tens of thousands of protesters, in a framework of extensive civil war against armed forms of resistance, and the denial of any possible dialogue with an internationally recognised ‘alternative’ government. The chronicles of what has been going on in the country, and on the failed attempts of ASEAN States to give at least a minimum of signals of democracy in Myanmar, have been the object of periodical reports also in the mainstream international press and are not the specific matter of this News.
In a context which directly involves, with scarce if not strictly negative results, all actors of the regional scenarios and more broadly of the international community, the Rohingyas have been obliged to play, with no interruption, the strictly passive role of victims.
The event of Cyclone Mocha has made the headlines for its severity, and is only the last confirmation of a long-lasting situation since 2017, with rare up and even worse down. The vulnerable makeshift shelters in camps and settlements have been cancelled, together with the scarce infrastructures, school healthcare facilities, and water and sanitation services adding waterborne diseases to a situation of malnutrition, worsened (in the weeks before the cyclone) by a UN communication on food support suspension.
The message of this News could not be clearer: ‘Nothing changed’. The genocide of people who do not meet governmental priorities (formal democracies or untouchable dictatorships) is ongoing, in various forms. From conditions worsened by a fatality, as in the case of the cyclone, to ‘migrations’ in boats with the risk of sinking or disappearing, to the increasing discussions on the possibility of repatriation in a country at the centre of the regional worries and conflicts, that certainly does not have in agenda the only necessary right: citizenship recognition to Rohingyas.
The situation in Rohingyas camps has been repeatedly described as intolerable and inhumane, the worst ever seen. Its reality is among the best documented in terms of needs, even though the economic resources made available never reflect compliance with a medium/long-term plan, being an expression of fragmented solidarity that hides horrors and excesses, that justifies the donors (even the international Islamic organisations), and avoid to call by their name the systemic and specific responsibilities. Rohingyas, like other minorities that do not fit in the ‘big scenario’ can only be used to favour the formulation of ‘recommendations’ clearly separated from operational obligations. Real people’s lives are part of a game where they are available to be sold and exchanged according to what is compatible with the priorities and equilibria of the dominant or strategic political actors.
Together with migrants’ transversal collectivity, their genocide cannot be declared because they are not officially considered people with rights. The Rohingyas are simply declaring, loudly, that their silent genocide is the documentation that what is also disappearing is the credibility of any discourse on human rights.
The ongoing war, against many peoples in the world sharing a similar fate to Rohingyas’ one, has the same message that comes from the Ukranian scenario: a solution that includes concrete steps toward peace and human rights is the only credible, effective, comparatively cheap, condition for a future where ‘community’ could be an inclusive reality.