News and reflections from staff and volunteers working with Partners Relief & Development and other agencies. Our team mission: Free full lives for the children of Burma. Our hope: reconciled communities living in peace.
At the risk of sounding like a broken record, I am sharing this with you. What motivates me to write again is the golden rule. I want to do for children in conflict what I would want done for my own. Simple.
The systematic abuse of Rohingya people in West Burma has gone from bad to worse. Last week the remaining NGO’s who had an MOU with the government were forced to leave the area and fly back to Rangoon. Their buildings, including those belonging to the UN, were destroyed.
The survivors of recent massacres are largely unheard from as there are no observers of their suffering or the outcomes among the survivors. By government mandate, access to the Rohingya is blocked. For this reason there is very little detailed news about what is going on, but the news we get is much worse than anything we have ever heard before.
One of our friends in a large population of refugees sent word yesterday that “…doctors are treating muslim patients very badly now at Sittwe hospital. Most of the patients sent to Sittwe hospital die these days. I am afraid that people’s doubt about rakhine doctors killing muslim patients is true.”
Another friend is trying to help a boy who suffers from diabetes, asthma, and multiple health complications due to sustained denial of adequate food, shelter, and health services. The photos I have show an emaciated boy in the arms of his father, obviously close to death.
We are trying to help him get medical care but where will he get it, even if we can find the money to pay? When he suggested paying a bribe to the police to get him transported to the nearby government hospital, he wrote that it may be the quickest way to end his life, not save it. In his email this morning he wrote: “Also today there was a body returned from Sittwe hospital of a pregnant woman who died while in their care, and the child was lost as well. The injuries on her face suggest very much she was beaten or worse.”
Another friend who lives in the camps wrote yesterday that, “There is no medical care at all for patients. Family members just have to sit and watch the patients dying. It has been more than a week now IDPs are facing food shortage. Many families are starving now.”
Genocide, according the Oxford Dictionaries is “The deliberate killing of a large group of people, especially those of a particular nation or ethnic group:a campaign of genocide”
What I write about today is that. Genocide. The proof is in Burma’s government policy, described in the recent report by Fortify Rights and confirmed by Human Rights Watch, the New York Times, and most of the worlds leading news services; it is in the well documented process of removal of rights and identity of an entire ethnic group; it is in the many violent massacres and riots that have resulted in a massive loss of life.
Why is this not making news headlines? April 7th was the 20th anniversary of the genocide in Rwanda, where the world community declared: “this will never happen again”.
It’s happening again.
I beg you to join Partners Relief & Development in our efforts to help the survivors and prevent the slaughter of these wonderful people. Please re post the news as it is released and raise your voice with local and federal politicians. Tweet, post, blog, and in every way spread the word.
And please, if you can, join us by giving funds. Our team is working on aid delivery and other survival enhancing actions now. This costs money.
One generous donor has given a $30,000. matching grant as incentive to help the Rohingya. That means the gift of $30.00 that I just donated turns to $60.00 to help the Rohingya people. Just go to this donation page, click one time gift, and in the drop down menu, select “emergency relief.” All funds donated to this crisis in the month of April will be matched.
I just gave $30.00 so the Rohingya children can experience the freedom and fullness that my daughters have every day. Please join me.