Exclusive Stories

Rakhine issue could’ve been handled better: Suu Kyi

party

MNA Exclusive Desk: Myanmar leader Aung San Suu Kyi on Thursday said in hindsight her government could have handled the situation in Rakhine state better, reported news agency. Some 700,000 Rohingya Muslims fled Rakhine after government troops led a brutal crackdown in Myanmar’s Rakhine state in response to attacks by the Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army on 30 Myanmar police posts and a military base in August 2017. “There are of course ways in which, with hindsight, the situation could’ve been handled better,” Suu Kyi said at the World Economic Forum on ASEAN in Hanoi. “But we believe that in order ...

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Rohingya women need $72m in aid: Oxfam

Oxfam

MNA Exclusive Desk: Oxfam has said $72 million is required for humanitarian programs designed to aid the Rohingya women and children currently living in Cox’s Bazar’s refugee camps. It said the Rohingya women have been developing health problems, missing out on aid, and are at a greater risk of abuse due to unsafe and unsuitable facilities—in many parts of the camps. Speakers made the assessment at an Oxfam report launch on Monday. “One Year On: Time To Put Women and Girls At The Heart Of The Rohingya Response,” was launched at the Raowa Complex in Dhaka. State Minister for Foreign ...

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UN urges ICC to probe atrocities against Rohingyas

demonstrations

MNA Exclusive Desk: United Nations Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide Adama Dieng has urged ICC Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda to consider the recommendation of its Chamber to decide on the opening of an investigation into the atrocities against Rohingyas without delay. He said the decision of the Pre-Trial Chamber of the International Criminal Court (ICC) provides victims an opportunity to access justice for some of the crimes they have endured, which is an important first step, reported news agency. Myanmar has refused to cooperate with any impartial investigation into the matter and continues to insist hiding behind its sovereign ...

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ICC decision opens a clear avenue for justice for Rohingya: AI

Myanmar

MNA Exclusive Desk: Amnesty International has said the ICC decision is a significant step in the right direction which opens up a clear avenue of justice for the Rohingya who were driven out of their homes, often as soldiers opened fire on them and burned down their villages. The comment came following the International Criminal Court’s (ICC) ruling on Thursday that it has jurisdiction over Myanmar’s deportation of the Rohingya population to Bangladesh, a crime against humanity. Amnesty International’s South Asia Director Biraj Patnaik said during the Myanmar military’s horrifying campaign of ethnic cleansing more than 725,000 Rohingya women, men ...

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World criticism fails to wake up Suu Kyi

international community

MNA Exclusive Desk: Myanmar’s government looks as if it’s under siege from an international community concerned about the condition of its nascent democracy, with widespread calls for a genocide tribunal to hold its military to account for the brutal treatment of its Muslim Rohingya minority. But experts say not to expect any change of course from the country’s leader, State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi, even after a fresh round of withering criticism from abroad following Monday’s show-trial conviction of two Reuters reporters who helped expose extrajudicial killings of 10 Rohingya men and boys. Suu Kyi’s motivations are opaque. Even ...

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Myanmar army apologizes for mistaken photos in book on Rohingya crisis

book

MNA Exclusive Desk: The Myanmar military issued a rare apology on Monday, acknowledging that two photographs it published in a book on the crisis over the Rohingya Muslim minority were “published incorrectly”. Reuters published an exclusive report on Friday revealing that two of the pictures in the book that aimed at illustrating the army’s account of last year’s events in the western Myanmar state of Rakhine, were in fact archive pictures of different conflicts, and one was posted with an incorrect caption. The erroneous publication of the photographs comes amid a series of government steps against what it has seen ...

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Myanmar rejects UN probe on Rohingya crackdown

probe

MNA Exclusive Desk: Myanmar rejected Wednesday the findings of a UN probe alleging genocide by its military against the Rohingya, in a strident government response to a damning report on the crisis. Myanmar has come under immense pressure this week over last year’s military crackdown that pushed more than 700,000 of the Muslim minority into Bangladesh. Monday’s report by a UN fact-finding mission said there was evidence of genocide and crimes against humanity “perpetrated on a massive scale”. In a session of the UN Security Council late Tuesday several countries—including the United States—called for Myanmar’s military leaders to face international ...

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Myanmar generals had “genocidal intent” against Rohingyas: UN

genocidal intent

MNA Exclusive Desk: Myanmar’s military carried out mass killings and gang rapes of Muslim Rohingya with “genocidal intent” and the commander-in-chief and five generals should be prosecuted for orchestrating the gravest crimes under law, UN investigators said on Monday. The civilian government led by Aung San Suu Kyi has allowed hate speech to thrive, destroyed documents and failed to protect minorities from crimes against humanity and war crimes by the army in Rakhine, Kachin and Shan states, they said in a report. In doing so, it “contributed to the commission of atrocity crimes”, the report said. A year ago, government ...

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UNICEF seeks investment for education of Rohingya children

Rohingya

MNA Exclusive Desk: More than half a million Rohingya refugee children in Bangladesh are being denied the chance of a proper education and are susceptible to fall prey to despair and frustration, said the United Nations. To this end, the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) unveiled a report on Thursday seeking urgent international efforts to avert them from such perils. “If we don’t make investment in education now, we face the very real danger of seeing a ‘lost generation’ of Rohingya children, children who lack the skills they need to deal with their current situation, and who will be incapable ...

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Rohingya mark Eid, one year after Myanmar crisis began

Rohingya

MNA Exclusive Desk: Nearly one million Rohingya Muslims marked Eid al-Adha on Wednesday in the world’s largest refugee camp, almost a year to the day since a brutal military crackdown drove the persecuted minority from Myanmar in huge numbers, reported news agency. Prayers were offered in makeshift mosques across southern Bangladesh to celebrate the Islamic festival of sacrifice as cows were slaughtered in muddy fields across the sprawling camps. In Kutupalong, a gigantic hill settlement crammed with hundreds of thousands of refugees, a muezzin called the faithful to pray as children played on a wooden carousel and ran about in ...

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Muslims utter ‘Labbaik Allahumma Labbaik’ at Arafat

Hajj

MNA Exclusive Desk: More than two million pilgrims from around the world have converged in Mina to perform main ritual of Hajj today. Today, the pilgrims will move to Arafat, where they will listen sermon to be delivered at Namira Mosque. They will perform Dhuhr and Asr prayers together. The pilgrims will spend the time in Arafat with prayers for acceptance of their pilgrimage and recitation of Qur’anic verses until sunset. After sunset, they will head to Muzdalifah, where they will stay until midnight, engaged in prayers after performing Maghreb and Isha prayers combined. Meanwhile, the ritual of changing Ghilaf-e-Kaaba ...

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Over 2 million Muslims begin annual hajj pilgrimage

annual hajj

MNA Exclusive Desk: More than 2 million Muslims began the annual hajj pilgrimage Sunday in Saudi Arabia, circling the cube-shaped Kaaba from first light in Mecca that Islam’s faithful face five times each day during their prayers. The five-day hajj pilgrimage represents one of the world’s biggest gathering every year, a trip required of all able-bodied Muslims once in their life, reported news agency. Muslims circle the Kaaba counter-clockwise seven times while reciting supplications to God, then walk between the two hills traveled by Hagar. Mecca’s Grand Mosque, the world’s largest, encompasses the Kaaba and the two hills. Before heading ...

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US imposes sanctions on Myanmar military

Myanmar military

MNA Exclusive Desk: The United States on Friday imposed sanctions on four Myanmar military and police commanders and two army units for involvement in what it called “ethnic cleansing” and other human rights abuses against the country’s Rohingya Muslims, the treasury department said. The sanctions marked the toughest US action so far in response to Myanmar’s crackdown on the Rohingya minority, which started last year and has driven more than 700,000 people into neighboring Bangladesh and left thousands of dead behind. But the Trump administration did not target the highest levels of the Myanmar military and also stopped short of ...

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US embassy shares Bangabandhu video on FB page

page

MNA Exclusive Desk: US Embassy in Dhaka on Wednesday shared a video on Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman on its verified Facebook page marking the National Mourning Day. The video post said, “Today marks the National Mourning Day, the 43rd anniversary of assassination of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman. U.S. Embassy Dhaka is proud to say that Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman is a State Department alumnus – he’s one of the very first International Visitor Program (IVP) participants from #Bangladesh.” Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman- the architect of the country’s independence — was assassinated along ...

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Dhaka ranked 2nd least liveable city

liveable city

MNA Exclusive Desk: Dhaka has ranked the second least liveable city in the world, according to Economist Intelligence Unit annual global survey latest report. Dhaka scored 38 out of 100 and ranked 139th out of 140 cities, according to the Global Liveability Index 2018, published on Tuesday. The worldwide league table ranks 140 cities on a range of factors, including political and social stability, crime, education and access to healthcare. Austrian capital, Vienna, has beaten Australia’s Melbourne to be named the world’s most liveable city. It’s the first time a European city has topped the rankings of the Economist Intelligence ...

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Bangladesh says Myanmar isn’t tackling Rohingya concerns

Rohingya

MNA Exclusive Desk: Myanmar has also made no demonstrable effort to address the concerns of the Rohingyas and the international community, said Bangladesh’s UN Ambassador in a letter to the UN Security Council. Bangladesh is urging the UN Security Council to take actions regarding the safe return of Rohingyas to Myanmar, as Myanmar is failing to tackle the concerns of over 1 million Rohingya Muslims who fled the country. In a letter circulated Tuesday to the council, Bangladesh’s UN Ambassador Masud Bin Momen said that, even though his government continues to engage with Myanmar “in good faith” about the repatriation ...

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BD, Japan share proposals to resolve Rohingya crisis

proposals

MNA Exclusive Desk: Bangladesh and Japan on Tuesday shared specific proposals to find an early solution to Rohingya crisis ensuring their safe, voluntary and sustainable return to Myanmar. The Japanese side also sought the safety of its nationals working in Bangladesh and a congenial environment for Japanese investors in Bangladesh. The issues came up for discussions at a bilateral meeting Bangladesh and Japan at state guesthouse Meghna in Dhaka. Foreign Minister AH Mahmood Ali and his Japanese counterpart Taro Kono led their respective sides at the meeting. However, the two ministers briefed the media after the meeting, reports news agency.

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5-year jail for road accident deaths

road accidents

MNA Exclusive Desk: The cabinet has given its final approval to a draft of the Road Transport Act 2018 that raises the maximum sentence for deaths from road accidents to five years from three in prison and fines. The approval was given at a meeting chaired by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Monday. Under the proposed law, if death through road crash is proved as intentional murder then the offenders will be punished as per the Penal Code. While talking to reporters after the meeting, Roads and Highway Department secretary Nazrul Islam said earlier the highest punishment for the crime ...

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Govt urges for not to be confused by fake news

fake

MNA Editorial Desk: Government on Thursday urged all not to get confused with the fake news being run by various vested quarters through different news portals and social media involving the Prime Minister over the current situation. A press release issued by the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) said such distorted, fake, fabricated news items are aimed at confusing the common people and the innocent students now on a movement seeking safe roads, UNB reports. The release, signed by PM’s Press Secretary Ihsanul Karim, said such fabricated news items are creating confusions in public mind under the present condition of the ...

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Myanmar appoints panel to probe Rohingya abuses

abuses

MNA Exclusive Desk: Myanmar has established a commission of inquiry to probe allegations of human rights abuses in conflict-torn Rakhine state, authorities said on Monday, reported news agency. The four-person commission will be comprised of two local and two international members – Filipino diplomat Rosario Manalo and Kenzo Oshima, Japan’s former ambassador to the U.N – the Myanmar President’s Office said in a statement. Manalo, 82, a former undersecretary of foreign affairs, will chair the commission. The two local members are lawyer Mya Thein and Aung Tun Thet, an economist and former UN official. Aung Tun Thet was last year ...

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India excludes 4m from Assam’s draft citizens list

draft

MNA Exclusive Desk: India’s registrar general said on Monday that 4,007,707 people had been excluded from a draft national register of citizens in the border state of Assam, in a move that has raised fears for the future of people in the region, reported news agency. Sailesh, the registrar general and census commissioner of India, said those excluded from the list would not be deported from the country and would have a chance to file an appeal. More than 30 million had provided documents to prove their citizenship. The National Register of Citizens (NRC) is being updated after nearly seven ...

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UNSC urges to create conditions for Rohingya return

Myanmar

MNA Exclusive Desk: The UN Security Council urged Myanmar’s government on Monday to step up efforts to create conditions that will allow Rohingya Muslims who fled a violent crackdown to safely return to the country from neighbouring Bangladesh. The council stressed in a statement following closed briefings that progress is also needed by Myanmar on implementing agreements on relations with the UN refugee and development agencies and with Bangladesh on returning Rohingya, reported news agency. Security Council members again stressed “the importance of undertaking transparent and independent investigations in allegations of human rights abuses and violations.” The new UN special ...

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Key member resigns from Myanmar advisory panel

Myanmar

MNA Exclusive Desk: A key member of an international advisory panel on Myanmar’s crisis-hit Rakhine state has resigned, telling news agency that the Aung San Suu Kyi-appointed board risks becoming “part of the problem” in a conflict that forced 700,000 Rohingya Muslims to flee. Retired Thai lawmaker and ambassador Kobsak Chutikul was secretary for the panel hand-picked by civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi to advise her government on how to handle the aftermath of a military campaign that drove the minority out of the country. Kobsak Chutikul said his position became untenable ahead of a second full meeting of ...

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Quader says ‘No’ to BNP’s conditional election

election

MNA Editorial Desk: Awami League General Secretary Obaidul Quader has dismissed the conditions the BNP announced for its participation in the upcoming general election. Bangladesh will not agree to any provisions before it holds an election, the Awami League leader said. Quader described the BNP’s announcement that it would boycott the election again unless Khaleda Zia was released from jail as just ‘cacophonous noise’. “It stinks of conspiracy. We hear hints of violence and sabotage in these words.” “Bangladesh will not hold a conditional election,” he said. “The election will be held according to the constitution. There is no need ...

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Myanmar court charges Reuters journalists

Reuters

MNA Exclusive Desk: A court in Myanmar on Monday charged two jailed Reuters journalists with obtaining secret state documents, moving the landmark press freedom case into its trial stage after six months of preliminary hearings. Yangon district judge Ye Lwin charged reporters Wa Lone, 32, and Kyaw Soe Oo, 28, with breaching of the colonial-era Official Secret Act which carries a maximum penalty of 14 years in prison. The journalists pleaded “not guilty” to the charges. The case has attracted global attention. Some Western diplomats and rights groups say it is a test of progress towards full democracy under the ...

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Rohingya refugees reject UN-Myanmar repatriation agreement

agreement

MNA Exclusive Desk: Rohingya community leaders have rejected an agreement between the United Nations and government of Myanmar for the return of refugees who fled violence in Rakhine state. Having seen a leaked text, the leaders say it does not address their concerns and will not help in the repatriation of the refugees. “The agreement is on the issue of return of the Rohingya to their homes. Strangely, they did not bother to consult the Rohingya community before going for the deal. In the agreement there is no commitment from the Burmese government to fulfill our key demands as a ...

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Rohingya face ‘unimaginable’ atrocities: UN chief

unimaginable

MNA Exclusive Desk: UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has said he heard “unimaginable” accounts of atrocities during a visit on Monday to vast camps in Bangladesh that are home to a million Rohingya refugees who fled violence in Myanmar. Guterres described the situation for the persecuted ethnic minority as “a humanitarian and human rights nightmare”, as he prepared to tour makeshift shelters crammed with people who escaped a Myanmar army operation last year that the UN has called a “textbook case of ethnic cleansing”. “In Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh, I’ve just heard unimaginable accounts of killing and rape from Rohingya refugees who ...

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