Rohingya Refugees: The Quest for Identity

N.R. Nithya

Abstract


The Rohingya, who numbered around one million in Myanmar are one of the many ethnic minorities in the country. Rohingya Muslims represent the largest percentage of Muslims in Myanmar, with the majority living in Rakhine state. But the government of Myanmar, a predominantly Buddhist country, denies the Rohingya citizenship and even excluded them from the 2014 census, refusing to recognise them as a people and considers them to be illegal migrants. Tensions between the Rohingya Muslims and the Buddhist majority date back to the beginning of British rule in 1824. The Myanmar government’s refusal to grant Rohingya citizenship status or any legal documentation has effectively made them stateless. Since the 1970s, Rohingians have migrated across the region in significant numbers. The Rohingya people have become a symbol of human rights violations. The present paper is an attempt at analyzing the history, status and problems of Rohingya.

Keywords: Rohingya, Muslim, Myanmar, Ethnicity, Budhism, India


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