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UN seeks 'massive' help for Rohingya fleeing Myanmar 'ethnic cleansing'

UN seeks 'massive' help for Rohingya fleeing Myanmar 'ethnic cleansing'

Persecution of the Rohingya, reviled as illegal immigrants by the majority Buddhist population in Myanmar, has caused much anger in Malaysia and across the Muslim world.

Without offering proof, Myanmar has contended that Rohingya insurgents and departing villagers destroyed their own villages.

The Government of Bangladesh has charged Myanmar with violating its air space on three occasions this month and reportedly warned Yangon that such acts of provocation can lead to strained bilateral ties between the two countries.

He also urged the international community to provide whatever assistance they could.

A statement issued by the ministry last Saturday noted that it was also concerned about the "outflow of refugees from that region". Highly traumatised, they are arriving malnourished and injured after walking for days, a spokesperson said.

"The percentage of children is astounding, all these people that need to be helped now", Dujarric said.

In the statement, the first the UN's most powerful body has made in nine years on the situation in Rakhine State, the 15-member council acknowledged militant attacks on Myanmar security forces but "condemned the subsequent violence", and called for "immediate steps to end the violence in Rakhine".

More than 300,000 Rohingya have poured into Bangladesh since the latest flare-up in violence on August 25, adding to around 300,000 refugees already living in Bangladesh, close to the border with Myanmar.

Suu Kyi has been repeatedly criticised over her response to the crisis, particularly given her previous work as a defender of human rights which won her the Nobel Peace Prize.

Earlier this week, the Trump administration called for protection of civilians.

Mr Guterres said he had spoken with Myanmar's leader Aung Suu Kyi, who has been internationally criticised for not taking action to protect the Rohingyas.

"Our field research backs what the satellite imagery has indicated - that the Burmese [Myanmar] military is directly responsible for the mass burning of Rohingya villages in northern Rakhine State", said Phil Robertson, deputy Asia director at Human Rights Watch.

Charu Lata Hogg is an associate fellow of the Asia program at Chatham House, an independent foreign affairs think tank based in London.

Bangladesh authorities are now registering new arrivals and building a massive new camp near the border with Myanmar to accommodate the influx.