India Hands Over 7 Illegal Rohingyas To Myanmar, UN Condemns As A Violation Of International Law

| October 4 , 2018 , 15:03 IST

A total of 7 Rohingya Muslims who have been in India since 2012 and served jail terms for illegal entry have been handed over to Myanmar authorities on Thursday after the deportation formalities were completed. 

While the Myanmar authorities are reportedly satisfied with the documentation of those being deported, the United Nation condemned India's decision for deporting them, calling it a violation of international law.

The Rohingya community from Myanmar's Rakhine state have been facing widespread persecution after they were declared citizen-less, resulting in members of the community fleeing in mass numbers from Myanmar.

"Given the ethnic identity of the men, this is a flagrant denial of their right to protection and could amount to refoulement," said Tendayi Achiume, the UN Special Rapporteur on racism.

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She added that the Indian government has an "international legal obligation" to acknowledge the "institutionalised discrimination, persecution, hate and gross human rights violations these people have faced in their country of origin and provide them the necessary protection". 

According to estimates, there are around 40,000 people from the Rohingya community in India, out of which 16,000 are registered with the UN refugee agency. India has in the past generally accepted refugees, however, the NDA-led central government has taken a firm stand against the Rohingyas claiming in a submission to the Supreme Court that the Rohingyas are a threat to national security and have connections with terrorist groups.

United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres called for India to use its influence with Myanmar for reconciliation of the Rohingya matter.

"I believe that countries like India that have really good relations with Myanmar are in a good place to put all possible pressure, like China, like others, on Myanmar to do this kind of investments and to create the conditions for people to go back," he said.