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Fresh arson attack in Rakhine state hours before Rohingya repatriation from Bangladesh

Thursday January 25, 2018 10:32 PM, UNA-OIC

Rohingya homes burned

As the return of Rohingya refugees from Bangladesh to Myanmar is nearing, arson attacks on the Muslim minority homes in northern Rakhine state have been renewed by extremist Buddhists.

Residents of a village west of Buthidaung township told Arakan News Agency that they woke up to the smell of a huge fire in the early hours of Wednesday, and were surprised by fire outbreaks in three houses belonging to Rohingya families.

They said when they tried to put off the fires, six extremist Buddhists from another village were found nearby.

The villagers noted that the Buddhists fled the fire scene when asked why they were there at this time, which some people accounted as evidence of their involvement in the incident. They added that the three houses were completely burned down.

It is noteworthy that 100 houses were burned just three days ago in Myanmar’s border village of Tombru.

The fire occurred the evening before Bangladesh was due to start repatriating hundreds of thousands of Rohingya refugees to Rakhine state under an agreement with Myanmar.

The repatriation process was to begin Tuesday and last two years, but was delayed as Bangladesh conceded both sides were not ready for the huge undertaking.


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