Mixed Reasons – The Demonization of Aung San Suu Kyi / Co-authored with Krishnan Srinivasan (former foreign secretary of India)

The Rakhine state of Myanmar and the contiguous region in Bangladesh are experiencing a major humanitarian crisis, with, according to Bangladesh, a million Rohingya Muslim refugees forced to flee from Rakhine into Bangladesh. That number would comprise nearly all the Rohingyas, and one third of the previous population of Rakhine. Sectarian violence in Rakhine between Muslims and Buddhists has a long history and is a consequence of inward migration during colonial times and subsequent attempts by local Muslim political groups to either join East Pakistan or create a separate homeland for themselves in northern Rakhine at the time of Burmese independence. Recently, as Myanmar’s military rule witnessed relative dilution, competitive democratic politics made tentative progress and identity politics proliferated on social media, historical fault-lines and related paranoia acquired new salience, prompting a spike in sectarian violence.

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