A state-led massacre triggers an exodus of Rohingyas from Myanmar

Many more did not make it

ACROSS the border, inside Myanmar, columns of smoke can be seen rising at dawn; each evening dusk reveals the fires at their bases. All week villages have been burning in northern Rakhine state, home of the Rohingyas, a persecuted Muslim minority. Refugees have been fleeing to Bangladesh across rice paddies, along muddy mountain paths and in boats over the Naf river, which divides the two countries. They are fleeing systematic violence from the Burmese army and armed mobs of Rakhines, another local ethnic group. The UN has counted 164,000 who have already arrived in Bangladesh; many more are thought to be on their way.

At the end of the Myanmar-Bangladesh Friendship Road, backed against the border fence near the town of Ghumdum, is a rapidly growing, makeshift camp holding some 5,000 new refugees. A Bangladeshi border guard points to a nearby hillock where a fire is raging; he says the Burmese army is burning down houses. Nurul...

Read More