‘There Are No Homes Left’: Rohingya Tell of Rape, Fire and Death in Myanmar
KUTUPALONG CAMP, Bangladesh — When the Myanmar military closed in on the village of Pwint Phyu Chaung, everyone had a few seconds to make a choice.
Noor Ankis, 25, chose to remain in her house, where she was told to kneel to be beaten, she said, until soldiers led her to the place where women were raped. Rashida Begum, 22, chose to plunge with her three children into a deep, swift-running creek, only to watch as her baby daughter slipped from her grasp.
25岁的努尔·安基斯(Noor Ankis)选择了留在家里。她说，在家中，她被命令跪下并遭到殴打，直到士兵把她带去一个地方，在那里，很多女性遭到强奸。22岁的拉希达·别古姆(Rashida Begum)选择带着三个孩子跳进一条水流湍急的深河里，不料却眼睁睁地看着最小的女儿从自己手中滑脱。
Sufayat Ullah, 20, also chose the creek. He stayed in the water for two days and finally emerged to find that soldiers had set his family home on fire, leaving his mother, father and two brothers to asphyxiate inside.
These accounts and others, given over the last few days by refugees who fled Myanmar and are now living in Bangladesh, shed light on the violence that has unfolded in Myanmar in recent months as security forces there carry out a brutal counterinsurgency campaign.
Their stories, though impossible to confirm independently, generally align with reports by human rights organizations that the military entered villages in northern Rakhine State shooting at random, set houses on fire with rocket launchers, and systematically raped girls and women. At least 1,500 homes were razed, according to an analysis of satellite images by Human Rights Watch.
他们的故事尽管无法独立证实，但总体上与各人权组织的报告一致。相关报告称，军队进入若开邦北部的村庄时随意开枪、用火箭筒点燃房屋，并有组织地强奸女童和妇女。从人权观察组织(Human Rights Watch)对卫星图片进行的分析来看，至少1500座房屋被夷为平地。
The campaign, which has moved south in recent weeks, seems likely to continue until Myanmar’s government is satisfied that it has fully disarmed the militancy that has arisen among the Rohingya, a Muslim ethnic group that has been persecuted for decades in majority-Buddhist Myanmar.
“There is a risk that we haven’t seen the worst of this yet,” said Matthew Smith of Fortify Rights, a nongovernmental organization focusing on human rights in Southeast Asia. “We’re not sure what the state security forces will do next, but we do know attacks on civilians are continuing.”
“有一个危险是，我们还没看到最严重的情况，”重点关注东南亚人权状况的非政府组织巩固人权(Fortify Rights)的马修·史密斯(Matthew Smith)说。“我们不确定国家安全部队接下来会干什么，但我们的确知道对平民的攻击仍在继续。”
A commission appointed by Myanmar’s government last week denied allegations that its military was committing genocide in the villages, which have been closed to Western journalists and human rights investigators. Officials have said Rohingya forces are setting fire to their own houses and have denied most charges of human rights abuses, with the exception of a beating that was captured on video. Myanmar’s leader, Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, the recipient of a Nobel Peace Prize, has been criticized for failing to respond more forcefully to the violence.
缅甸政府上周任命的一个委员会否认了该国军队在相关村庄制造种族灭绝的指控。那些村庄已对西方记者和人权调查人士关闭。官员称罗辛亚族的部队自己点火烧房子，并否认了大部分侵犯人权的指控，仅被视频记录下来的一次殴打事件除外。缅甸领导人、诺贝尔和平奖获得者昂山素季(Daw Aung San Suu Kyi)因未能更有力地应对暴力而受到指责。
The crackdown began after an attack on three border posts in Rakhine State in October, in which nine police officers were killed. The attack is believed to have been carried out by an until-then-unknown armed Rohingya insurgent group.
The military campaign, which the government describes as a “clearing” operation, has largely targeted civilians, human rights groups say. It has sent an estimated 65,000 Rohingya fleeing across the border to Bangladesh, according to the International Organization for Migration.
政府称这场军事行动是一场“清除”运动。人权团体称，该运动主要针对平民。据国际移民组织(International Organization for Migration)称，行动估计已导致6.5万罗辛亚人越过边境，进入孟加拉国。
“They started coming in like the tide,” said Dudu Miah, a Rohingya refugee who is chairman of the management committee at the Leda refugee camp, near the border with Myanmar. “They were acting crazy. They were a mess. They were saying, ‘They’ve killed my father, they’ve killed my mother, they’ve beaten me up.’ They were in disarray.”
Soldiers were attacking villages just across the Naf River, which separates Myanmar from Bangladesh, so close that Bangladeshis could see columns of smoke rise from burning villages on the other side, said Nazir Ahmed, the imam of a mosque that caters to Rohingyas.
He said it was true that some Rohingya, enraged by years of mistreatment by Myanmar forces, had organized themselves into a crude militant force, but that Myanmar had dramatically exaggerated its proportions and seriousness.
Rohingyas are “frustrated, and they are picking up sticks and making a call to defend themselves,” he said. “Now, if they find a farmer who has a machete at home, they say, ‘You are engaged in terrorism.’”
An analysis released last month by the International Crisis Group took a serious view of the new militant group, which it says is financed and organized by Rohingya émigrés in Saudi Arabia. Further violence, it warned, could accelerate radicalization among the Rohingya, who could become willing instruments of transnational jihadist groups.
国际危机组织(International Crisis Group)上月发布的一份分析报告很重视这个新出现的激进团体，称其得到流亡沙特阿拉伯的罗辛亚人的资助，接受他们的安排。报告警告称，进一步的暴力可能会加剧罗辛亚人的激进化，他们可能会心甘情愿地被跨国圣战组织利用。
In interviews in and around the Kutupalong and Leda refugee camps here, Rohingya who fled Myanmar in recent weeks said that military personnel initially went house to house seeking adult men, and then proceeded to rape women and burn homes. Many new arrivals are from Kyet Yoepin, a village where 245 buildings were destroyed during a two-day sweep in mid-October, according to Human Rights Watch.
Muhammad Shafiq, who is in his mid-20s, said he was at home with his family when he heard gunfire. Soldiers in camouflage banged on the door, then shot at it, he said. When he let them in, he said, “they took the women away, and lined up the men.”
Mr. Shafiq said that when a soldier grabbed his sister’s hand, he lunged at him, fearful the soldier intended to rape her, and was beaten so severely that the soldiers left him for dead. Later, he bolted with one of his children and was grazed by a soldier’s bullet on his elbow. He crawled for an hour on his hands and knees through a rice field, then watched, from a safe vantage point, as troops set fire to what remained of Kyet Yoepin.
“There are no homes left,” he said. “Everything is burned.”
Jannatul Mawa, 25, who is from the same village, said she crawled toward the next village overnight, passing the shadowy forms of dead and wounded neighbors.
“Some were shot, some were killed with a blade,” she said. “Wherever they could find people, they were killing them.”