The Marriage Tree and the Rohingya
Background Information:

The Marriage Tree

The nightmarish, noir plight of the Rohingya from Burma who have escaped prosecution at home and ended up as refugees in Thailand features as part of the story in The Marriage Tree. There was a reason for choosing the Rohingya. Part of the responsibility of a novelist is to bring hidden worlds to readers. More importantly, the Rohingya are a truly friendless people. They have suffered the most severe plights humans can endure, from murder, rape, destruction of their homes and livelihood to a general indifference and neglect.

A number of readers the Vincent Calvino novels were unaware of this ethnic minority that has lived in Burma for generations and has been subject to some of the most brutal repression imaginable. The Burmese government has not done what a government should to protect the Rohingya from slaughter.

Many Rohingya men, women and children have fled Burma with few belongings, fearing for their lives and their loved ones’.

They pay human smugglers to get them out of Burma and into neighbouring countries, including Thailand. The repression and danger faced by the Rohingyas does not end once they left Burma as displaced people. There have been multiple press reports about Rohingya’s small boats pushed out to sea, Rohingya being sold to rubber plantations, canning factories, and fishing boats from illegal refugee camps in Thailand.

Wikipedia has this summary:

“The Rohingya people have been described as ‘among the world’s least wanted’ and ‘one of the world’s most persecuted minorities.’ They have been denied Burmese citizenship since a 1982 citizenship law was enacted They are not allowed to travel without official permission, are banned from owning land and are required to sign a commitment not to have more than two children.” Link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rohingya

The Rohingya are the face of modern slavery and savage displacement and murder.

“The Burmese army and police have been accused of targeting Rohingya Muslims through mass arrests and arbitrary violence… Over the years, thousands of Rohingyas have also fled to Thailand. There are roughly 111,000 refugees housed in 9 camps along the Thai-Myanmar border.”

In The Marriage Tree, the narrative flows through the refugee camps, Burmese community and the fate of the Rohingya. This is the first novel of mine to take up the story of the Rohingya. It is one of the biggest human rights stories of our time and sadly unreported to the larger world.

Here are a selected number of background articles written about the human rights violations and desperate conditions of the Rohingya.

UN report on genocide of Rohingya (Asia Times)

Burma: End ‘Ethnic Cleansing’ of Rohingya Muslims (Human Rights Watch)

Burma: Investigate New Killings of Rohingya (Human Rights Watch)

Chronology for Rohingya (Arakanese) in Burma (Refword, UNHCR)

Burma Rejects UN Resolution on Rohingya Muslims (Voice of America)

Returning Rohingya refugees to Burma from Thailand (Time Magazine)

Deportation from Thailand (BBC)

Rescue from illegal camp in Thailand (Reuters)

Burmese concentration camps for Rohingya (Time Magazine)

Reports of massacres of Rohingya in Burma (Time Magazine)

The Rohingya people: the most suffering people on earth (Salem News)

The Rohingya people may face another round of genocide (World Bulletin)

Rape and human trafficking (The Huffington Post)

Defamation charges against Australian journalist reporting on alleged Thai Navy involvement in Rohingya smuggling (Phuketwan) (Phuketwan)

 

 

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