Indian police arrest 74 Rohingya migrants in latest crackdown

Indian police arrest 74 Rohingya migrants in latest crackdown

Those arrested include women and children as police ramps action against persecuted community

By Shuriah Niazi

NEW DELHI (AA) – At least 74 Rohingya migrants were arrested in India's northern state of Uttar Pradesh, officials said.

Those arrested included 55 men, 14 women and five children who were living in six districts of the state "after crossing the border illegally," police said in a statement.

A statewide campaign was recently launched against the Rohingya, a persecuted Muslim community driven out from Myanmar.

Hundreds of Rohingyas are living in India with ongoing cases in the Supreme Court against their deportation.

Rohingyas enter India through various routes. But the most common ones are the India-Myanmar-Bangladesh tri-junction and the India-Myanmar border.

Rohingya activists in India have campaigned against the arrests, urging the government to uphold commitments to human rights and democratic credentials.

“We need to protect the dignity of those detained. Rohingyas are human beings, survivors of a genocide, and deserving of basic freedom and dignity given to everyone else,” said Sabber Kyaw Min, the director of the Delhi-based rights group ROHRIngya.

"Those detained have sought asylum in India, not committed any crime. International laws, previous judicial judgements, and India's Constitution are obligated to protect them. Detainees include pregnant women, children, and disabled persons who are suffering violence,” he added.

Tens of thousands of Rohingya were killed and thousands of women and girls were raped when Myanmar forces launched a crackdown on the minority Muslim community in Rakhine State in August 2017. More than 1.2 million Rohingya, described by the UN as the world's most persecuted people, were forced to flee Myanmar.

There are about 40,000 Rohingya in India with 20,000 registered with the UN refugee agency.

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