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More than 422,000 Rohingya Muslims have fled to Bangladesh from Myanmar since August 25, when attacks by Rohingya militants triggered a military crackdown.

They have seen family members killed and homes set on fire. UNICEF has so far counted more than 1,400 children who have crossed the border with neither parent.

The violence in parts of the state where most of the inhabitants are Rohingya has not spread into the state's predominantly Rakhine Buddhist center but security has been tightened in Sittwe where there are now night-time patrols around Rohingya IDP camps that are cordoned off by police guards. "We will do the same with ARSA and other Rohingya jihadi groups", Imam, who enjoys cabinet status in Bangladesh and is said to be close to Hasina, told IANS in an interview.

The Congress on Thursday asked the government to make public whatever evidence it has of some of the Rohingya refugees having links with IS and take action against them as per Indian laws, but also maintained all of them should not be painted as "terrorists".

The plea said that India has ratified and is a signatory to various conventions that recognise the Principle of "Non-Refoulement', which prohibits deportation of refugees to a country where they may face threat to their lives. They are illegal immigrants", he said while addressing a seminar organised by the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC). Lastly, any boat that somehow manages to land on Thai shores will be seized, and immigration officials will apprehend and put Rohingya men, women and children in indefinite detention.

As existing camps are already full with 300,000 Rohingya fleeing earlier violence, numerous Rohingya have been forced to live in the open air or under flimsy plastic sheets.

Thai authorities have for years said they do not want to accept Rohingya refugees.

The Myanmar government, said Boehringer, must also amend its constitution and abolish discriminatory laws to give rights and citizenship to the oppressed minorities.

Asserting that the Rohingya issue was very sensitive and the government's blanket approach will not help sort out matters, the Congress on Monday demanded that the government take all across the political spectrum into confidence on the matter.

The UN has said that the Rohingya are one of the most persecuted minorities in the world.

Aid workers said thousands of Rohingya were drenched by the return of the monsoon after a respite of a few days.

Police have said they were arrested on suspicion of espionage - a charge rejected by the pair's lawyers. "We were drenched", she told AFP.

Batting for human rights as a noble concept, he said it should not be misused for vested interest. In this context, he said, Bangladesh was facing trouble on account of influx of the Rohingya.


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