Myanmar govt repatriates 1st Rohingya family from 700000 refugees

UN Security Council envoys to visit Bangladesh Myanmar

The refugees have reported killings, rape and arson on a large scale.

Burma has strongly denied that allegation - saying the army had waged a legitimate operation against insurgent Rohingya militants who had attacked more than two dozen police posts and an army base in August. The United States government and the United Nations describe the violence against the Rohingya as "ethnic cleansing".

According to the Rohingya Blogger, however, the individuals in the photos are the family members of the administrator of Taung Pyo Latya, the designated entry point for returning refugees.

The Rohingya exodus has created a humanitarian crisis in Bangladesh, a small, poor country that is one of the most densely populated in the world.

"Five members of a Muslim family...came to the Taungpyoletwea reception centre in Rakhine state this morning", the Myanmar government said in a statement late on Saturday.

Myanmar and Bangladesh agreed in January to complete a voluntary repatriation of the refugees in two years.

Images accompanying the social media post on Saturday showed five individuals receiving identification cards - which do not grant citizenship - from uniformed Myanmar officials, and getting medical help and living provisions from health and social workers.

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According to the Myanmar statement, immigration authorities provided the family with national verification cards, a form of ID that falls short of citizenship and has been rejected by Rohingya leaders who want full rights.

Myanmar has said it is ready to receive the refugees, with one of its ministers this week telling refugees in Bangladesh to set aside the past and prepare to "go back to your own residences".

The website claimed after conducting its own investigation that family entered the border area, where the refugees are camped out, to try "persuade" other Rohingya families to return to Myanmar.

Many Rohingya refugees say they fear returning to a country where they saw their relatives murdered by soldiers and Buddhist vigilantes who drove them from their homes.

Although the Rohingya have lived in Burma for many generations, most Burmese consider them unwanted immigrants from neighboring Bangladesh and refer to them as "Bengalis", a term the Rohingya consider derogatory.

Last week, the most senior United Nations official to visit Myanmar this year, Assistant Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs Ursula Mueller, said the conditions in Myanmar were not conducive to the return of the refugees.

Several boats with Rohingya from parts of the violence-torn Rakhine state have left Myanmar in recent months.

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