Myanmar authorities sentenced more than 100 Rohingya to between two and five years in jail for trying to leave the country without “any legal documents,” a state newspaper reported.
Some 112 Rohingyas – including 12 children – were sentenced in Myanmar to between two and five years in prison for trying to leave the country without “any legal documents”.
A Bogale court handed down the sentence on Friday against the group, which was detained in late December while trying to reach Malaysia, ‘Global New Light of Myanmar’ reported, citing local police.
The convicted minors, five of whom are under 13, were transferred on Sunday to a juvenile education center near the commercial capital Yangon, official media reported, without elaborating.
The Rohingya Muslim minority, pejoratively referred to as “Bengalis” in the Burmese media, faces widespread discrimination in the Buddhist-majority country.
Although they have been in the country for generations, they are still considered trespassers in Myanmar, where they do not have citizenship or the same rights as other people, including the right to travel.
A case against Myanmar, accused of genocide by The Gambia, is currently before the highest court of the United Nations.
Hundreds of thousands of Rohingya Muslims fled a bloody crackdown by the Burmese army in 2017 to seek refuge in camps in neighboring Bangladesh.
Thousands of them -2,000 according to the UN in 2022- risk their lives every year in their attempts to reach Malaysia or Indonesia by sea.
A wooden boat with nearly 200 Rohingya on board, most of them women and children, docked on the west coast of Indonesia on Sunday, the fifth of its kind according to local authorities.
This article was adapted from its original in French
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