Rohingya Detention Camps

Approximately 130,000 Rohingya have been confined to open-air detention camps in Myanmar’s central Rakhine State since being displaced by ethnic cleansing in 2012. For eight years, the Myanmar government has maintained the Rohingya’s internment and segregation, violating their fundamental right to return home. They are denied freedom of movement in what amounts to arbitrary and discriminatory deprivation of liberty. Severe restrictions on humanitarian relief, including food and medicine, as well as little education; decrepit housing; restrictions on livelihoods; and highly restricted access to emergency health procedures have been responsible for increased morbidity and mortality in the camps. The squalid and oppressive conditions imposed on the Rohingya amount to the crimes against humanity of persecution, apartheid, and severe deprivation of liberty.

Myanmar has used Covid-19 response measures as a pretext to harass and extort Rohingya in the detention camps in central Rakhine State.

Rohingya in the camps have consistently asked to return to their places of origin, which the Myanmar government has long denied. The government has initiated measures to “close” the camps, but its plans entail constructing permanent structures in current camp locations, further entrenching the Rohingya’s status as permanent detainees. In 2020, the government began “closing” Kyauk Ta Lone camp in Kyaukpyu, constructing shelters on isolated and flood-prone land, again rejecting the requests of Rohingya and Kaman displaced people to return home.

The report originally published by Human Rights Watch