But when Saudi Arabia sends their Rohingya Muslims back to Bangladesh, there’s barely a peep from the usual Muslim-sympathizers in the West.
Aljazeera (h/t Maurice) Saudi Arabia is planning to deport 250 Rohingya men to Bangladesh, in what will be the second forced deportation by Riyadh this year, an activist group has told Al Jazeera.
Saudi Arabia is home to almost 300,000 Rohingya, according to Nay San Lwin, campaign coordinator for the Free Rohingya Coalition, adding that the men faced imprisonment in Bangladesh upon their arrival.
“Majority of these Rohingya have residency permits and can live in Saudi Arabia legally,” Nay San Lwin told Al Jazeera. “But these detainees, who are being kept in the Shumaisi detention centre [in Jeddah], have not been treated like their fellow Rohingya. Instead, they are being treated like criminals.”
Nay San Lwin added that many of the Rohingya entered Saudi Arabia after obtaining passports belonging to countries like Pakistan, Bangladesh, India and Nepal through smugglers via fake documents.
Some of the detainees held at the Shumaisi detention centre said they had lived in the kingdom their entire lives and had been sent to the facility after Saudi police found them without identification papers.
Around one million Rohingya fled to neighbouring Bangladesh in late 2017 when the Myanmar army launched a brutal campaign against them. The UN accused government soldiers and local Buddhists of massacring families, burning hundreds of villages and carrying out mass gang rapes.
Myanmar denies the allegations, saying security forces are battling armed rebels. (See links below)
However, many of the refugees housed in the cramped and unsanitary camps in Bangladesh (their native country) said they feared returning to Myanmar without guaranteed rights such as citizenship, access to healthcare and freedom of movement.