Day 25: The Rohingya
Series: 30 Days of Prayer for Muslims and Christians – 2016 Ramadan
Presented in American Sign Language, no voice interpretation.
The homeland of the Rohingya people lies on the border between the South Asian and the Indo-Malaysian regions. It is located between huge ethnic, linguistic, religious and political blocks, and there are some specific challenges facing this people group.
The Muslim Rohingyas have been living in the northern part of the Arakan Mountains on the cost of the Bengal Gulf for centuries. Much of that time they lived peacefully with their mostly Buddhist neighbor peoples. When Burma (known as Myanmar today) gained independence in 1948, the Rohingyas faced an overwhelming majority population of Buddhists. In the beginning, they were recognized as a minority with equal rights. But in 1982, the military dictatorship issued a law that didn’t accept the Rohingya people as citizens any more. That left their two million people as one of the largest ethnic groups in the world without recognized citizenship.
In 2012, a violent turmoil broke out between Buddhists and Rohingyas. Hundreds of people were killed and many Rohingya villages destroyed. Since then, 100,000 Rohingyas have been kept in refugee camps or ghettos – often only a few miles from their original place of residence. Hundreds of thousands have fled into neighboring countries and beyond, and sadly, they often fall victim to human trafficking or end up in criminal activity.
The Rohingyas are on a journey into an uncertain future – uprooted and without a homeland, without advocates, and without hope. But God “does not forget the cry of the afflicted” (Psalm 9:13 ESV). In some places, Rohingyas have found hope and joy through faith in Jesus Christ. But most of these precious people still have no opportunity to hear the gospel.
– Pray for justice in the resolution of this conflict between Buddhists and the Rohingyas.
– Pray that the Rohingyas can live in peace in their homeland and the areas they flee to.
– Pray for global efforts that are trying to give the Rohingyas the opportunity to thrive, live in dignity and offer their children a better future.