Open letter to Honourable Ban Ki-Moon, UN Secretary General
Honourable Ban Ki-MoonDate 03/07/11
UN Secretary General
Subject: Human rights violation in Chittagong Hill Tracts.
First of all we congratulate you for the 2nd term as an UN Secretary General.
We, Jumma People from Chittagong Hill Tracts(CHT), Bangladesh, like to appeal you to save us from systematic Genocide committed by the Bangladesh Government(BG). CHT is the homeland for the Jumma People. We are physically, ethnically and religiously different from the majority Muslim Bengali People. This is why we are the target for the total annihilation by the BG. Since 1980 countless massacres have been committed by the army and Bengali settlers. In 1992, Logang Massacre, over 700 people were brutally killed, most of them were locked inside the house and set on fire. Still, BG were allowed to get away with such a barbaric crime. No one has tried to bring BG in the International Criminal Court and on top of that the Bangladesh Army has been allowed to serve the UN Peace Keeping Force around the World. What an injustice upon us by the International Community?
We have always provided the name of the army and Bengali settlers who were involved in the heinous crime. But no one has been brought to the justice by the Bangladesh Judiciary System and no one will be. We have no other choice except to appeal to the International Justice Authority.
Our homeland has been invaded by Bengali Muslim settlers. Land grabbing, killing, rape are daily occurrence. Rape has never been a phenomenon in the CHT for the Jumma People, but today our children as small as five years old are victims of rape by the Bengali settlers and armed personnel. Because they know that they are protected by the authority. Today we are outnumbered by the Bengali settlers in our homeland. In 1994 the EU has offered to allocate finance to the BG to resettle the Bengali settlers in their own homeland. But BG rejected the plan. Because they want our land, not the people.
Hundreds of our religious temples and churches were destroyed; burned down to ashes, played football with images of Lord Buddha and monks were killed. Our religious rights were denied .But the International Community is still silent.
In 1972 founder of Bangladesh Seikh Mujibur Rahaman told us to forget our ethnicity and to become Bengali. Today his daughter Prime Minister Seikh Hassina , winner of the UNESCO peace prize said there is no indigenous people in Bangladesh, Bengalis are the indigenous people of Bangladesh. In 2006 the prime minister of Bangladesh Begum Khaleda Zia’s UN mission and High Commission of London said Bangladesh is a homogenous country. So our existence has been denied time and again. To survive with our own identity we need self determination. CHT always enjoyed a special status since the colonial time. No outsiders were allowed to settle in the CHT. CHT is the land for the Jumma People.
After signing the Peace Accord in 1997 violations against the unarmed Jumma People increased and BG has no intention to implement it at all.
Just in the last eight months, 600 homes were burned down by the Bengali settlers with the help of the army. A baby and its grandfather were burned alive in their house; hundreds of Jumma People were beaten indiscriminately. People are still living without a roof and without any proper help. We can not take the inhumanity and barbarism any longer. No other indigenous people in the world are suffering so much brutality by their own government as we are Jumma people in the CHT.
According to the UN rapporteur Mr Lars- Anders Baer, one third of the Bangladesh army were deployed in the CHT where there is no arm conflict at all. There is one armed personnel for every eight Jumma People, it is clearly an excessive presence of army against the unarmed Jumma people.
We urge the UN to take action over this serious issue immediately.
After 30 years of campaigning for peace in the CHT, Mr Stephen Corry, Director of Survival International said “Bangladesh Government does not understand the language of diplomacy”.
Our request to UN:
- Deploy Peace Keeping Force in the CHT
- Send a special rapporteur to investigate all massacres and bring Khaleda Zia, Sheik Hasina and General Ershad to the International Criminal Court.
- Arrange a referendum for self determination like East Timor, Ache, Kosovo, South Sudan.
Jumma People UK
1. Report of Mr.Lars- Anders Baer
2. List of Massacres
3. Video documents link
a) Al jazeera
b) Survival International
c) Terrified Voices Part 1
d) Terrified Voices Part 2
4. Amnesty International report
1. International Criminal Court, Hague
2. UNESCO, France
4. Mrs.Hillary Clinton
5. Foreign Minister, UK
6. Foreign Minister, Japan
7. Foreign Minister, Denmark
8. Foreign Minister, Germany
9. Foreign Minister, France
10. Foreign Minister, Korea
11. Foreign Minister, Guatemala
12. Foreign Minister, Spain
13. Foreign Minister, EU
14. Foreign Minister, Australia
15. Foreign Minister, Argentina
16. Foreign Minister, Canada
17. Al jazeera
1. Genocide in the Chittagong Hill Tracts – by Dr Wolfgang Mey
2. The Charge of Genocide – by Organizing Committee , CHT Campaign, The Netherlands
3. Ethnic Cleansing in CHT – by Ambassador Saradindu Shekhar Chakma
4. Unlawful Killings in the CHT – by Amnesty International
5. Life is not ours - by CHT Commission