Many Rohingya in Myanmar's camps forced to miss Eid
Displaced Rohingya celebrated Eid on Tuesday by pouring into a mosque outside Sittwe, the capital of Myanmar’s western Rakhine state, for morning prayers – after which choirs sang Islamic songs and many men prayed at the graves of loved ones. Aung Win, a local community leader and activist, says that despite celebrating the holiday, “we are not happy in our hearts.” In 2012, ethnic violence erupted in Sittwe, leaving up to 280 dead and 140,000 displaced. After the riots many of Myanmar’s Muslims refrained from celebrating Eid as a gesture of solidarity with the Rohingya, and also because of fears the festival could spark more violence. Since then, in the face of desperate conditions, Rohingya have kept tradition alive in their displaced persons camps. “Many people are languishing in these camps,” Aung Win laments.