Seven Ethnic Rakhines Killed After Myanmar Police Fire on Protest Crowd

Rohingya Muslims return to Myanmar puts them at 'grave risk', say UK MPs

Seven people have been killed and 12 injured by Myanmar police when it opened fire on demonstrators with live bullets in Rakhine State.

Tuesday's meeting at Myanmar's capital Naypyitaw was the first by a joint working group set up to hammer out the details of the November repatriation agreement.

But the clashes came on the same day as a repatriation agreement was signed between Myanmar and Bangladesh to start the return of some 655,000 Rohingya refugees from squalid camps back over the border. Myanmar will then shelter the Rohingya in temporary accommodations while rebuilding houses for them.

Naypyidaw, Jan. 18 (IANS): Myanmar said on Thursday that it has asked Bangladesh to arrest and extradite more than 1,300 Rohingyas suspected of taking part in a rebel assault against government checkpoints in Rakhine state in August past year.

Under the current agreement, about 156,000 Rohingya would be repatriated in two years - far short of the 650,000 who have taken refuge in Bangladesh.

"The worst would be to move these people from camps in Bangladesh to camps in Myanmar, keeping an artificial situation for a long time and not allowing for them to regain their normal lives", said Guterres, who was previously the head of UNHCR for 10 years.

A spokesperson from the un high commission for refugees said Myanmar also needed to address the underlying causes of the crisis and that refugees should only return when they feel it is safe for them.

The Rohingya, described by the United Nations as the world's most persecuted people, have faced heightened fears of attack since dozens were killed in communal violence in 2012. Myanmar's army described it as "clearance operations" against terrorists, but the UN and the United States have called it "ethnic cleansing".

"Myanmar has reiterated its commitment to stop outflow of Myanmar residents to Bangladesh", it said.

Aye Maung is a parliament representative elected from Ann township constituency of Rakhine state.

"Without investigation, transparency, and accountability for crimes against the Rohingya, any discussion of repatriation is a nonstarter". At least 30 people have died from the disease, .

The killings have been condemned by Amnesty International, with James Gomez, the rights group's director for Southeast Asia, saying it is a clear case of excessive use of force.

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