Interview with Maungdaw District Administrator

Thar Shwe Oo, Lu Maw Naing
Ethnic populations have been decreasing since 2012,” said Maungdaw District Administrator Ye Htut
The Eleven Media met with Maungdaw District Administrator Ye Htut and have talked on conditions of Rakhine State of terror attacked by ARSA Bengali terrorists. 
Q: How is the current condition in Maungdaw? 
A: Recovery programs had not finished in Maungdaw after the October 9, 2016 attack. Again on August 25, 2017, terrorists committed much more brutal attacks killing many lives. Then, regional situation becomes much worse than before. Currently, it can be said that the security forces have controlled the terror movements and regional security. Enough number of security forces has been appointed here. However, we have to worry about security in some particular places.
Q: Tell me about food aids to the surrounding villages of Maungdaw.
A: Foods are being distributed in different ways as possible as we can. The Rakhine State Chief manages effectively. Foods have been aided to villages so that people won’t have food shortage even if it isn’t enough or surplus. Likewise, roads to Khamaungseik and Taungpyolatwel villages might be opened and bridges will have been repaired in next few days and aids will be given to those villages. 
Q: Journalists witnessed fire setting of Gawduthara. Have the criminals who set the fire arrested? 
A: The union government allowed journalists to have reporting what is really happening on the ground. We assume that they would have got true information regarding with the incident happened on August 25. That was the second time of allowing media to report about the crisis. One foreign media presented in bias on one sided that some ethnics set fire in Gawduthara. We want to point out that they have to have evidence that ethnics are setting fire. Another point is that before the media group arrived at the incident place, we had been informed that six gunshots were heard. More again, it was two hours gap before the media group arrived there. It is impossible that the persons who have been accused of setting fire reached there within the two hours. However, they might be those who starring at the burning. Sound evidence is needed for the argument of ethnics set the fire. If it was true that ethnics were setting fire, they will be taken action in line with the law. We are trying to ensure for the rule of law and the administrative mechanism is re-operating here. Therefore, we won’t tolerate any unlawful actions. We will definitely take actions against the criminals who try to ruin the rule of law no matter those are Muslims, Hindus or Rakhine ethnics or whatsoever. The committed person will be legally charged in line with the law. 
Q: How will you arrange for the Rakhine IDPs and those who run into Bangladesh? 
A: It is true that Muslims are heading to Bangladesh. Likewise, indigenous ethnics are fleeing too. Both communities have fear. They are not the only community having fear. Rakhine ethnics are fear and heading to Sittwe. The ethnics cannot be calmed down though we have fulfilled them their needs. On the other hand, we will take personal data of Bengalis in the recovery period (if they were still in our land) in order to fulfill their needs. However, for those who are going to Bangladesh as their own wish without our instigation, we have to scrutinize to accept them. Our country is a sovereign state. They cannot enter now and then leave as they wish. It is impossible to accept those who have gone to other country as their own desire. 
Q: Who set fire in villages and Maungdaw city? 
A: Regarding with setting fire, they (Bengalis) had set fire villages where ethnics lived in 2012. Concentrate on every Maungdaw crisis happened – 2012 crisis, Ducheeratan crisis in which a police sergeant was killed brutally, 2016 crisis and 2017 crisis. Ethnics had fled and run in all crises. Ethnic population has been reducing and reducing after each crisis and the number of ethnics does not reach back to the same number having in 2012. By that mean, no one indigenous ethnic will be left in those areas. Of course, both communities are affected by crisis. But the ratio is like 98: 02. For example, foods are given to both sides. But the latter will have enough food since its population is 02 while the former group won’t have enough since they are 98 in giving equal quantities. However, the international community is saying that they (Bengalis) are minority. It is very obvious that which group is genuine minority here in the ratio of 98 to 02. As a matter of fact, Muslim population to ethnic population in Buthidaung is 95: 05 and in Maungdaw, it is 98: 02. Why the international are saying 98 is minority? In fact, both 02 populations and 98 populations are running. In such situation, the international community is commenting that 98 percent is minority. I take that those 98 percent is just flaming the fire. They are just making up themselves as the most oppressive group in the world. In fact, it is very obvious that the NGOs have been aiding those 98 percent population for all time. The UNHCR has entered into our country since 1992. It has been so many years. However, if we compare the conditions at the time of 1992 and that of happening no, nothing has been developed except population is massively increased. Notwithstanding, Rakhine ethnic population have been obviously decreasing gradually since 2012. The percentage is much different. They are pretending as minority despite creating riots, terrors and murders. They destroyed their own houses. But in the recovery period, they will have better houses than their own ones. They are telling make-up stories that they have been being treated badly, discriminately and oppressed. That’s it. That’s all.