Muhammad, 11 – Testimony of Rohingya
Published 28th December 2018
While listening to the story of an 11-year-old boy who never showed a smile, I wondered if he was at the age when a teen’s voice changes, as his voice sounded hoarse. To questions, he would spend time thinking before answering. His father was shot dead in front of him, and the boy himself had to shoot bullets before escaping and running away to Bangladesh.
In what state of mind did he cross the river and the mountains?
At the camp he looks after his 6 young brothers, because there are no more adult men in his family. The shelter where they live is nothing more than that of other families, they live in extreme poverty, and there is not even electricity.
(Akiko, Doctors of the World Nurse)
I arrived in Bangladesh on 25th August 2017. I live with my mother and six younger brothers here. I am the eldest son. My biggest concern is that there is no food, especially meat and fish.
In Myanmar, I lived in a village close to the border with Bangladesh.
That day (August 25, 2017), the army came and burned my house. My father was shot by a soldier with a gun and died. I was also shot here, in the abdomen. We couldn’t take care of my wound so we fled right away to Bangladesh. As soon as I arrived in Cox’s Bazar, I was taken to a hospital where I underwent surgery.
When it all happened I was home with my father. But I didn’t die and I am here today.
It’s hot here, I do not like it. I have not even gone to school. At least I have friends. In Myanmar, I also went to a Madrasa, a school that teaches the foundation of Islam. I would like to go to a similar school now.
I want to return to Myanmar, because my father is there. I want to go to his grave.
Now, what I need most is gas in order to cook, then medicine. I have insufficient medicine and it does not work.
I think that the government of Myanmar should give citizenship to Rohingya. Then we could go home.
On our land, we should be able to move freely anywhere as we please, we should be able to study. And finally violence and discrimination should stop.
I have a favour to ask to the government of Japan: help make Myanmar work towards these changes.
My father was an Imam. When I become an adult, I want to become like my father, an Imam, I want to teach the Koran to the little children.