Geneva, (IINA) - Nearly half a million Rohingya from Myanmar have been displaced due to decades of oppression in southwestern Myanmar, according to a new UN report.
The report, published by the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHRC) to mark World Refugee Day on June 20, says by the end of 2016 the number of Rohingya refugees rose to 490,300, up from 451,800 the previous year.
The report showed that Bangladesh hosts the largest number of Rohingya, 276,200, with 243,000 of them living in a refugee-like situation.
However, the government of Bangladesh estimates the population to be between 300,000 and 500,000, the UNHRC says.
The Rohingya minority is one of the most oppressed communities in the world, as they have been suffering from a state-run slow-motion cleansing operation in the southwestern Myanmar's state of Rakhine, according to Human Rights Watch.
The southeastern city of Cox's Bazar in Bangladesh hosts Rohingya refugees in two registered and three unregistered camps. Besides Bangladesh, the countries such as Pakistan, Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, and Saudi Arabia also host Rohingya refugees.
Tens of thousands of Rohingya have fled their homes in Rakhine since last October, when Myanmar's military launched a crackdown whose brutality has drawn international criticism.
Rohingya have fled Rakhine -- one of the poorest states in Myanmar -- in droves for decades, with a new wave of migrations occurring since mid-2012 after communal violence broke out between ethnic Buddhists and the Muslim Rohingya minority.
Security forces have been accused of gang-rape, killings, beatings, disappearances and burning villages in the Maungdaw area of northern Rakhine since October.
The Rohingya in impoverished Rakhine have been effectively denied citizenship by a 1982 nationality law enacted by Ne Win, a military strongman who staged a coup and whose 1962-1988 leadership saw the adoption of xenophobic policies.
Source: International Islamic News Agency