Exposing Statelessness: Understanding the Plight of Burma’s Rohingya

For decades, the xenophobic military junta in Burma has refused to recognize the Rohingya, a distinct Muslim ethnic minority living in western Burma, as one of the country’s many ethnic nationalities. As a result the Rohingya have suffered human rights violations, and a vast majority of them have been denied official recognition of citizenship.

Using Saiful Huq Omi’s photographs and the recent Physicians for Human Rights report Stateless and Starving: Persecuted Rohingya Flee Burma and Starve in Bangladesh as a point of departure, this event  explores the impact of statelessness on the Rohingya.


  • Maureen Aung-Thwin, Director, Burma Project/Southeast Asia Initiative, Open Society Institute
  • Maung Tun Khin, founding member, Burmese Rohingya Organisation UK
  • Saiful Huq Omi, Photographer, "The Disowned and the Denied: Stateless Rohingya Refugees in Bangladesh"
  • Richard Sollom, Director of Research and Investigations, Armed Conflict and Public Health, Physicians for Human Rights
  • Rupert Skilbeck, Litigation Director, Open Society Justice Initiative

The event is cosponsored by the Open Society Institute Documentary Photography Project, Burma Project/Southeast Asia Initiative, and Justice Initiative.

Saiful Huq Omi’s exhibition “The Disowned and the Denied: Stateless Rohingya Refugees in Bangladesh” is part of the Moving Walls 17 photography exhibition at the Open Society Institute.

Date: May 27, 2010
Time: 6:007:30 p.m.

OSI-New York

Maureen Aung-Thwin, Maung Tun Khin, Saiful Huq Omi, Rupert Skilbeck, and Richard Sollom