This provides some background information on the author and the circumstances behind the published article Letter from A Rohingyan in Myanmar:
The author is a medical doctor in her thirties, who is currently undertaking post-graduate study at the Australian National University. As mentioned in the letter, her father is Rohingyan and her mother Buddhist. She chose to use her Rohingyan name, Maria Begum, as using her official Burmese name would no doubt cause her problems.
Maria has deferred a semester to return to Yangon, Myanmar to take care of her father who is suffering from liver cancer. She receives constant news from her uncles and grandmother who live in the Buthidaung township in Rakhine state.
“I heard that all Muslims villages in Maungdaw are torched by the Rakhine extremists and soldiers from Myanmar military. and many people are fleeing every day as they were forced to flee by the military,” she told AMUST.
“Many Muslims in Buthidaung and Maungdaw are not able to find foods as Rakhine Buddhists are not selling goods to Rohingya. People who not fleeing are only surviving on their own livelihoods. But most of them are preparing to flee to Bangladesh as they can’t access any humanitarian aids. People who are living in the Sittwe IDP (internally displaced persons) camps are also in the critical situation as they are trapped inside these camps. They need to be provided humanitarian help and protection,” she added.