top of page

Double vision: dark times for the Rohingya echo past horrors – in pictures

In this photography project, Never Again, every picture combines two images – one of Myanmar’s Rohingya Muslims superimposed on that of a different tragedy, from the Armenian genocide through the Balkans war to current-day refugees

A young boy inside the Rohingya refugee camp in Bangladesh. More than 74,000 Rohingya have fled from neighbouring Myanmar since October 2016. In the superimposed image, the hands are those of an Afghan asylum seeker, living in an abandoned brick factory in Subotica, near the Serbia-Hungary border, in 2015

Sajida has been living in Kutupalong refugee camp in Bangladesh, but wants to go to Ireland to be with a friend there. ‘Our future depends on UNHCR, which can relocate us to another country,’ she says. The other image shows a destroyed building in Sarajevo. The siege of the city was the longest in modern history – almost four years – during which more than 10,000 people died

Abdul Rahim is a refugee from Myanmar. He lives in Bangladesh, in Naziratek village, near Cox’s Bazar. Unregistered asylum seekers living outside the camps do not hold refugee status or have the right to food rations. Rahim’s son, Mohammed Yasin, tried to reach Malaysia by boat, where the situation for refugees is better. But he was captured by mafia and his family had no money to pay a ransom. They have not heard from him since. The other image is of the ship El Venizelos, used to take refugees and migrants to Athens from the Greek islands

In Myanmar, a woman walks inside a camp for displaced people. In the superimposed image, in Yerevan, Armenia, another women cleans the monument built in memory of the 1.5 million people killed in thegenocide in what is now Turkey, from 1915 to 1917

A gravestone in Sittwe city, one of the very few reminders of its former residents – Rohingya. The Muslim minority were forcibly displaced, ending up in camps inside and outside the country. The layered image is of a soldier going to the frontline in the dispute over Nagorno-Karabakh, a region in the South Caucasus, which has seen a bloody conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan from the late 1980s to the present day

A Burmese man stands next to the ruins of his former neighbours’ home, after the Rohingya family who lived there were forcibly taken to a camp in Myanmar. In the other image, of Mariupol, Ukraine, the inscription on the wall remembers a soldier who lives there but is on duty at the eastern front. It reads: ‘We are waiting for you’

Children play in a Rohyinga camp in Bangladesh. Between 300,000 and 500,000 Rohingya are estimated to be living in the country. The superimposed image is of gates in the town of Góra Kalwaria, Poland, a site where many Jews were shot dead during the second world war. Bullet traces can still be seen. The gates were relocated to the city’s Jewish cemetery

Rohingya children play in abandoned buildings in a Myanmar camp. The other image is from Moldova – a statue of a Soviet soldier. Conflict over the breakaway enclave of Transnistria has made the former Soviet republic one of the poorest countries in Europe

Dala Banu fled Myanmar with her husband when violence erupted. They spent several days hiding in the jungle, before reaching the Kutupalong camp in Bangladesh. Her daughter was raped by a criminal gang there. Banu appears against the image of Spac, Albania’s forced labour camp and prison, where the communist regime of Enver Hoxha placed ‘enemies of the state’. Women imprisoned in Spac faced sexual harassment and abuse

Nurul Islam fled Myanmar in 2013 after he was attacked by Buddhists, who broke into a mosque. The superimposed image is of a wall of a cell in Cambodia. Bureau S-21 – known as the ‘killing machine’ – was a centre for interrogation, torture and extermination during the Khmer Rouge regime (1975-79). The wall bears prisoners’ numbers. Of 17,000 people detained, only 12 survived

Aung Tuin Tay, a Buddhist, lives in the city of Sittwe, once inhabited mostly by Rohingyas. Also shown is the bridge on the frontline of the Abkhazia-Georgia dispute. In this conflict, 250,000 Georgians were driven from their homes, and some 15,000 Georgians and 3,000 Abkhaz died


© 2017 Guardian News and Media Limited

Follow Genocide Watch for more updates:

  • Grey Facebook Icon
  • Grey Twitter Icon
  • Grey YouTube Icon
bottom of page