The Rohingya are an ethnic community, the majority of them are Muslim, who have lived for centuries in Myanmar where the majority are Buddhist. At present, there are about 1.1 million Rohingya in the Southeast Asian country. The Rohingya locally speak Ruaingga, a dialect that is separate from others spoken throughout Myanmar. They are not considered one of the country’s 135 official ethnic community and have been denied citizenship in Myanmar since 1982, which has effectively rendered them stateless. They have lived in the area now known as Myanmar since as early as the 12th century, according to many historians and Rohingya groups. And they have been living in Arakan from time immemorial. Since the 1970s, a number of crackdowns on the Rohingya in Rakhine State have forced hundreds of thousands to flee to neighboring Bangladesh, as well as Malaysia, Thailand, and other Southeast Asian countries. During such crackdowns, refugees have often reported rape, torture, arson, and murder by Myanmar security forces. After the killings of nine border police in October 2016, the government blamed what it claimed were fighters from an armed Rohingya group and troops started pouring into the villages of Rakhine State. Since the late 1970s, nearly one million Rohingya have fled Myanmar due to widespread persecution. According to the most recently available data from the United Nations in May, more than 168,000 Rohingya have fled Myanmar since 2012. Following violence that broke out last year, more than 87,000 Rohingya fled to Bangladesh from October 2016 to July 2017, according to the International Organization for Migration. In November 2017, Bangladesh and Myanmar signed a deal for the return of 650,000 Rohingya refugees, who fled in the recent violence. Both countries agreed to complete voluntary repatriation in two years. The plan is based on a similar agreement that was signed in the 1990s to repatriate Rohingya who have fled a previous crackdown led by the Myanmar military.