Burmese Muslim killing, Zardari's letter and the reaction from Pakistan


In a letter addressed to the President of Myanmar, President Pakistan Asif Ali Zardari called for hastening the process of rehabilitation of Rohingya Muslims so that they can return to their homes and lead a safe and secure life.

The president added that the government and the people of Pakistan were saddened to learn about the losses of the Muslims and were deeply concerned about their plight.

President Asif Ali Zardari on Tuesday expressed deep concern over the loss of life and property of Rohingya Muslims during the ethnic clashes in the State of Rakhine, Myanmar.

So after the world wide criticism on Pakistani and international media by the social media facebook and twitter users, finally both media and Pakistani government express their deep concern over the killing of Muslim in Burma.

The 800,000-strong Rohingya community has never been accepted as part of Burma and has always been discriminated against, with the violence against them seemingly intensifying in recent weeks. One catalyst was a statement by Burmese President Thein Sein that all Rohingyas should either be deported or placed in refugee camps. Since many Rohingyas trace their roots to Burma, going back many decades, such a move would essentially leave them stateless. Bangladesh has always been reluctant to accept Rohingyas, while Burma sees them as illegal immigrants. The Rohingyas seem to be stuck between a rock and a hard place. Express Tribune Editorial

OIC have also called for the fact finding to the big violence. The head of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) on Sunday proposed sending an OIC mission to probe the “massacres” of Rohingya Muslims in Buddhist-majority Myanmar, a statement said.

The OIC will try to persuade the government in Yangon to accept an OIC fact-finding mission, Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu told an executive committee meeting of the world’s largest Muslim grouping which is based in the Saudi city of Jeddah. “The OIC has directed its offices at the United Nations in New York to urge the Council to look into the suffering of the Rohingya minority,” he said.

The Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) also threatened to attack Myanmar to avenge crimes against the Muslim Rohingya, unless Pakistan halts all relations with the government and shuts its embassy in Islamabad.The umbrella TTP group sought to present itself as a defender of Muslim men and women in Myanmar, saying “we will take revenge of your blood”.

Spokesman Ehsanullah Ehsan demanded that the Pakistani government halt all relations with Myanmar and close down its embassy in Islamabad. “Otherwise we will not only attack Burmese interests anywhere but will also attack the Pakistani fellows of Burma one by one,” he said in a statement.

Pakistani senators from the treasury and opposition benches also strongly condemned the ongoing massacre of Muslims in Myanmar and vowed to move a resolution after taking the Foreign Office on-board.

International media
Monks who played a vital role in Burma's recent struggle for democracy have been accused of fuelling ethnic tensions in the country by calling on people to shun a Muslim community that has suffered decades of abuse.

In a move that has shocked many observers, some monks' organisations have issued pamphlets telling people not to associate with the Rohingya community, and have blocked humanitarian assistance from reaching them. One leaflet described the Rohingya as "cruel by nature" and claimed it had "plans to exterminate" other ethnic groups.

"In recent days, monks have emerged in a leading role to enforce denial of humanitarian assistance to Muslims, in support of policy statements by politicians," said Chris Lewa, director of the Arakan project, a regional NGO. "A member of a humanitarian agency in Sittwe told me that some monks were posted near Muslim displacement camps, checking on and turning away people they suspected would visit for assistance."

Monks' leader Ashin Htawara recently encouraged the government to send the group "back to their native land" at an event in London hosted by the anti-Rohingya Burma Democratic Concern. Ko Ko Gyi, a democracy activist with the 88 Generation Students group and a former political prisoner, said: "The Rohingya are not a Burmese ethnic group. The root cause of the violence… comes from across the border." Mark Farmaner, director of Burma Campaign UK, said: "We were shocked to have [Ashin Htawara] propose to us that there should be what amounts to concentration camps for the Rohingya." According to The Independent

Ms Suu Kyi has also been criticised for failing to speak out. Amal de Chickera of the London-based Equal Rights Trust, said: "You have these moral figures, whose voices do matter. It's extremely disappointing and in the end it can be very damaging."

The Rohingya have lived in Burma for centuries, but in 1982, the then military ruler Ne Win stripped them of their citizenship. Thousands fled to Bangladesh where they live in pitiful camps. Foreign media are still denied access to the conflict region, where a state of emergency was declared last month, and ten aid workers were arrested without explanation.

Sources: Express Tribune | The Independent


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