Friday, 22 September, 2017

Tillerson says Myanmar violence must stop, supports Suu Kyi

Global split over Rohingya crisis as China backs Myanmar crackdown Bangladesh struggles on front line of Rohingya crisis
Dexter Carr | 15 September, 2017, 00:29

Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said Wednesday that ethnic cleansing is taking place in Myanmar against the Rohingya Muslim minority, and the UN Security Council condemned the violence that has led almost 380,000 Rohingyas to flee to Bangladesh.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has expressed concern over the attacks on Rohingya Muslims and other minorities in Myanmar and urged the country's leadership to end the violence.

Suu Kyi, whose reputation as a human rights champion has been left battered by her response to the crisis, is to make a speech on the issue next week.

But even as the United Nations has called the army crackdown on the Rohingya "ethnic cleansing", western diplomats - from countries competing with China for influence in the Southeast Asian nation - say abandoning Suu Kyi or reimposing sanctions could risk Myanmar's democratic transition.

- UN Secretary-General and Security Council call on Myanmar government to put a halt to ongoing crisis.

The British government said better access is "urgently needed" to provide aid directly to those affected in Myanmar's Rakhine state.

They noted that Suu Kyi had won the assembly's Sakharov Prize in 1990 - an award given for the defense of human rights, minorities and respecting global law.

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More than 370,000 Rohingya - many of them women and children - have fled to Bangladesh to escape violence since August 25, according to the United Nations, an average of nearly 20,000 a day. The Centre has said in the draft affidavit that Rohingyas are a threat to national security and that it is in "national interest" to deport them, suggesting that the court should not "interfere " in its decision. People are dying and suffering at disgusting numbers, and we need to stop it.

The latest eruption of violence in Rakhine has killed more than 1,000 people, according to the UN.

It said there had not been a single allegation of terrorism against any Rohingya ever since the community began living in Jammu.

The Rohingya are fleeing from a Myanmar military offensive in the western state of Rakhine that was triggered by a series of guerrilla attacks on August 25 on security posts and an army camp in which about a dozen people were killed. They have set up a daily langar service for 30,000 to 50,000 people, and aim to build stable and secure shelters for the refugees after the Bangladesh government allots land for the same.

Aung San Suu Kyi has refused to condemn the military's actions, instead blaming "fake news" and a wholesale misinformation campaign that was aiding "terrorists".

United Nations human rights chief Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein on Monday described what was happening in Rakhine state as a "textbook example of ethnic cleansing".

Between 10,000 and 20,000 Rohingya Muslims, fleeing persecution in Myanmar, arrive in Bangladesh daily, Mohammed Abdiker Mohamud, director of the U.N. International Organization for Migration, said.

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