Tag Archives: Myanmar

Easter: Pope Francis calls for peace

Brussels 04.04.2021 Francis called for peace in several conflict areas in Africa, including the Tigray region of northern Ethiopia and the Cabo Delgado province of Mozambique. He added that the crisis in Yemen has been “met with a deafening and scandalous silence”.

The Pontifex appealed to Israelis and Palestinians to “rediscover the power of dialogue” to reach a two-state solution where both can live side by side in peace and prosperity.

In mentioning conflict areas, he singled out for praise “the young people of Myanmar committed to supporting democracy and making their voices heard peacefully”. More than 550 protesters have been killed since a February 1 military coup in Myanmar, which the pope visited in 2017.

Francis said he realised many Christians were still persecuted and called for all restrictions on freedom of worship and religion worldwide to be lifted.

At one point, nearly 9 thousand people were simultaneously celebrating Jesus’ Resurrection with the Pope on Vatican News’ English-language Facebook page alone.

Over 170 broadcast networks and media outlets picked up the Easter broadcasts, which has seen much wider coverage in recent years due to live-streaming.

Foreign ministers Council to discuss broad agenda

Today in Luxembourg the Foreign Affairs Council will discuss the following international issues:

Iran

The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action on Iran.

North Korea

Ministers will address the situation in the Korean peninsula, in view of the recent provocations of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK).

The Council is expected to adopt additional EU autonomous measures to complement and reinforce the UN Security Council sanctions.

Ministers will also discuss how the EU can contribute to strengthening the implementation of UNSC resolutions by all UN members states.

Turkey

Foreign ministers will discuss the EU cooperation with Turkey on regional situations. This discussion will feed into the European Council meeting of 19-20 October.

Human rights

Ministers will have debate on the EU policy on human rights in the presence of the EU Special Representative for Human Rights, Stavros Lambrinidis. The Council will adopt:

  • conclusions on the mid-term review of the action plan on human rights and democracy
  • the EU annual report on human rights and democracy in the world in 2016.

Myanmar/Burma

The Council will adopt conclusions on Myanmar, in the light of the humanitarian and human rights situation in Rakhine State.

EU requests humanitarian access to Rohingya

“I am following the dramatic developments in Rakhine State and at the border region in Bangladesh closely. The European Union has raised its concerns as recently as last Friday in direct contacts with Myanmar government members” – said the EU top diplomat Federica Mogherini commenting on a situation in a statement.

‘… The priority now is to obtain immediate humanitarian access again, and to address in parallel the root causes of the conflict by implementing the Annan Advisory Commission recommendations to this end. On both accounts we were reassured that there will be implementing steps this week, which I expect to happen” – the statement continued.

Mogherini also insured that her European External Action Service in in contact with Bangladeshi authorities and are “stepping up our humanitarian engagement” there.

Rohingya flee Rakhine State

Tens of thousands of people have fled violence in Myanmar’s Rakhine state in fear of killings, rape and even massacres.

 

The Rohingya are the world’s largest stateless community and one of its most persecuted minorities.

Using a dialect similar to that spoken in Chittagong in southeast Bangladesh, the Sunni Muslims are loathed by many in majority-Buddhist Myanmar who see them as illegal immigrants and call them “Bengali” – even though many have lived in Myanmar for generations.

They are not officially recognised as an ethnic group, partly due to a 1982 law stipulating that minorities must prove they lived in Myanmar prior to 1823 – before the first Anglo-Burmese war – to obtain nationality.

Myanmar’s de facto leader Aung San Suu Kyi has faced widespread criticism for her stance on the Rohingya.

Her administration has dismissed concerns about rights abuses and refused to grant visas to UN officials tasked with investigating such allegations.

This week she said sympathy for the Rohingya was being generated by a“huge iceberg of misinformation”.

Analysts say Suu Kyi is hampered by the politically incendiary nature of the issue in Myanmar and the fact she has little control over the military.

Chechen protest against persecution of Myanmar Muslims

Russian Federation. In the capital of Chechnya, Grozny, on the morning of Monday, September; 4, a rally in support of the Myanmar Muslims began. The action, broadcasted directly by the TV channel “Grozny TV”, RT and the television channel “Rain”, according to local sources thousands of people came to express their protest against the persecution of the Muslim minority.

Participants of the rally gathered at 11AM on the central square in front of the mosque “Heart of Chechnya”. Dozens of people came with posters on which words of protest against murders of Muslims in Myanmar. As reported by Interfax, the rally was addressed by the head of Chechnya, Ramzan Kadyrov.

A resident of Grozny, Aslan Borzoev, told RBC that protesters had completely filled the square in front of the mosque “The Heart of Chechnya.” According to him, people left their cars far beyond the town center due to a large crowds of people and walked on foot to the square. He noted that some participants of the rally came with banners on which words of support for the Myanmar Muslims and condemnation of the “genocide” of the Rohingya people.

According to “Chechnya Today”, Muslims from all over the Caucasus gathered for a rally in Grozny. At the same time, “Kavkaz.Realii” claims that in Grozny civil servants were ordered to leave the holidays and take part in the event.

 

EU message to Rakhine State

“The issuance of the interim report of the Advisory Commission on Rakhine State, which was established by State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi and led by Dr Kofi Annan, is an important moment for the millions of people who live there, Myanmar, neighbouring countries and the wider international community. ” – says the statement of the European External action service.

“The subsequent statement by the Union Government concurring with the report’s recommendations and promising speedy progress towards implementation is a welcome step when it comes to the Government’s commitment to find viable and sustainable solutions to the complex situation in Rakhine State. The recommendations reaffirm earlier EU calls to address underlying causes, including elimination of statelessness and discrimination, providing equal access to education and health care by all communities and lifting impediments to the freedom of movement. The European Union is fully behind the recommendations of the report, which should be implemented swiftly by the Government of Myanmar. To this end, we stand ready to provide support to the Government. ”