Language Sites
  • UCAN China
  • UCAN India
  • UCAN Indonesia
  • UCAN Vietnam
News » International

Anti-Rohingya campaign 'broadens targets'

Violence now aimed at Muslims in general, says rights group

Mike MacLachlan, London International

November 2, 2012

Mail This Article
(For more than one recipient, type addresses separated by commas)

Buddhist-Muslim violence in Myanmar appears to have escalated into a wider anti-Muslim campaign, according to the rights group Christian Solidarity Worldwide (CSW). The violence has been concentrated in Rakhine state, with the Rohingya Muslim community the main victims. But Muslims generally, not only Rohingyas, are now facing attacks, Andrew Johnston, CSW’s advocacy director, said in a statement yesterday. The statement follows a report in the British newspaper The Observer, which said that many of those displaced last week when the town of Kyaukpyu was largely destroyed were not stateless Rohingyas but members of the officially recognized Kaman Muslim community. “It’s not just anti-Rohingya violence any more, it’s anti-Muslim,” it quoted Chris Lewa, director of a Rohingya advocacy group, Arakan Project, as saying. CSW called on the United Nations to invoke the “responsibility to protect” principle under which the UN has the right to intervene by “diplomatic, humanitarian and other peaceful means” to prevent genocide, war crimes, ethnic cleansing and crimes against humanity. In the past week, CSW said, thousands of homes in Rakhine state have been destroyed, hundreds of people killed and more than 100,000 displaced. CSW accused “some elements within the security forces” of acting in collusion with mobs, attacking, killing and arresting Rohingyas. Muslim clerics have been arrested, it said. “It is widely believed that elements of the government are directing a policy to eliminate the Rohingyas,” CSW said. It urged the international community to put pressure on the government to allow international observers and humanitarian aid into the affected areas. “There is an urgent need for international action and aid to bring an end to this violence,” said Johnston. The crisis posed “a serious threat to peace and democratization” in Myanmar, he added. Related reports Unregistered Rohingyas' aid blocked Government blocks Muslim support group
UCAN needs your support to continue our independent journalism
Access to UCAN stories is completely free of charge - however it costs a significant amount of money to provide our unique content. UCAN relies almost entirely on donations from our readers and donor organizations that support our mission. If you are a regular reader and are able to support us financially, please consider making a donation. Click here to donate now.

Related Reports