OIC Condemns Renewed Violence in Myanmar and Calls Upon UNSC to Address the Issue

The Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) has condemns the renewed outbreak of violence affecting the Rohingya Muslim community in Rakhine State, Myanmar, which has led to thousands to flee their homes to neighboring Bangladesh. This has been clearly evidenced in the systematic and organized destruction of many villages and homes by vigilante groups under the cover of army and police forces, particularly in Quarter No. 5 in Maungdow city. The OIC condemns the indiscriminate use of military force, including heavy artillery, on civilian populations, which has displaced more than 20,000 Rohingya across the region. The OIC calls upon the Myanmar government to immediately restore the displaced persons to their homes and allow humanitarian aid agencies to assist the affected people.

 

These events violate the basic rights of the Rohingya and they also represent a grave violation of Myanmar's government international commitments to protect civilians. Such incidents of violence only serve to exacerbate tensions and fuel instability.

 

The government has blamed militants for the violence and has accused the Rohingya of setting fire to their own homes and denied any responsibility by the security forces for the chaos that has ensued. Recent attacks by militant groups are not condoned by the OIC. However, the Government of Myanmar must enforce the rule of law and work to respect human rights and fundamental freedoms.

 

The OIC notes that the recommendations of the Advisory Commission on Rakhine State, Chaired by Kofi Annan clearly indicated that greater efforts are needed by the government to prevent violence, maintain peace, foster reconciliation and offer a sense of hope to the long suffering Rohingya population. The current crisis in Rakhine state has the potential of destabilizing the entire region unless the core issues of inequality, justice and citizenship are resolved. In that regard the Secretary General calls upon the United Nations Security Council to address the issue.

 

The OIC further calls upon Member States to abide by Resolutions adopted in the Emergency Session of the Council of Foreign Ministers (CFM) in Kuala Lumpur on 19 January 2017 and those adopted by the 44th Session of the Council of Foreign Minsters in Abidjan, Cote D’Ivoire on 11 July 2017.

 

The OIC expresses support for the recent statements issued by OIC Member States, which highlighted concern over the violence and the deteriorating humanitarian situation facing the Rohingya and emphasizes that it is a charter obligation to “safeguard the rights, dignity and religious and cultural identity of Muslim communities and minorities in non-Member-states”

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(c) 2017 Organisation of Islamic Cooperation

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