MEPs condemn the persecution of the Rohingya people

14-Sep-2017 @ 12:00

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MEPs condemn the persecution of the Rohingya people

Conservative MEPs have secured the European Parliament's support for a cross-party resolution condemning the attacks against the Rohingya minority in Myanmar.

The resolution calls for the Myanmar military and security forces to cease the violence immediately, allow humanitarian aid into the region and access for a UN Fact-Finding Mission.

Conservative MEP Amjad Bashir said: 'Myanmar has taken extreme action against the whole Rohingya community in response to the terrorist actions of a few individuals. They have gone well beyond an acceptable response.'

'Over 300,000 people have fled the violence into neighbouring Bangladesh. Children have been beheaded, women raped and whole villages burned. In the words of the UN's High Commissioner for Human Rights, this looks like a text book case of ethnic cleansing.'

'After hearing the horrifying accounts from those who have fled Myanmar we asked for an immediate debate in the European Parliament. I am glad colleagues from across the Parliament have come together and joined Conservative MEPs in condemning the persecution of the Rohingya minority.'

The resolution also calls on the EU to make it clear that it stands ready to consider targeted sanctions and review the trade preferences Myanmar enjoys with the EU if the human rights violations continue.

Mr. Bashir added: 'We have put Myanmar on notice that unless the persecution and violence stops, we will take action.'

Sajjad Karim MEP, who helped secure the cross-party resolution, said: "As a proud defender of human rights, it is painful to see such atrocities in Myanmar being committed on such a scale. What’s worse, is to see a previous beacon of hope, Aung San Suu Kyi, denying that such actions are taking place and seemingly letting these brutalities continue.

“This resolution will hopefully go some way to demonstrating to Ms Suu Kyi and the government in Myanmar that actions have consequences, and that the ethnic cleansing that is being carried will not be accepted by the EU and the world. It is completely unacceptable and must be brought to an immediate halt now.” 

The Rohingyas are one of the most persecuted people in the world after they were denied citizenship in 1982 by Myanmar (then Burma). Deprived of statehood, they struggled to gain access to an education, healthcare or work. Many ended up living in camps. Mr. Bashir previously championed a report through the European Parliament calling on the international community to promote citizenship for the stateless people in the region.


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