Call for Meaningful Action to Ease Rohingya Plight

Call for Meaningful Action to Ease Rohingya PlightCall for Meaningful Action to Ease Rohingya Plight

Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani urged a “meaningful” response to the “dreadful” situation of the Rohingya Muslim community in Myanmar, saying the world cannot afford to leave in grave risk the lives of hundreds of thousands of the minority people.

Rouhani made the call in an address to the meeting of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation’s Contact Group on Myanmar, which was held on Tuesday on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly in New York, reported.

Violence against the Rohingya in Rakhine, the poorest state of Myanmar, has escalated in recent weeks after some of the Myanmar Army posts came under attack by an allegedly insurgent group.

The brutal repression of the Muslim minority by state security forces has so far left over 1,000 dead and forced more than 400,000 of the impoverished community to flee to neighboring Bangladesh.

The president said the plight of Rohingya Muslims, caused by systematic attacks carried out by extremist elements and some associated with government security forces, has shaken the conscience of humanity.

“The disturbing reports on mass killings, rape, razed homes and the tragic images of defenseless civilians and innocent women and children living at the mercy of the elements are reminiscent of the worst human atrocities,” he said.

Rouhani said the world must act to ease the sufferings of the Muslim minority, warning that if the extensive violations of the basic rights of Rohingya Muslims are neglected, it would further encourage extremism and even become a destabilizing factor for the entire region.

“The international community and particularly the OIC should take all measures to make the government of Myanmar put an immediate end to the violence against the Rohingya Muslim community and bring those responsible for the atrocities to justice. We also need to ensure humanitarian assistance to the people in need,” he said.

The president said the government of Myanmar should understand that forcing people out of their homeland and driving them to other countries do not resolve this deep-rooted crisis.

“They need to address the longstanding grievances and the plight of its Muslim community through the effective restoration of their citizenship right,” he said.

Rouhani said Iran stands ready to provide assistance and is willing to support efforts to achieve a “durable” and “peaceful” solution to the crisis.

At the end of the meeting, the OIC Contact Group issued a declaration that called on Myanmar to accept the UN Human Rights Council’s fact-finding mission to conduct “thorough and independent” investigations into acts of brutality committed against Rohingya Muslims.


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