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Asean & Global Updates
POSTED | 15:13 PM | 12-09-2017

Myanmar faces more pressure over Rohingya

Pressure mounted on Myanmar on Tuesday (Sept 12, 2017) to end violence that has sent about 370,000 Rohingya Muslims fleeing to Bangladesh, with the United States calling for protection of civilians and Bangladesh urging safe zones to enable refugees to return home.

But China, which competes for influence in its southern neighbor with the United States, said it backed Myanmar’s efforts to safeguard “development and stability.”

The government of Buddhist-majority Myanmar says its security forces are fighting Rohingya militants behind a surge of violence in Rakhine State that began on August 25, and they are doing all they can to avoid harming civilians.

The government says about 400 people have been killed in the fighting, the latest in the western state.

The top UN human rights official denounced Myanmar of Monday for conducting a “cruel military operation” against Rohingya, branding it “a textbook example of ethnic cleansing,” according to Reuters.

The United States said the violent displacement of the Rohingya showed Myanmar security forces were not protecting civilians.

“We call on Burmese security authorities to respect the rule of law, stop the violence, and end the displacement of civilians from all communities,” the White House said in a statement.

Myanmar government spokesmen were not immediately available for comment but the foreign ministry said shortly before the US statement was issued that Myanmar was also concerned about the suffering. Its forces were carrying out their legitimate duty to restore order in response to acts of extremism.

 

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