An Update on Myanmar.
posted by: Joan Vine | on: Wednesday, 17 January 2018, 21:30
What is happening and who will help the persecuted Rohingya? A spokesman for the Rohingya Organisation UK says his people are suffering further atrocities perpetrated by forces in the northern part of Myanmar (formerly Burma). There have been stories of rape, killing and house burning. However, the government of Myanmar has rejected these claims as false and distorted.
Rejected by the country they call home and unwanted by - it seems any country - the Rohingya are impoverished and virtually stateless. They have been fleeing Myanmar in their thousands for decades. The United Nations estimates approximately 370,000 Rohingya have taken refuge across the border in Bangladesh, in recent weeks, after a Myanmar government crackdown against the people following a militant attack in August 2017.
There has been condemnation of the lack of a firm international response. Some observers say the situation is disastrous, and the goal of the Myanmar government is ethnic cleansing.
To make matters worse, there has recently been incessant rain and flooding where the refugees are trying to make a home. How much more can these unfortunate people take?
What has led to the present situation? The Rohingya say they are descendants of Arab traders and other groups who have been in Myanmar for generations, but Myanmar's government denies them citizenship and sees them as illegal immigrants from Bangladesh.
What can, or is, being done? A meeting of Asian foreign ministers to discuss the crisis was held on 19 December 17 in Myanmar's capital, Yangon, but was dismissed as "largely an act of political theatre" by Human Rights groups.
Indonesia's ambassador to London has said that a comprehensive approach was needed. He said an investigation with regional participation should be instigated and that his country was ready to participate.
Others have said that the Rohingya people should be repatriated, as the Bangladesh nation does not want these people in their country. It is doubtful, however, after so much suffering and discrimination, the people would want to return. After all, what is there to return to?
A UN spokesperson has described the Rohingya as ‘probably the most friendless people in the world’. Abuses suffered by them could amount to crimes against humanity, and it regretted that the Myanmar government had failed to act on recommendations it had provided, including lifting restrictions of movement of the Rohingya.
It has called for an investigation into the recent allegations of rights abuses, as well as for humanitarian access to be given. Former UN-Secretary General Kofi Annan is heading an advisory commission currently assessing the general situation in the area after being asked in August by Ms Suu Kyi.
The Rohingya crisis has proved a stain on humanity. There seems little will be done to solve the situation for the foreseeable future.
Mothers’ Union Central Office is in contact with both Mothers' Union Provincial Office and the Anglican Church of Myanmar to help support the refugees and the relief teams in their efforts. We are also working with the wider Anglican Communion to establish what relief is needed and where it will be best placed.
These people desperately need our prayers:
Heavenly Father, we pray that in this time of trouble and devastation the people of Myanmar will feel the peace of Your presence with them. We pray for the Relief Committee and the diocese relief team as they aid the affected areas. We pray that they will able to reach all those in need and reassure those who need comfort. Please keep them safe. We pray that you will help relief workers have wisdom and clarity in assessing need. Finally, we pray for the all members of Mothers’ Union in Myanmar; that their needs will be met and that they will bring comfort and support to those around them. We pray in Your Name Lord. Amen.
Please note: the author has researched this work. No responsibility can be taken for any errors or misinformation contained therein.
Posted: 17 Jan 2018 | There are 0 comments
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