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Protesters Seek May’s Intervention in Burma

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The protest was called following the Burmese military action from August 25th to present which has seen more than 5,000 Rohingya being killed and over 250,000 Rohingya fleeing the violence perpetrated by Burma to Bangladesh….reports Asian Lite News

Protesters seeking British intervention to halt genocide against Rohingyas

Restless Beings and Burmese Rohingya Organisation UK (BROUK) along with several rights forums organised a demonstration at Downing Street, London. The protesters appeal to the British Government to retract its financial and training support to the Burmese Military. They also urged the Government to take a leading role in restoring peace and providing aid to the 250,000 Rohingya refugees.

The demonstration was called following the Burmese military action from August 25th to present which has seen more than 5,000 Rohingya being killed and over 250,000 Rohingya fleeing the violence perpetrated by Burma to Bangladesh.

A humanitarian disaster is awaiting following the mass escape of Rohingya from Burma. To date, the Foreign Office is yet to offer any serious statement to the Burmese Government nor has Downing Street retreated its financial support to the Burmese military which it has been funding and training. The genocide in Burma of the Rohingya is undeniable and the public support for this community has been growing since a plethora of images and videos have flooded social media showing the genocide unfolding.

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Afzal Khan, MP from Gorton Manchester, addressing the protest rally in London

Meanwhile, Labour MP Afzal Khan wrote an open letter to Prime Minister Theresa May about the violence against the Rohingya Muslim minority in Myanmar.

Mr Afzal Khan, MP for Manchester Gorton, asked the prime minister to condemn the persecution and violence against the Rohingya, and asking for a full review of UK military aid to Myanmar.

“It is unacceptable that the UK government stand by as the long-running suffering of the Rohingya people reaches new levels, in a campaign that the UN has said may amount to ethnic cleansing,” Mr Khan said. “My constituents, and colleagues in the Labour Party have sent a clear message that human rights abuses must be condemned. The Prime Minister must follow the example of the Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, and do the same.”

Khan said: “The situation of the Rohingya people in Myanmar is dire. Indigenous minorities in Rakhine State, in particular the Muslim Rohingya minority, have suffered a horrific catalogue of human rights abuses for decades. In recent days, this brutality has reached new levels and threatens to descend into ethnic cleansing and genocide.

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Protesters seeking British intervention to halt genocide against Rohingyas

“The Prime Minister of Canada, a fellow commonwealth country, has rightly issued a statement on the matter: “Canada is deeply concerned by the flow of refugees from Myanmar and reports of serious abuse against the Rohingya. Civilians must be protected.”

“In recent years, the Foreign Office has supported the lifting of trade and financial sanctions on Myanmar on condition of supporting the country’s democratic transition. Reports of the training of Burmese military personnel by the Ministry of Defence and the sale of arms to the country – amounting to thousands of pounds – are contrary to our values and the standards expected by the British people on human rights in British foreign policy.

“The UK has sold military equipment worth over £500,000 to the Myanmar government over the last three years. Are you able to assert with confidence that these sales do not include any offensive weaponry that could have been used by the Myanmar armed forces in combat against civilians? I urge you to commission an urgent inquiry into the matter and to publish the findings. I also urge you to place on public record the full extent of the UK’s military and other support to the Burmese government and the review of any decisions taken by the British government to provide continued support despite accredited reports of human rights abuses.

“Furthermore, I urge you to issue a statement, condemning the treatment of the Rohingya minority in Myanmar, demanding the safe flow of refugees, and free access for aid and media organisations. When ethnic and religious minorities are facing discrimination and state brutality, the British government cannot and must not stand by and idly watch. You must condemn the actions of the Burmese in Rakhine state.”

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Protesters seeking British intervention to halt genocide against Rohingyas