BROUK Addresses British Parliament On Rohingya Crisis
16 December 2014
BROUK ADDRESSES BRITISH PARLIAMENT ON ROHINGYA CRISIS
Today, the President of the Burmese Rohingya Organisation UK (BROUK), Tun Khin, spoke at the British Parliament on the Burmese Government’s plan to exclude Rohingya from elections next year, the ongoing humanitarian crisis, and a new plan by Burma’s government which could result in hundreds of thousands of Rohingya being interred in camps under Apartheid-like conditions.
The meeting was chaired by Baroness Kinnock, Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group for Democracy in Burma, and focused on the Rohingya crisis in Arakan State, Burma. Chris Lewa, Director of the Arakan Project, also spoke at the meeting about a new wave of repression which has driven more than 16,000 Rohingya to flee Burma in the last two months.
According to Tun Khin, the central government obstructs Rohingyas’ attempts to eke out a living. In fact, the government can be said to be trying to gradually starve the Rohingya by placing extreme constraints on our livelihood opportunities and by blocking and/or severely restricting humanitarian assistance to our communities, either in internal refugee camps or in Rohingya villages. Recent media reports indicate that in the last two months alone more than 16,000 Rohingyas – including women, children and elderly people – have fled the country for fear that the Burmese authorities are about to implement the final phase of Rohingya destruction – widely known as the ‘Rakhine Action Plan’.
The government uses various security forces – police, Special Branch, military units and other law enforcement agencies – to control our physical movement which in turn extort money, extract forced labor, and force us to give them our produce if we are farmers or our daily catch if we are fishermen. Typically, the government sanctions its state security forces to use violence and coercion against Rohingya.
The Burmese government has given blanket impunity to extremist Rakhines who openly vow to cleanse Arakan or Rakhine state of any Rohingya and act violently towards Rohingya communities. There is a systematic plan to drive out Rohingyas. The truth is that the Burmese government is the root cause of this problem.
BROUK President Tun Khin said “The British government should support the establishment of an independent international investigation into possible violations of international law against the Rohingya in Burma.Low level quiet diplomacy isn’t going to bring about the major changes that would ensure proper humanitarian access in Rakhine State that is needed to save lives. Ban Ki-moon must personally take the lead in negotiating international humanitarian access; The British government should support it”.
For more information please contact Tun Khin +44 (0) 7888714866.