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Turkish aid groups share with Myanmar Muslims for Eid

September 18, 2016

Officials of IHH and Sadakatasi Foundation, which delivered meat to those in need, express concern for Muslims in Rakhine

YANGON, Myanmar -- Two Turkish charitable organizations have delivered more than 2,400 packages of meat from animals sacrificed for the Eid al-Adha holiday to Muslims in Myanmar, including those in the troubled western state of Rakhine.

A chief of Humanitarian Relief Foundation (IHH) operations in Myanmar told an Anadolu Agency correspondent accompanying the teams earlier this week, “charitable Turks have always extended a hand to those in need everywhere, without taking religion and race into consideration.”

Noting that IHH distributed a total of 2,380 shares of meat to Muslim families in Myanmar, Mucahit Demir said, "if we managed to put a smile on their faces, we are very happy. We will continue to help suffering people around the world."

Demir said some IHH members traveled to Rakhine -- home to around 1.2 million Rohingya Muslims -- while others covered other parts of the country.

“Here, especially in Rakhine, Muslims live under difficult conditions,” he underlined.

Rakhine -- one of the poorest states in Myanmar -- had seen a rise in tensions between ethnic Rakhine Buddhists and stateless Rohingya since communal violence broke out in mid-2012 that left nearly 100 people dead and around 140,000 people displaced, mostly Muslims.

The vice chairman of another Turkish charity, Sadakatasi Foundation, also expressed concern about the living conditions of Muslims in Rakhine and told Anadolu Agency that they had delivered 84 shares of meat across Myanmar.

Ahmet Ozcan said they coordinate with IHH to help those in need, and stressed the duty to reach out to Muslims "who are living under tough circumstances" where they are “deprived of many things”.

*Reporting by Halil Ibrahim Baser; Writing by Satuk Bugra Kutlugun

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