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New York OIC Group holds Emergency Meeting to Discuss Latest Situation of the Rohingya Muslim Minority in Myanmar

December 16, 2016

The Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) Observer Mission to the United Nations convened an emergency expanded meeting of the OIC Group to discuss the situation of the Rohingya Muslim Minority on 12 December 2016 in New York. The meeting was chaired by Ambassador Muzaffarbek Madrahimov, Permanent Representative of Uzbekistan in his capacity as Chair of the OIC Group.

The OIC General Secretariat was represented by Ambassador Agshin Mehdiyev, Permanent Observer of the OIC Observer Mission to the United Nations. The Group heard informational briefings on the situation from various sources, including Dr. Wakar Uddin, Director General of the Arakan Rohingya Union, regarding the situation on the ground including reports of denial of basic human rights, arbitrary arrests, inhumane treatment of Rohingya in detention camps, lack of access to humanitarian assistance, the torching of villages and displacement of more than 30,000 Rohingya since October 9, 2016. Members of the OIC Group in New York condemned the deteriorating situation and expressed concern over the implications of the ongoing crisis on their own countries.

With tens of thousands of refugees and displaced persons taking shelter in neighboring countries, the problem is no longer a domestic Myanmar issue and threatens the stability of the wider region. Members of the OIC Group in New York underscored the need for the Myanmar armed forces to comply with the rule of law and for the government of Myanmar to facilitate truly independent investigation into the reported violence and human rights violation against the Rohingya Muslim Minority since October 9, 2016. Members of the OIC Group in New York welcomed the announcement by the Representative of Malaysia that the Prime Minister of Malaysia will host an Extraordinary Council of Foreign Ministers Meeting to discuss the ongoing violence against the Rohingya Muslim Minority. The Members also called for the United Nations Special Rapporteur, Ms. Yanghee Lee to brief the OIC Group in Geneva and for the United Nations Human Rights Council to consider adopting a draft resolution on the Situation of Human Rights in Myanmar.

The Members also called for serious steps to be taken by the OIC and the international community to urge the government of Myanmar to ensure that humanitarian assistance is allowed into Rakhine State as well as to address the root causes of the violence, increase inter-communal dialogue to ensure that the displaced Rohingya population is allowed to return to their homes in safety and dignity.

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