Date :Thursday, November 15th, 2018 | Time : 09:40 |ID: 77807 | Print

ASEAN call for ‘accountability’ in Rohingya crisis

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SHAFAQNAMember states of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations call for those responsible for atrocities against Rohingya Muslims to be held “fully accountable”, according to a statement prepared for a regional summit , reflecting a stronger line being taken within the group.

The draft of the chairman’s statement at the close of meetings of the 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), said the situation in Rakhine State is a “matter of concern”.

Myanmar government spokesman Zaw Htay did not answer calls seeking comment on the summit message.

Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamed,  ASEAN’s seniormost leader, sharply criticized Myanmar leader Aung San Suu Kyi on Tuesday for her handling of an ethnic crisis that led to mass killings and the exodus of more than 700,000 Rohingya Muslims from her country.

Mahathir said Nobel Peace Prize laureate Suu Kyi was “trying to defend the indefensible” in justifying violence by Myanmar security forces against Rohingya in Rakhine state.

“They are actually oppressing these people to the point of, well, killing them, mass killing, and burial in graves dug by the victims and that kind of thing. That may be relevant in ancient times, but in modern days, we don’t do that kind of thing,” said Mahathir, a 93-year-old politician, Japan Times reported.

It is unusual for leaders in the 10-nation group to publicly criticize each other.

A U.N. report in August detailed mass killings and gang rapes with genocidal intent in a Myanmar military crackdown that began in 2017 and drove hundreds of thousands of Rohingya Muslims from Rakhine into neighboring Bangladesh. It called for its commander-in-chief and five generals to be prosecuted under international law.

The Rohingya crisis is one of the biggest man-made disasters involving a member since ASEAN was founded in 1967, and it is one of the thorniest issues yet faced by a group that traditionally works by consensus and is reluctant to get involved in matters deemed internal to its members, Reuters reported.

 

Read more from Shafaqna:

Amnesty strips Suu Kyi of top honour over atrocities against Rohingya Muslims

UN warned: any attempt to return Rohingya Muslims would risk more deaths

Canadian MPs vote to strip Myanmar leader of honorary citizenship

German parliament condemns violence against Rohingya

Myanmar’s First Rohingya Repatriation is ‘A Deception’ call rights groups

 

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