India asserts situation in Rakhine State be handled with restraint, focussing on welfare of civilians

ANI | Updated: Sep 19, 2017 17:26 IST

Geneva [Switzerland], September 19 (ANI): India on Tuesday said that the situation in the Rakhine state should be handled with restraint, focussing on the welfare of the civilian population, at the 36th Session of the United States Human Rights Council.

India's Permanent Representative to the United Nations in Geneva, Rajiv K. Chander, while delivering an interactive dialogue with Fact-Finding Mission on Myanmar, said, "We urge that the situation in the Rakhine state be handled with restraint, focussing on the welfare of the civilian population."

India expressed its deep concern over the spate of violence in the Rakhine state of Myanmar that has resulted in the outflow of a large number of people from the state, many of whom have sought shelter in the neighbouring Bangladesh.

While India aknowledged the violence was triggered off by a series of terrorist attacks, which led to loss of lives amongst the security forces as well as the civilian population, it also applauded Bangladesh for extending humanitarian assistance to the refugees, who have taken shelter in the country after fleeing the violence in the Rakhine state.

However, the Indian Ambassador also mentioned that subsequent operations by the Myanmar security forces in the state resulted in a large outflow of people.

"In the past, Myanmar has been tabling regular reports on internal developments at various U.N. bodies. After the submission of the final report of the Kofi Annan-led U.N. Special Advisory Commission for the Rakhine state on August 24, 2017, the Government of Myanmar has welcomed the 'meaningful and long term solutions' proposed in the report and assured that it will give full consideration to its recommendations with a view to carrying them out to the fullest extent, and within the shortest time," Chander said.

"The Government of Myanmar has also agreed to set out a roadmap for implementation of the recommendations, including immediate establishment of a new Ministerial-led committee that would be assisted by an Advisory Board on Rakhine that will include Myanmar and international experts for implementation of the recommendations," he added.

He further said that Myanmar has agreed to set out a roadmap for implementation of the recommendations of the Advisory Commission, including immediate establishment of a new Ministerial led committee that would be assisted by an Advisory Board on Rakhine that will include Myanmar and international experts for implementation of the recommendations.

However, the Ambassador also mentioned that "the international community must extend full support to the Government of Myanmar in its efforts. There is a serious problem emerging in Bangladesh, which is reportedly hosting over 3,00,000 refugees. India has extended humanitarian relief to the Government of Bangladesh to support it in meeting the needs of refugees."

Earlier today, Myanmar State Councillor Aung San Suu Kyi broke her silence on the Rohingya crisis in the country and said that the government does not fear scrutiny by the international community, even as more than 4,00,000 Rohingya Muslims have fled from the northern Rakhine State.

"There have been allegations and counter-allegations that need to be investigated. The government still needs to find out what the real problems are," Suu Kyi said, in a nationally televised address, the first since an army crackdown on the Rohingya Muslim minority community was branded as "ethnic cleansing" by the United Nations.

Suu Kyi further stressed on the short time her government has been in power for, adding, "I am aware of the fact the world attention is focussed on the situation in the Rakhine State as a responsible member of the community of nations. Myanmar does not fear international scrutiny and is committed to bring peace and sustainable solution that will bring peace, stability and development for all communities within that state."

The Rohingya Muslims, who have taken refuge in Cox's Bazar and Teknaf border areas in Bangladesh after they fled the barbarous persecution in Myanmar's Rakhine state, are now suffering due to an absence of food, shelters, medicines, sanitation facilities and clean water.

The United Nations refugee agency, the UNHCR, said around 4,00,000 refugees have fled from the violence-affected Myanmar's Northern Rakhine state and sought refuge in Bangladesh, where the limited shelter capacity is already exhausted.

Many of over 3,50,000 refugees, staying either under open sky or at the new refugee camps and shelters, are suffering from diarrhoea and different diseases and don't have an access to even clean drinking water and proper medicines. (ANI)

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