Desmond Tutu speaks out on Rakhine crisis

Myanmar opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi holds her speech during the Peace Nobel Prize lecture at the city hall in Oslo as she formally accepts the prize she won while under house arrest in 1991. The
Desmond Tutu speaks out on Rakhine crisis
Author

09 September, 2017

Retired South African cleric and anti-apartheid campaigner Archbishop Desmond Tutu has urged Myanmar leader and fellow Nobel laureate Aung San Suu Kyi to intervene to help Rohingya Muslims fleeing her country.

Suu Kyi, who won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1991, receiving the award for "her non-violent struggle for democracy and human rights" while standing up against military rulers.

With so much riding on this political, commercial, and military engagement with Myanmar, there was never any way the USA or its allies were ever going to "embrace the Rohingya cause" and the real power has been very busy using a "policy" to advance business and security interests, unencumbered by "quaint considerations like worldwide law and human rights", political commentator and global lawyer Barry Grossman says.

She defended her response to the crisis for the first time on Thursday, but did not refer to the Rohingya specifically.

Condemnations are no longer useful, Tayyeb continued, the genocide of Rohingya Muslims reminds one of the behavior of monsters in the forest.

"We are friendless in our own country: because we are racially different, we are religiously different and our appearance is different", says Tun Khin, a United Kingdom -based Rohingya Muslim activist whose family fled an earlier wave of violence to Bangladesh.

UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres has described the violence as being on the verge of ethnic cleansing.

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Leaders of Muslim-majority countries have also condemned the violence.

More than a dozen Nobel laureates have written an open letter to the UN Security Council warning of a tragedy "amounting to ethnic cleansing and crimes against humanity" in Rakhine state, citing the "potential for genocide".

And yet Aung San Suu Kyi is in an unenviable position: the attacks launched on security force posts by Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army, formerly Al Yaqeen, are perceived as a threat to national sovereignty, and the Rohingya are viewed domestically as interlopers from Bangladesh.

"A country that is not at peace with itself, that fails to acknowledge and protect the dignity and worth of all its people, is not a free country".

'The situation in Rakhine has been such since many decades.

He added: "As we witness the unfolding horror we pray for you to be courageous and resilient again".

The United Nations says that almost 164,000 Rohingya have fled to Bangladesh over the past two weeks to escape a massive security sweep and alleged atrocities by the country's security forces and Buddhist mobs.

The organization that oversees the Nobel Peace Prize said Friday the 1991 prize awarded to Myanmar's Aung Sang Suu Kyi can not be revoked.

She made the claim in a telephone call to Turkey President Recep Tayyip Erdogan while discussing the violence that triggered a flood of more than 120,000 refugees to cross the border into neighbouring Bangladesh to flee the fighting. But, in her recent interviews, she has mentioned that the army is dealing with terrorists who have attacked the military after whatever the country has done for them.


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