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Iranian Deputy FM Meets Myanmarese Counterpart on Situation of Muslims


July 4, 2013

TEHRAN (FNA)-
Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister for Asia and Pacific Affairs Seyed Abbas
Araqchi in a meeting with his Myanmarese counterpart Zin Yaw discussed the
latest situation of the Muslims in the Southeast Asian country.

During the meeting
in Naypyidaw on Wednesday, Araqchi said that the Islamic Republic is prepared
to dispatch humanitarian aid consignments to Myanmar in order to help with the
relief of the Rohingya Muslims.

He also voiced the
deep concern of the Iranian authorities, scholars and nation over the ongoing
sectarian clashes between Buddhists and Rohingya Muslims, urging the Myanmar
government to adopt effective measures to properly resolve the issue.

Araqchi further
noted that Iran is ready to send aid shipments to Myanmar, and help to improve
the miserable living conditions of Rohingyas.
In June, the United
Nations refugee agency said over 140,000 people remain displaced in Myanmar a
year after extremist Buddhists started daily attacks on the country’s Muslim
community in Rakhine state.
According to the UN
body, some 75,000 people were displaced by the first wave of riots in Northern
Rakhine state last June and another 36,000 were uprooted in the second wave in
October.
“Many others
who were not directly affected by the violence have lost their livelihoods as a
result of restricted movements due to the security situation. Some have been
forced to leave their homes in search of assistance,” UNHCR spokesman
Adrian Edwards said at the time.
The agency called
for measures to stem the flow of people out of Rakhine and to promote the
“safe and sustainable voluntary return” of the displaced.
UNHCR also called
on the governments in the region to keep their doors open to people in need of
international protection.
The UN body
underlined the necessity to urgently register all internally displaced persons
in order to improve aid delivery and better respond to the needs of the most
vulnerable ones.
Rohingya Muslims in
Myanmar account for about five percent of the country’s population of nearly 60
million. They have been persecuted and faced torture, neglect, and repression
since the country’s independence in 1948.
Hundreds of
Rohingyas are believed to have been killed and thousands displaced in recent
attacks by extremists who call themselves Buddhists.
The extremists
frequently attack Rohingyas and have set fire to their homes in several
villages in Rakhine.
Myanmar army forces
allegedly provided the fanatics containers of petrol for torching the houses of
Muslim villagers, who were then forced to flee.
Myanmar’s
government has been repeatedly criticized for failing to protect the Muslim
minority.