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    Muslim Task Force Calls for Dialogue on Rohingya and Peace

    A scene at Te Chaung, a crowded camp near Sittwe that is home to several
    thousand displaced Rohingya Muslims. (Photo: Jpaing / The Irrawaddy)
    Radiance Viewsweekly
    July 20, 2013
    Burma Task Force USA, in a statement on 8 July, expressed that it is
    “deeply troubled” to learn of the recent bombings at the Mahabodhi Temple in
    Bodh Gaya, India.
    “It would be tragic if this event were to further worsen the cycle of
    violence,” stated Dr Malik Mujahid, Chairperson of Burma Task Force USA. “To
    prevent this escalation let us all join together in the spirit of respect and
    to build trust among our communities. At this time of stress and anxiety, we
    invite Buddhists to respond and open dialogue with our diverse Muslim
    community.”
    The statement said that the Burma Task Force sent this message in the
    spirit of the Holy Month of Ramadhan, a month of mercy and forgiveness.
    According to tradition, Muslims are taught to revere knowledge and to seek it
    even if we must travel “as far as China.” Therefore in keeping with this
    teaching, Muslims should “respect the philosophy and practice of our Buddhist
    brothers and sisters and value the spiritual knowledge that they share with the
    world”.
    Burma Task Force especially expressed its gratefulness to know that some
    Buddhist leaders have recently come together to defend the rights of Burmese
    Muslims, whose villages and mosques are being attacked and burned by misguided
    local Buddhist leaders and who face rights restrictions throughout
    Burma/Myanmar. Despite widespread oppression, it is worth noting that the local
    Muslims there do not attack Buddhist shrines, but instead are attacked and made
    homeless in huge numbers.
    Burma Task Force USA said it is confident that this shared service to
    humanity would be true to the spirit of Buddha’s teachings as well as to the
    teachings of our Prophet Mohammed (peace and blessings of Allah be to him).
    Burma Task Force USA is an umbrella organisation with collaboration of
    the following entities: Burmese Rohingya Association of North America, Free
    Rohingya Campaign, American Muslims for Palestine, Council on American-Islamic
    Relations (CAIR), Council of Islamic Organisations of Greater Chicago (CIOGC),
    Islamic Circle of North America (ICNA NY), Islamic Society of North America
    (ISNA), Majlis Shura of Atlanta, Michigan Muslim Community Council, Muslim
    Ummah of North America (MUNA), Muslim Leadership Council of New York and Muslim
    Peace Coalition. The statement concluded, “We pray for peace and mutual
    understanding and an end to violence.”