Sunday, 31 March 2013

State involvement reports in Burma unrest

Anti-Muslim Violence spread in Burma: Newly Attacks in Sit Kwin village of Minhla Township

30 Mar, see the video link of burning here 

Muslims in Burma were in hiding and fearful for their lives as sectarian violence led by Buddhist mobs continues to spread across central regions of the country. The anti-Muslim violence has flared up in Sit Kwin and left many homes, shops, and mosques utterly destroyed.

Since 42 people were killed in violence that erupted on March 20, unrest led by hardline Buddhists has spread to at least 10 other towns and villages in central Myanmar. Now dusk to dawn curfews are in effect many areas of the surrounding region, and several townships are under a state of emergency.

Crowds have been fired up by anti-Muslim rhetoric spread by phone and social media websites from monks preaching a so-called "969 movement". The number is derived from Buddhism referring to various attributes of the Buddha, but it has come to represent a radical form of anti-Islamic nationalism.

State involvement reports in Burma unrest
Source Couriermail, 29 Mar
THE United Nations Special Rapporteur on Myanmar (Burma) human rights says he has received reports of "state involvement" in some of the recent violence between Buddhists and Muslims in the former army-ruled nation.
At least 40 people have been killed and mosques burned in several towns in central Myanmar since fresh sectarian strife erupted on March 20, prompting the government to impose emergency rule and curfews in some areas.
"I have received reports of State involvement in some of the acts of violence," Tomas Ojea Quintana said in a statement on Thursday.
He also pointed to "instances where the military, police and other civilian law enforcement forces have been standing by while atrocities have been committed before their very eyes, including by well organised ultra-nationalist Buddhist mobs.
"This may indicate direct involvement by some sections of the State or implicit collusion and support for such actions."
According to the statement, Quintana also received information indicating that the military and police may be arbitrarily detaining people based on religious and ethnic profiling.
Myanmar President Thein Sein vowed a tough response to religious extremists in a national address.
According to the United Nations, the recent clashes - which were apparently triggered by an argument in a gold shop that turned into a riot - have seen some 12,000 people displaced.
It is the worst sectarian strife since violence between Buddhists and Muslims in the western state of Rakhine last year left at least 180 people dead and more than 110,000 displaced.
Myanmar's Muslims - largely of Indian, Chinese and Bangladeshi descent - account for an estimated four per cent of the population of roughly 60 million.

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