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     Home > Justice and Peace >  2013-10-25 16:30:09
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Violence against Muslims threatening Myanmar reforms UN envoy

October 25, 2013 - Violence against a Muslim minority in Myanmar is feeding a wider anti-Muslim feeling that poses a serious threat to the country's dramatic economic and political reforms as it emerges from half a century of military rule, a United Nations envoy said on Thursday. Tomas Ojea Quintana, U.N. special rapporteur on the situation in human rights in Myanmar, addressed the U.N. General Assembly's Third Committee dealing with human rights issues, appreciating President Thein Sein’s public call for trust, respect and compassion between people of different faiths and ethnic groups in Myanmar. But more needs to be done by the government to tackle the spread of discriminatory views and to protect vulnerable minority communities. The government says at least 192 people were killed in June and October 2012 clashes between ethnic Rakhine Buddhists and Rohingya Muslims, most of whom Myanmar regards as illegal immigrants from Bangladesh, despite roots going back generations. The clashes led to unrest elsewhere in the country, where other groups of Muslims have been targeted, including Kamans, who are of different ethnicity from Rohingyas. An estimated 5 percent of Myanmar's population of about 60 million is Muslim. (Source: Reuters)


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