Young Journalists Club | Latest news of Iran and world

News ID: 794
Publish Date: 11:50 - 15 April 2013
TEHRAN, YJC. --The Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) has asked Myanmar to permit a ministerial delegation to visit the country in a bid to discuss the recent outbreak of violence against Muslims.
In a Sunday statement issued following its meeting in Saudi Arabia, the 57-member body also urged the UN Human Rights Commission to send a fact-finding mission to the Southeast Asian country.

The statement urged Myanmarese authorities to "strongly respond to the organization’s appeal and allow a ministerial OIC delegation to visit" the country.

In March, more than 40 people were killed and a number of mosques and homes of Muslims were burned in central Myanmar, indicating a rise in the persecution of Muslims in the country.

Myanmar’s Islamic Religious Affairs Council and the Myanmar Muslim National Affairs Organization later appealed to the government of President Thein Sein to take swift action to stop the ‘violent attacks.’

The latest incident of violence had apparently occurred after a row between a Muslim gold shop owner and Buddhist customers in the town of Meiktila.

According to media reports on Friday, a court in Myanmar sentenced the gold shop owner, his wife and an employee to 14 years in prison with hard labor for hitting the Buddhist customers in an argument over a gold hairpin.

On March 28, the UN Special Rapporteur on Human Rights in Myanmar, Tomas Ojea Quintana, said he had received reports that Myanmar’s soldiers and police sometimes stood by "while atrocities have been committed before their very eyes” by well-organized Buddhist mobs in the central city of Meiktila.

The Muslim minority of Rohingyas in Myanmar accounts for about five percent of the country’s population of nearly 60 million. The persecuted minority has faced torture, neglect, and repression since the country achieved independence in 1948.

Last year, scores of Rohingyas were killed when Buddhist extremists carried out atrocities against Muslims in the western state of Rakhine. Thousands of Rohingyas were also displaced.

Myanmar’s government has been repeatedly criticized for failing to protect the Rohingya Muslims.

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