Dhaka, Mon, Sep 2017
EU urges urgent de-escalation of tensions
07 September 2017,Thursday, 23:00
The Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) has urged the European Union (EU) and the United Nations agencies to take action to alleviate the sufferings of the Rohingya people of Myanmar, UNB reports.
OIC Secretary General Dr Yousef A Al-Othaimeen wrote separate letters to High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy (HR) Federica Mogherini, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (UNHCHR) Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein and UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) Filippo Grandi calling for decisive steps to end the ongoing crisis in Rakhine State.
The Secretary General reiterated that the OIC joined the international community in calling for the recommendations of the Rakhine State Commission to be implemented, but these are long-term goals and there is an urgent and immediate need for lifesaving intervention.
“OIC stands ready to provide humanitarian assistance,” the OIC chief mentioned in his letters text of which UNB obtained on Thursday.
The OIC reiterated its call upon the Myanmar government to end the cycle of violence and inhumane treatment of the Rohingya people and provide a lasting solution to the question of their legal status.
Since 2014, the OIC has warned that if the government of Myanmar continues to destroy homes, kill innocent civilians and humiliate entire population without any recourse to justice this will create a breeding ground for recruitment by extremists elements.
Now the international community must act to prevent the genocide of the Rohingya, said the OIC, a block of 57 member countries.
Meanwhile, the EU has said there is an urgent need for a de-escalation of tensions in Rakhine State of Myanmar, on all sides, and for full observance of international human rights law.
“The European Union stands in solidarity with the Bangladeshi authorities, who have played a crucial humanitarian role in welcoming the refugees who have arrived as a result of the crisis," said EU High Representative Federica Mogherini in a statement on the situation in Rakhine State.
Mogherini said unrestricted humanitarian access, including for aid workers, is essential in order to reach those who desperately need it.
The government of Myanmar has committed to implementing the recommendations of the Advisory Commission on Rakhine State. "This should be done without delay and with full determination."
The European Union offered its full support in practical terms to the government's implementation of the recommendations, which is the way to avoid the further deterioration of the situation and to move forward.
The situation in Northern Rakhine State in Myanmar is extremely serious and has our full attention, the statement reads.
"Today, I was in touch with the Foreign Minister of Indonesia, Retno Marsudi, following her visit to Myanmar and Bangladesh, and through our European Union Delegation in Yangon and elsewhere, we are in close contact with the authorities in Myanmar, in the region and beyond," said the Vice President.
The European Union is committed to supporting the government of Myanmar and all stakeholders in finding sustainable solutions towards lasting peace, stability and prosperity, for the benefit of the whole population, reads the statement, a copy of which UNB obtained on Thursday.
“As the European Union, we condemn the attacks on August 25 on Myanmar security forces in Northern Rakhine State and the subsequent violence, and we expect the perpetrators to be brought to justice in line with the rule of law.”
The security forces involved in ongoing operations have a duty to exercise maximum restraint and to protect unarmed civilians, said the Vice President.
As of Wednesday, over 146,000 people had crossed into Bangladesh, fleeing violence in Rakhine state, Myanmar, says the MSF.
However, local sources says the number is now close to 2,00000 with a possibility to turn 3,00000 in next couple of weeks.
Meanwhile, UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres has said they are receiving constant reports of violence by Myanmar’s security forces, including indiscriminate attacks.
“This will only further increase radicalization,” he said on Tuesday mentioning that the grievances and unresolved plight of the Rohingya have festered for far too long and are becoming an undeniable factor in regional destabilization.
“I have written officially to the President of the Security Council to express my concern and to propose various steps to end the violence and address the underlying causes of the crisis,” said the UN Secretary General.
He said the international community must undertake concerted efforts to prevent any further escalation and to seek a holistic solution.
“I’m grateful to the authorities of Bangladesh for their decision to allow refugees to enter the country, and I encourage them to meet the needs of recent arrivals. The United Nations is and will remain totally committed to help,” he said.
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