Burma

88 Generation Peace and Open Society Stand by Govt on Rakhine

By Kyaw Kha 13 September 2017

YANGON — At a press conference on Wednesday, 88 Generation Peace and Open Society said it stands by President U Htin Kyaw and State Counselor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi regarding conflict in northern Rakhine State.

“The government is working hard for democratic transition, it would be wrong to criticize or weaken them,” U Jimmy, one of the leaders of 88 Generation Peace and Open Society, told reporters.

Muslim militants attacked police outposts in Rakhine State on Aug. 25, killing at least 13.

International pressure has been mounting on Myanmar, after military clearance operations that followed have sent some 400,000 self-identifying Rohingya fleeing to Bangladesh.

Prominent 88 generation leader U Min Ko Naing said the state’s problems were not racial or religious but to do with immigration laws and terrorism.

“They [self-identifying Rohingya] are not one of 135 ethnic groups in Myanmar,” he said.

U Min Ko Naing warned of violence elsewhere in the country, threatening stability, but said the 88 generation would not resort to violence.

U Min Ko Naing warned of possible instigation of violence elsewhere in the country. He said 88 Generation Peace and Open Society does not accept this behavior but would not use violence to stop it.

Leaders of 88 Generation Peace and Open Society urged citizens to exercise caution and not be played by those who would take advantage of the situation to instigate instability.

One man was arrested in Magwe Region’s Taungdwingyi after a nationalist mob—some armed with swords—attacked a mosque and property owned by Muslims before being dispersed by riot police with rubber bullets on Sunday evening.

On Tuesday, a 27-year man was detained after shouting on the street to kill followers of Islam in Yangon’s Sanchaung Township.

A high-level meeting including members of Myanmar’s National Defense and Security Council (NDSC) was held in Naypyidaw on Wednesday afternoon to discuss the situation in Rakhine State and issues relating to rule of law in Myanmar.

Joining the talks was President U Htin Kyaw, State Counselor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, both of the country’s vice presidents, the Upper House Speaker, military chief, deputy military chief, and the ministers of home affairs, defense, and border affairs.

The government has instructed security forces to take harsh action in line with the law against those who exploit the concerns and fear of people who commit violent acts.

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