Urgent Rakhine Proposal Blocked in Lower House

By Htet Naing Zaw 28 August 2017

NAYPYITAW — Lower House Speaker U Win Myint blocked an urgent proposal by the opposition Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP) regarding Rakhine State on Monday.

USDP lawmaker from Zayarthiri Township U Hla Htay Win, who was formerly the Chief of the General Staff (Army, Navy and Air) of the Myanmar Army, planned to put forward a proposal to the Lower House to condemn the “brutal terrorist acts in Maungdaw that threaten sovereignty of the State, rule of law and regional stability.” Lawmaker U Aung Thaung Shwe of the Arakan National Party (ANP) representing Rakhine State’s Buthidaung Township planned to second his proposal.

“U Hla Htay Win planned to submit an urgent proposal to denounce the terrorist acts and I planned to second him. But, the parliamentary speaker didn’t allow the proposal to be submitted,” U Aung Thaung Shwe told The Irrawaddy.

He suggested that Parliament push for declaring a state of emergency in Maungdaw.

“There is a need for a military administration and a state of emergency. There is no civil administration now. Administration has collapsed along with the rule of law,” he said.

On Friday, USDP lawmaker U Thaung Aye also made an unsuccessful attempt to submit an urgent proposal to the Union Parliament following an outbreak of attacks in Maungdaw.

U Hla Htay Win, who views the unrest in Maungdaw as a threat to national security, told reporters on June 29 that the National League for Democracy (NLD) government was not doing enough to address the instability in Maungdaw.

Following coordinated attacks by Rohingya insurgents on 30 police outposts in Buthidaung, Maungdaw and Rathedaung townships on Friday morning, the government has branded the Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (ARSA) a terrorist organization.

Thousands of Rohingya Muslim and Rakhine Buddhist civilians have fled the area as the worst violence the region has seen in years continues. More than 100 people have been killed in the attacks since Friday.