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Asean Declines to Champion Rohingya Cause

20 November 2012

The general secretary of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) said that the regional grouping can’t force Burma to accept the Rohingya, a Muslim minority living mainly in Arakan State, as citizens. “There are other issues that Asean cannot expect to be involved in more effectively, [such as] citizenship … [I]f a government of a country says ‘These people are not [our] citizens,’ I don’t think it’s Asean’s role to go in and say, ‘You change your law!’” Surin Pitsuwan, the Asean chief, said last Friday, according to a report by Mizzima.