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Obama Calls on Burma, China to Respect Religious Freedom

7 February 2014

US President Barack Obama has called on Burma and China to make greater efforts to ensure religious freedom, AFP reports. The remarks were made Thursday at a National Prayer Breakfast, where the president said religious freedom was a topic he had raised with his Burmese counterpart Thein Sein, emphasizing the need to respect the rights of Burma’s minority Muslims and Christians. “Nations that do not uphold these rights sow the bitter seeds of instability and violence and extremism,” Obama was quoted as saying. The last two years have seen several bouts of violence against Burma’s Muslim minority, and Christians in Chin and Kachin states have long complained of persecution at the hands of the military.