LAHORE Sept 5 (TNS): Chief Minister Punjab, Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif, has asked the international community, the Muslim world and the United Nations to wake up to outrages being committed on the Rohingya Muslims in Burma and pressurize the Burmese government to act fast.
He said that persecution of the Muslims in Burma represents the most ruthless genocide of a minority community in the recent history.
Expressing these views before his departure for the United Kingdom to inquire after Begum Kalsoom Nawaz wife of former PM Nawaz Sharif who recently underwent a throat surgery, the Punjab Chief Minister labeled the Burma crisis as a planned cleansing of Muslims and wondered how the world conscience can continue to slumber while innocent men, women and particularly children suffer the most terrible of crimes.
The Chief Minister called for renewed diplomatic efforts aimed at bringing the influence of the international community to bear on the Burmese government to intervene and take urgent steps to protect the Rohingya Muslims.
The Chief Minister further said that the condition of the Burmese Muslims is also a test case of international human right organizations as well as the faith leaders who should make sure that the name of a religion is not used to justify massacre of a people.
“No religion of the world sanctions violence and it is about time that the whole civilized world got together to protect their core values of humanity and interfaith harmony. Human rights are sacrosanct and we should rise up to safeguard them,” he concluded.
The violence in Myanmar is the most serious bloodshed in Rakhine since communal clashes in 2012 that killed hundreds.
Nearly 90,000 Rohingya have flooded into Bangladesh in the past 10 days following an uptick in fighting between militants and Myanmar´s military in strife-torn western Rakhine state.
The impoverished region bordering Bangladesh has been a crucible of communal tensions between Muslims and Buddhists for years, with the Rohingya forced to live under apartheid-like restrictions on movement and citizenship.
Persecution and poverty led thousands of Rohingya to flee Myanmar following the violence between Buddhists and Muslims there four years ago. Many of them were smuggled or trafficked to neighboring countries, mostly to Thailand and Malaysia.