News / Asia

    UN, UK Call for Burma to Allow Humanitarian Aid into Rakhine

    A Burmese Muslim family, who identify themselves as long-persecuted “Rohingya” Muslims, look out from their tents at Da Paing camp for Muslim refugees in north of Sittwe, Rakhine State, western Burma, April 2, 2014.
    A Burmese Muslim family, who identify themselves as long-persecuted “Rohingya” Muslims, look out from their tents at Da Paing camp for Muslim refugees in north of Sittwe, Rakhine State, western Burma, April 2, 2014.
    Gabrielle Paluch
    The U.N.’s Special Rapporteur for Human Rights to Burma is urging the government to allow foreign aid workers to return to Rakhine state. The workers were evacuated last month because of ethnic unrest, but the U.N. warns their departure has led to severe consequences for at least 140,000 displaced people living in temporary camps.
     
    U.N. spokesperson Pierre Peron said time is running out for the 140,000 people displaced by violence who are living in camps.
     
    "We have people who will run out of food in the next two weeks if we can't distribute food to the camps," he said. "We have a peak in the dry season at the moment and water levels are running very low and we need to be able to bring water to people who need it and most importantly people need to have access to health services and at the moment emergency health cases are not being referred to the hospitals simply because the NGOs are not there."
     
    For years, international rights groups have criticized government policies that deny the Rohingya citizenship, and restrict their travel.
     
    During the past two years, ethnic and religious tensions have led to violence between the Muslim Rohingya and Buddhist Rakhine communities in Rakhine state. Hundreds of thousands of Rohingya have fled their homes for temporary camps, where they depend on international aid for survival.
     
    Foreign aid groups were forced to leave in March after violent mobs attacked some offices.  Tomas Quintana, the U.N.'s Special Rapporteur for human rights to Burma, warned that an impending humanitarian crisis now looms.
     
    This is the second time Quintana has raised the possibility of crimes against humanity in Rakhine state, but Burmese officials contacted by VOA declined to respond to the claim.
     
    On Monday, a senior member of the British Foreign Office, Hugo Swire, met Burma's ambassador in London to raise concerns about humanitarian aid.
     
    Joseph Fisher, a spokesperson for the British embassy in Rangoon, said Swire hopes to urge the government to fully restore humanitarian aid.

    "As a result of those developments hundreds of thousands of people in Rakhine state mainly from the Rohingya community are not receiving vital and medical and humanitarian aid," he said. "So the minister, in his discussions with the ambassador, called on the Burmese government to urgently restore humanitarian access to all communities in need and to ensure the security of aid workers and all communities in Rakhine state."
     
    Last week, U.S. Department of State spokesperson Marie Harf urged the Burmese government to rescind travel restrictions placed on aid workers. Burma claimed these were in place for the safety of aid workers.
     
    A government investigation into the attacks in Sittwe was scheduled to present its findings to the president Monday, but the government has yet to announce the commission's findings.

    You May Like

    US Watching as North Korea Holds Biggest Political Meeting in 36 Years

    Workers' Party Congress set for Friday; Washington anticipating possibility of another missile launch or nuclear test as top officials gather

    Video Pop Icon Prince Quietly Helped Afghan Orphans for Years

    He sent thousands of dollars to help an aid group rebuild a training center for orphan boy and girl scouts in Kabul, but kept his involvement secret

    Britain’s Muslims See London Mayor Race as Victory

    Mere running of 45-year-old former government minister and son of Pakistani immigrants Sadiq Khan seen by many as turning point

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    by: lstmohican from: USA
    April 08, 2014 10:09 AM
    There are several reasons the aid workers should not be allowed in Myanmar.

    Myanmar, unlike the neighboring Bangladesh, has food surplus and can feed its own people and a few countries around it. The MSF had only three overseas doctors can be supplemented by the local doctors.

    The aid workers were breaking the immigration laws of Myanmar by illegally entering as tourists. They willingly would not follow the custom and norms of the host country. Though the Buddhist people of Myanmar are very forgiving, the final straw came when an aid worker desecrated a Buddhist flag.

    It is an undeniable fact that the international organizations are aiding and abetting known Islamic terrorists with links to Al Qaeda and Taliban. Read more by searching “scribd.com Islamic Rohingya Terrorists Al Qaeda Taliban in Myanmar”. These terrorists have conspired to annex part of to establish an independent country called “Newrosia” that would be ruled by Sharia law.

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Donations Rescue Afghan Parents, Children From Forced Labori
    X
    May 05, 2016 6:44 PM
    A Facebook campaign organized by a VOA radio host raised 150,000 Afghan rupees to rescue a family from forced labor at a brick kiln in Nangarhar province – the result of the father’s unpaid debt. Video by a VOA reporter in Jalalabad went viral this week and triggered the Facebook campaign.
    Video

    Video Donations Rescue Afghan Parents, Children From Forced Labor

    A Facebook campaign organized by a VOA radio host raised 150,000 Afghan rupees to rescue a family from forced labor at a brick kiln in Nangarhar province – the result of the father’s unpaid debt. Video by a VOA reporter in Jalalabad went viral this week and triggered the Facebook campaign.
    Video

    Video Kurdish Troops Recount Firefight Which Killed US Navy SEAL

    A U.S. Navy SEAL killed Tuesday, when Islamic State fighters punched through Kurdish lines in northern Iraq, was part of a quick reaction force sent to extract other U.S. troops trapped by the surprise offensive. VOA's Kawa Omar spoke with Kurdish troops in the town of Telskuf -- the scene of what U.S. officials called a "dynamic firefight."
    Video

    Video British Lawmakers Warn EU Exit Talks Could Last A Decade

    Leaving the European Union would mean difficult negotiations that could take years to complete, according to a bipartisan group of British lawmakers. While the group did not recommend a vote either way, the lawmakers noted trade deals between the EU and non-EU states take between four and nine years on average. Henry Ridgwell reports on the mounting debate over whether Britain should stay or exit the EU as the June vote approaches.
    Video

    Video NASA Astronauts Train for Commercial Space Flights

    Since the last Shuttle flight in 2011, the United States has been relying on Russian rockets to launch fresh crews to the International Space Station. But that may change in the next few years. NASA and several private space companies are developing advanced capsules capable of taking humans into low orbit and beyond. As VOA's George Putic reports, astronauts are already training for commercial spacecraft in flight simulators.
    Video

    Video US Worried Political Chaos in Iraq Will Hurt IS Fight

    The White House is expressing concern about rising political chaos in Iraq and the impact it could have on the fight against the Islamic State. The U.S. says Iraq needs a stable, central government to help push back the group. But some say Baghdad may not have a unified government any time soon. VOA's White House correspondent Mary Alice Salinas reports.
    Video

    Video Press Freedom in Myanmar Fragile, Limited

    As Myanmar begins a new era with a democratically elected government, many issues of the past confront the new leadership. Among them is press freedom in a country where journalists have been routinely harassed or jailed.
    Video

    Video Taliban Threats Force Messi Fan to Leave Afghanistan

    A young Afghan boy, who recently received autographed shirts and a football from his soccer hero Lionel Messi, has fled his country due to safety concerns. He and his family are now taking refuge in neighboring Pakistan. VOA's Ayaz Gul reports from Islamabad.
    Video

    Video Major Rubbish Burning Experiment Captures Destructive Greenhouse Gases

    The world’s first test to capture environmentally harmful carbon dioxide gases from the fumes of burning rubbish took place recently in Oslo, Norway. The successful experiment at the city's main incinerator plant, showcased a method for capturing most of the carbon dioxide. VOA’s Deborah Block has more.
    Video

    Video EU Visa Block Threatens To Derail EU-Turkey Migrant Deal

    Turkish citizens could soon benefit from visa-free travel to Europe as part of the recent deal between the EU and Ankara to stem the flow of refugees. In return, Turkey has pledged to keep the migrants on Turkish soil and crack down on those who are smuggling them. Brussels is set to publish its latest progress report Wednesday — but as Henry Ridgwell reports from London, many EU lawmakers are threatening to veto the deal over human rights concerns.
    Video

    Video Tensions Rising Ahead of South China Sea Ruling

    As the Philippines awaits an international arbitration ruling on a challenge to China's claims to nearly all of the South China Sea, it is already becoming clear that regardless of which way the decision goes, the dispute is intensifying. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
    Video

    Video Painting Captures President Lincoln Assassination Aftermath

    A newly restored painting captures the moments following President Abraham Lincoln’s assassination in 1865. It was recently unveiled at Ford’s Theatre in Washington, where America’s 16th president was shot. It is the only known painting by an eyewitness that captures the horror of that fateful night. VOA’s Julie Taboh tells us more about the painting and what it took to restore it to its original condition.
    Video

    Video Displaced By War, Syrian Artist Finds Inspiration Abroad

    Saudi-born Syrian painter Mohammad Zaza is among the millions who fled their home for an uncertain future after Syria's civil war broke out. Since fleeing Syria, Zaza has lived in Lebanon, Egypt, Jordan and now Turkey where his latest exhibition, “Earth is Blue like an Orange,” opened in Istanbul. He spoke with VOA about how being displaced by the Syrian civil war has affected the country's artists.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora