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European Parliament delegation postpones Myanmar visit

ANI  |  Paris [France] 

A European delegation has postponed its planned visit to Myanmar to an unknown date due to the Rohingya crisis.

Anadolu quoted Bernd Lange, head of the EP's Committee on International Trade, as saying that the group "decided to postpone the delegation to Myanmar to an unknown date as it was clear that the current political and human rights situation in the country... does not allow for a fruitful discussion on a potential EU-Myanmar investment agreement".

"It is clear that under these conditions, the ratification of an investment agreement with Myanmar is not possible," he added.

Earlier on Thursday the European passed a resolution calling on the "military and security forces in Myanmar to immediately cease the killings, harassment, and rape of the Rohingya people, and the burning of their homes".

The Myanmar "and State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi in particular, should condemn unequivocally all incitement to racial or religious hatred and combat social discrimination and hostilities against the Rohingya minority," said the resolution.

UNICEF said on Thursday that about 400,000 Rohingya Muslims have fled Myanmar since Aug. 25, some 60 percent of them children.

United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Wednesday reiterated his call for Muslims from Myanmar's Rakhine state to be granted nationality or at least a legal status that would allow them to lead a normal life.

"I call on the Myanmar authorities to suspend military action, end the violence, uphold the rule of law, and recognize the right of return of all those who had to leave the country," the Secretary-General said in his first press conference since the opening of the 72nd session of the General Assembly.

Guterres repeated his call for "an effective action plan" to address the root causes of the situation, which he said he been left to fester for decades and has now escalated beyond Myanmar's borders, destabilizing the region.

The refugees are fleeing a fresh security operation in which security forces and Buddhist mobs have killed men, women and children, looted homes, and torched Rohingya villages.

According to the of Bangladesh -- where thousands of Rohingya have fled -- around 3,000 Rohingya have been killed in the crackdown.

The Rohingya, described by the UN as among the world's most persecuted peoples, have faced heightened fears of attack since dozens were killed in communal violence in 2012.

The Rohingya are a minority ethnic group located in Myanmar's western Rakhine state and are considered to be a variation of the Sunni religion. Since the Rohingya are considered to be illegal Bengali immigrants and were denied recognition as a religion by the of Myanmar, the dominant group, the Rakhine, rejects the label "Rohingya" and have started to persecute the Rohingya.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Fri, September 15 2017. 01:57 IST
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