The Edition


Maldives severes economics ties with Myanmar

Farah Ahmed
03 September 2017, MVT 22:11
Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB) personnel have intercepted 34 boats carrying some 340 Rohingyas at border points near Cox's Bazar. / AFP PHOTO / STR
Farah Ahmed
03 September 2017, MVT 22:11

Maldivian government has announced its decision to severe all economic ties with Myanmar for violating the basic human rights of millions of Rohingya Muslims in the country.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs issued a statement on Sunday evening heavily condemning the persecution of Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar.

Maldives’ economic embargo will continue until Myanmar government stops the gross rights violations of the Rohingya, ministry’s statement read.

Maldives had previously urged the United Nation’s Human Rights Council as well as its Secretary-General to take imperative action against the genocide of the Muslim population in the country.

Meanwhile, former President Mohamed Nasheed on Sunday also echoed the government’s call and said that “Aung San Suu Kyi must protect the Rohingya’s basic human rights,” and that “not everything should be driven by political expedience.”

The UN, in November 2016, officially accused the government of Myanmar of carrying out “ethnic cleansing” of Rohingya Muslims. It had earlier made allegations of Myanmar conducting campaigns of ethnic cleansing, however, the government had consistently refuted these claims.

The most recent ‘crackdown’ of Rohingya population by Myanmar’s military was imposed after police posts and an army base were attacked in late August.

Reportedly, troops fired directly at unarmed Rohingya men, women and children when the violence erupted, injuring and killing many. However, the government maintained that nearly 100 people were killed, and shifted the blame to the Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (ARSA) for allegedly launching a raid of the police outposts in the region.

Myanmar’s State Chancellor Aung San Suu Kyi refuses to discuss the quandary of the Rohingya. The Nobel Peace Prize laureate’s government refuses to recognise the Rohingya as an ethnic group in Myanmar, and have blamed the violence in Rakhine State on the “terrorists” in the region.

The Maldives, in early June, had also severed diplomatic ties with Qatar, following Saudi Arabia’s call for its alleged “support of terrorism.” However, Maldivian foreign ministry later revealed that it would still maintain its economic ties with the Arab kingdom.