16 May 2018
Myanmar Permanent Representative to UN, Ambassador U Hau Do Suan made a statement on the UN Security Council’s visit to Myanmar at the United Nations Security Council Chamber at 3:00 p.m. on 14 May 2018.
The United Nations Security Council heard a briefing on its members’ recent visits to Bangladesh from 28 to 30 April 2018 and to Myanmar from 30 April to 1 May at 3:00 p.m. on 14 May 2018. At the briefing, Ambassador U Hau Do Suan, Permanent Representative of Myanmar, made a statement and explained about Myanmar’s views and position on the Rakhine issue.
Some salient points of his statement are as follows: Myanmar government welcomed the visit of members of the Security Council to Myanmar with the hope that the visit would help them to better understand the situation on the ground, so that we can further strengthen our cooperation with the United Nations in our efforts for the safe, dignified and voluntary return of the displaced persons.
While we are trying to solve the issues in good faith through bilateral cooperation, it is most regrettable that instead of fulfilling its commitment for repatriation of the displaced persons as agreed upon in the bilateral agreements, the Bangladesh side has been deliberately making excuses one after another to stall the repatriation process. Bangladesh has been distorting the facts and telling the whole world that Myanmar is not willing to accept the return of the displaced persons.
Bangladesh is altering the truth and vilifying the Government and people of Myanmar to solicit international condemnation and to exert maximum political pressures on Myanmar. We need full and sincere cooperation of the Government of Bangladesh if the repatriation process is to be successful.
We have also found out that Bangladesh has been helping illegal occupants on Myanmar side of the international border line in building shelters, which is a blatant violation of Myanmar’s territorial integrity and sovereignty.
This action must stop immediately. When it comes to human rights abuses and violations, we should not forget the fact that the current humanitarian problem was the result of ARSA terrorist attacks on 30 Border Guard posts in Northern Rakhine. The root cause of the latest crisis and the brutal killings and atrocity committed by the terrorists on innocent ethnic Hindu, Rakhine Budhists and other minority tribes had been ignored by the western media.
The truth has been suppressed by the incessant sensational argument of Muslim victimhood narratives. Only balanced and constructive approach will lead us to the right solution of the extremely complex and politically most sensitive problem of Rakhine State. During UNSC visit to Maungtaw, on 1 May, about 20 Rakhine, Mro, Maramagyi and Hindus waited for the Council members at the Township Administrative Office to get the opportunity to testify their stories of ARSA terrorist atrocities. Due to limited time, only a Rakhine woman and a Hindu woman were able to talk about human rights abuse and atrocities perpetrated by ARSA terrorists.
Sadly, many tragic stories of the ethnic people in Rakhine have fallen on the deaf ears of some who wanted to listen to only one side of the story of their choice. These ethnic people in Maungtaw area are traumatized by the brutal acts of terrorists. They all felt insecure as minority groups in their own land by the fear instilled in their life by the ARSA. ARSA must also be held accountable for atrocities committed against civilian population in Rakhine.
Investigation of violations must include cases of terrorist atrocities as well. We are seriously concerned that Bangladesh is unwittingly allowing extremists to rear its ugly head in this part of the region. ARSA is already having a foothold in the camps, and soon it will become a strong hold of terrorism and extremism.
Recently, on May 9, a group of 4 to 6 terrorists entered into one of the refugee camps in Balukali and dragged a 46 years old Mohamed Faisal Ulhaq out of the camp and stabbed him to death. It was reported that he was advocating for return of IDPs to Rakhine among fellow displaced people in the camp.
With regard to the issuance of National Verification Card, false information has been spreading around to discourage people from complying with the requirement. In fact, the NVC is the first step for citizenship verification. NVC holders who met necessary requirements in accordance with existing law will become Myanmar citizens. Everyone residing in Myanmar has to go through the same process of verification.
The international community, including the United Nations, should work together to create an environment conducive to restoring peace, harmony and development for all people in Rakhine State. Hate narratives that promote deep rooted mistrust must stop. The present hostile attitude towards Myanmar will not contribute to building peace and harmony in the country. We have just heard a few remarks of very hostile and hateful sentiments toward my country.
That is quite unfortunate. Discriminatory treatment and one-sided support would only lead to further polarization and escalation of tension between different communities in the region. Bangladesh must cooperate fully with Myanmar in sincerity in the implementation of bilateral agreement for repatriation of displaced persons.
We are confident that we will be able to solve the present humanitarian problem and long-term peace and development of Rakhine State if Myanmar and Bangladesh work hand in hand with the spirit of mutual respect, genuine desire to help the displaced persons and the spirit of good neighborliness.
Notwithstanding all the daunting challenges we are facing, the Government of Myanmar will spare no effort to bring peace, harmony and development to all people in Rakhine State.