Sunday, August 25, 2013

Mobs raid homes of Muslims in Myanmar

Some 1,000 Buddhists have reportedly attacked properties belonging to the Muslim community in northwestern Myanmar.

The rampage broke out shortly before Saturday midnight in the town of Kanbalu. Seven Muslim-owned shops and 15 houses were destroyed by the Buddhist mob.

The mob demanded that Myanmar’s police hand over a man suspected of attempting to rape a Buddhist woman.

Witnesses say police tried to disperse the angry crowd but failed to prevent the destruction.

Muslims are regularly targeted by riots in Myanmar. In 2012, similar violence in the western state of Rakhine left nearly 200 people - mostly Rohingya Muslims - dead.

The Saturday attack comes four days after the UN human rights envoy to Myanmar came under an attack by a group of Buddhists in central Myanmar.

UN Special Rapporteur on Human Rights Tomas Ojea Quintana said on August 21 that 200 angry Buddhists mobbed his car after he landed in the central town of Meikhtila to investigate attacks on Rohingya Muslims in the region.

In March, a wave of anti-Muslim riots killed over 40 people, destroyed hundreds of homes and displaced thousands in Meikhtila.

Over the past months, hundreds of Rohingyas are believed to have been killed and thousands displaced in attacks by extremist Buddhists.

The extremists frequently attack Rohingyas, and Myanmar’s government has been accused of failing to protect the Muslim minority.

Rohingyas are said to be Muslim descendants of Persian, Turkish, Bengali, and Pathan origin, who migrated to Myanmar as early as the eighth century.

Source: Press TV

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