Prince Charles has been urged to cancel a proposed trip to Myanmar this autumn, reports the International Business Times.
Mark Farmaner, director of Burma Campaign UK, said an official royal visit to Myanmar sent the wrong message at this time.
“To have someone of Prince Charles’s stature go to visit the country would be seen as a reward, and giving legitimacy to the government and the military that are currently violating international law,” he said.
“By standing shoulder to shoulder with the military, [Suu Kyi] has bought into the narrative they use to justify their behavior, that the nation is under serious threat from foreign terrorists”, Mark Farmaner, director of Burma Campaign UK, told the Christian Science Monitor. “Now her government is propagating that narrative, which is increasing tensions and the likelihood of further violence.”
Thanks to the TUC for supporting human rights and democracy in Burma. Doug Janke, Burma Campaign UK’s head of development, on our stall at the TUC conference today.
Fergal Keane’s article for the BBC features an image of Aung San Suu Kyi on a former Burma Campaign UK poster with the words “Please use your liberty to promote ours”.
“Aung San Suu Kyi does not control the military and they do not trust her. But her refusal to condemn well-documented military abuses provides the generals with political cover”, the article concludes.
“She was the one person in the country who really could have challenged this really ingrained and endemic prejudice against Muslims in the country and Rohingya in particular,” Mark Farmaner of Burma Campaign UK told Canada’s CBC News.
And Tun Khin, President of Burmese Rohingya Organisation UK, said “We are witnessing the most horrific situation in our history … Now I want to ask Aung San Suu Kyi: Please use your liberty to promote ours.”
Calling for international action to end the genocide against the Rohingya Muslim minority community, Asia Sentinel quotes Anna Roberts, Executive Director of Burma Campaign UK, saying that the British government has not changed its policy and is conducting business relations with Myanmar as if nothing has happened.
In its editorial today, the Guardian calls for an end to British training of the Burmese army. “The military’s head, Min Aung Hlaing, has no pedestal to topple from. Few even know his name. But they should; he is the man who calls the shots. Finding ways to exert pressure on the military is essential. Suspending the UK’s training of Myanmar’s army would be a good start.”
Experts say targeted sanctions, rather than general criticism, are the best way to help the Rohingya, reports Mint Press News.
Arguing for pressure to be placed on individual governments to stop feting Min Aung Hlaing, Mark Farmaner said “He loves his international trips – going abroad and luxury dinners. He’s posting it on his Facebook all the time.”
The international community should focus its attention on the Burmese army chief to stop the violence in Rakhine State, Mark Farmaner, director of Burma Campaign UK, told the Al Bawaba Middle East news service. “There is one person in Burma who has the responsibility for what’s happening and has the power to stop it and that is Min Aung Hlaing, the head of the military,” he said.
The Burmese army’s systematic campaign of terror against the Rohingya is the “biggest human rights crisis Burma has faced in decades”, Mark Farmaner told the BBC’s World at One today. He called for visa bans against Min Aung Hlaing and other army chiefs, an end to the British military training programme, and a global arms embargo.
Listen to BBC interview – 23.30 minutes in