FO concerned over Myanmar Muslims’ plight
ISLAMABAD, July 26: The Foreign Office expressed concern on Thursday over attacks on Muslims in Myanmar, but noted that the situation had now greatly improved.
“We are concerned by the situation in Myanmar and my understanding is that things have improved substantially,” Foreign Office spokesman Moazzam Khan said at the weekly media briefing.
His comments came shortly after outlawed Tehrik Taliban Pakistan demanded that the government should sever ties with Myanmar and threatened to attack the country (Myanmar) to avenge the killing of Rohingya Muslims.
Though the FO spokesman did not directly refer to the statement by the banned outfit, it was obvious from his phraseology that the government strongly disapproved of it.
“Myanmar is a friendly country. There are various ways and channels through which you can convey your concern,” he said.
The spokesman said the Pakistan government was confident that the Myanmar government would take all necessary and appropriate measures to address the issue of attacks on Rohingya Muslims.
Although western Myanmar has been in the grip of violence since late May, attacks over the past month and a half have been largely targeted against Rohingya Muslims. Both security forces and ethnic Rakhine Buddhists, according to Amnesty International, have carried out targeted attacks against Muslims, which included killings, rape and physical abuse.
The TTP, which is essentially a Pakistan-focused terrorist outfit, in a statement on Thursday said: “We will take revenge of your (Myanmar Muslims) blood.”
The statement also urged the government to cut off ties with Myanmar and warned that it too could face attacks if it failed to do so.
“Otherwise we will not only attack Burmese interests anywhere but will also attack the Pakistani fellows of Burma one by one,” the TTP spokesman said.
BORDER TENSIONS: Foreign Office spokesman Moazzam Khan said that Pakistan expected Afghanistan and Isaf to address the issue of sanctuaries of militants in Afghan provinces of Nooristan and Kunar from where they were launching attacks against Pakistani security forces.
“We are actively engaging the Afghan government and the Isaf command on attacks from Kunar and Nooristan areas. We take these attacks very seriously and hope that corrective measures will soon be taken by the Afghan government and Isaf command to address this issue,” the spokesman said.