WORLD NEWS – GB – OPINION – Putting Myanmar election results into perspective


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* The writer is a Burmese coordinator for the Free Rohingya Alliance and a fellow at the (Genocide) Documentation Center – Cambodia

Five days after the United States ended its presidential election in which incumbent Donald Trump and his primary racist campaign were defeated, Myanmar also held its general elections.

As expected, the ruling National League for Democracy led by Aung San Suu Kyi crushed a landslide victory, crushing the Union Solidarity and Development Party – the political agent of the military that overtly promotes Islamophobia, xenophobia and racism against the Rohingya.

A joint protest by international human rights NGOs against the Myanmar elections focused on the deliberate exclusion of the Rohingya ethnic minority from the electoral contest, whether as candidates or voters. One cannot help but think that all of this is a bit useless.

Protest highlights the systematic denial of basic human rights and citizenship to the Rohingya as a national community in Myanmar of its linguistic and ethnic identity. Nevertheless, it is inevitable amid the ongoing genocide. The aim of genocide, after all, is to totally or substantially destroy the target victim’s community, with its national, ethnic, racial and religious identity – some might add « political and economic identity » (as in capitalism or communism).

Los Angeles Times November editorial. 14 reads, “Nothing tarnished Suu Kyi’s international reputation and disappointed her fans more than her refusal to protect Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar, one of the most persecuted populations in the world.. Unfortunately, many human rights activists who once revered her now believe that she is a Buddhist from Myanmar and does not simply recognize the rights of the Rohingya to be full citizens.. .

While Myanmar State Counselor Aung San Suu Kyi is the undisputedly most influential politician in the country whose influence over the Burmese Buddhist electorate remains unrivaled, she has some strength to reverse what my academic colleague Natalie Brenham and I call the slow-moving genocide of the Rohingya..

The general persecution of the Rohingya genocide began. The military dictatorship of Ni Win in the late 1970s under the pretext of illegal immigration of Bengali or Bengali citizens through Myanmar and the western border of the river. . During the past 40 years, several chronic waves of mass cleansing have been primarily perpetrated by the Burmese Armed Forces, and have involved all three branches of the Defense Services (Air Force, Navy and Army) known as the Tatmadaw.. .

The United Nations did not begin to deal with the criminal nature of their expulsion to Bangladesh until the two successive waves of violent deportation and the destruction of the Rohingya in 2016 and 2017 respectively.. . For decades. The exemplary involvement of the United Nations was through its refugee agency with a focus on the humanitarian needs of Rohingya victims.

There have been major breakthroughs regarding the emerging global recognition that Myanmar is committing genocide.

The Myanmar genocide and crimes against humanity directed against them have fallen on the radar of the International Criminal Court, with its focus on identifying the individual criminal responsibilities of Myanmar’s leaders, civilians and military alike, and the International Court of Justice with its focus on the responsibility of the Myanmar state in upholding the Genocide Convention.

Almost all credible human rights research institutions and studies, with the exception of Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International, have come to the scientific conclusion – not just an explanation – that Myanmar is committing a scriptural model – not ethnic cleansing due to the lack of textbooks or international law on Ethnic cleansing – genocide as explained by the late Raphael to McCain, father of genocide as defined in international law and as a concept.

World public opinion appears to have reached its conclusion: Myanmar has succeeded in the genocide of the Rohingya as a distinct ethnic group. While the Myanmar government and the majority Buddhist public continue to deny the verifiable identity, history and presence of the Rohingya in western Myanmar for at least 200 years since the time of the French Revolution in 1789, the International Court of Justice (ICJ) has officially issued the legal status of the Rohingya as an ethnic community , When it ruled that the Rohingya qualify as a protected national minority under the Genocide Convention in January this year.

Dictatorship or quasi-democracy, regardless of the form of the regime in Myanmar It is assumed that it is clear that Myanmar as a member state of the United Nations has not shown any sign of reversing the genocidal policies towards this protected group. Besides, three decades after the Burmese people carried out the People Power Uprisings – popularly known as 8. 8. 88 post-dated August. 8, 1988 – against the military dictatorship of the ex-general shrouded in socialism. Ni Win, the vast majority of the Burmese people have not appreciated nor internalized the neoliberal standards of universal human rights. This was noted by Myanmar observers and journalists.

Yangon-based journalist Ben Dunan, Frontier Myanmar, wrote that “journalists and activists who dare to criticize a popular government have reported regular violations by angry members of the public, and that the demonstrations in favor of press freedom attracted no more than a few dozen participants.. Election results indicate that the electoral cost is low for a government that puts its critics in jail because few voters sympathize with them.. It reveals the wide gap that exists between human rights discourse and popular sentiment.

Additionally, Burmese voters do not appear to be too concerned about the fact that the Union Election Commission set up by Win Myint – the puppet president of Suki – has canceled elections, in whole or in part, in more than 50 minority towns and villages, due to security reasons.

There was little or no public protest against the nearly two million citizens, after being denied the right to choose their local and national representatives even in a non-democratic parliamentary system.. The majority of these disenfranchised voters are from state-recognized national minorities such as Chen, Rakhine, Kachin, Shan, Taang, Karen, etc.. . Despite their full citizenship and their « original » status in the eyes of the Burmese state, non-Rohingya minorities have long been subjected to a form of colonial subjugation at the hands of both the Suu Kyi National League for Democracy party and the country’s military.. Establishment.

It is no wonder then that the Rohingya, the subject of systematic and continuous propaganda of the genocide – according to which the Rohingya are unlawful, undesirable, and without citizenship rights – have not been mentioned in any election campaign by any party, except as a negative object to achieve a point of political pie with Mass genocide.

Unfortunately, there is an ugly, disturbing truth about the Myanmar elections and the majority of Bama or Burmese electorate, which has just given the NLD and its authoritarian leader Suu Kyi a decisive mandate, which is the apparent absence of an appreciation of basic human rights or minority protection as guiding principles in the nation’s electoral policy Over the past ten years.

Over the past 30 years, Myanmar has hosted a constellation of award-winning human rights defenders, famous dissidents, pro-democracy journalists and well-known civil society actors, many of whom spent half their lives behind bars and in solitary confinement. Aung San Suu Kyi is only the most famous – and thus frequently condemned.

Ironically, international media, human rights organizations, and governments who previously created her as an Oxford-educated and Eastern but liberal icon standing up to brutal, ugly generals are now engaging in ritual condemnation of Suki.

Myanmar voters continue to inspire to give the Suu Kyi a third landslide victory since the first NLD electoral victory in 1991 which brazenly ignored the generals. But voters in the NLD majority vote against what they fear – a return to oppressive military rule or open domination – in exchange for a new collective vision of a new, anti-racist, democratic Myanmar that values ​​and respects basic human rights as inalienable, regardless of race. Or belief, race, or immigration history.

Against this background, the elections rounds in Myanmar will not reverse the colonial treatment of the country for all its non-Bama or non-Burmese residents, nor will it end the country’s near-complete genocide against the Rohingya.

* The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of Anadolu Agency.


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Myanmar (Burma), Aung San Suu Kyi, Rohingya people, United Nations, National League for Democracy, Bangladesh, Rohingya Refugee Crisis 2015

World News – GB – OPINION – Putting Myanmar Findings Elections in perspective


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