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EU urges Myanmar to take meaningful action on Rohingya issue

Members of the 1.1 million group, who identify themselves by the term "Rohingya", are seen by many Myanmar Buddhists as illegal immigrants from Bangladesh. Photograph: (Getty)

Reuters Yangon Jun 22, 2016, 12.11 PM (IST)
The European Union ambassador to Myanmar, Roland Kobia, urged the new government to take 'meaningful actions' regarding the contentious Rohingya issue in a news conference in Yangon today.

Myanmar leader Aung San Suu Kyi has told the UN Special Rapporteur on Human Rights that the government will avoid using the term "Rohingya" to describe a persecuted Muslim minority in the country's northwest, an official said on Monday.

Kobia said the EU welcomes the new government 'assuring commitment' to address the sensitive issue, insisting the government to 'listen' more to the community in Rakhine and to 'act accordingly'.

"Terminology issues are important, we know because they refer to wider and deeper principles but we believe that the situation in Rakhine also deserves urgent and meaningful action on the ground," Kobia said.

Members of the 1.1 million group, who identify themselves by the term "Rohingya" and live in apartheid-like conditions, are seen by many Myanmar Buddhists as illegal immigrants from Bangladesh.

The term is a divisive issue.

The EU also announced to donate a total of Euros 688 million ($776.61 million) to Myanmar in development aid, focusing on various areas including education, rural development and good governance.

(Reuters)
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