PRESS RELEASE – Tuesday, September 5, 2017
— Stop the genocide against Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar —
Rohingya Muslims, considered the world’s most persecuted minority, have lived for centuries in Myanmar’s far western Rakhine state. Denied citizenship by the military junta since 1982, they have been stateless and without the most basic human rights, thus prey to indiscriminate rape, torture and killing by Myanmar’s militants and allied mobs.
In recent days, however, eyewitness accounts of mass rape, killing and ethnic cleansing of Rohingya Muslims have horrified the world. Families, including newborns, have been slaughtered and burned alive. Whole regions have been bombed and targeted for mass killings.
United Nations officials report that tens of thousands of Rohingya women, children and men are streaming into neighboring Bangladesh after trudging through treacherous ravines and jungles, many falling along the way.
We, members of the Evergreen Islamic Center in San Jose, CA, call upon our elected officials and lawmakers, as well as all Americans of conscience, to demand that Aung San Suu Kyi, the Nobel Peace-prize winner who is the de facto leader of Myanmar, stop the torture and killings of Rohingya Muslims. She has not said a word so far, a stance that has been denounced by many governments but unfortunately, not ours. Her silence has only emboldened Myanmar’s militants and security forces in their relentless, seemingly state-sanctioned genocide of Rohingya Muslims.
We further call upon our government to demand that the Myanmar government give Rohingya Muslims citizenship in a country where they have lived for centuries, and to accord them the same dignity, safety and security that the Buddhist majority enjoy. We also call upon our government to provide humanitarian aid to the refugees streaming into Bangladesh, and to sponsor and enforce a resolution in the UN Security Council to immediately stop the genocide of Rohingya Muslims.
Hasan Zillur Rahim
Director of Media Outreach
Evergreen Islamic Center