MANILA — Sept 21, 2017: Malaysia has again questioned the manner in which Myanmar has been addressing the Rohingya issue, saying it had denied permission for the international community to provide humanitarian aid and more disappointingly, killed Rohingya women and children.
While the country has no intention of meddling in Myanmar’s domestic affairs, Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Zahid Hamidi stated that it cannot accept the crackdown on the Rohingya and wants the issue to be resolved in a democratic way and in accordance with international standards.
“The question of security is their domestic matter and Malaysia has no intention to interfere. However, as a country progressing towards democracy, it should implement the democratic system,” Zahid said to Malaysian journalists at the conclusion of the 11th Asean Ministerial Meeting on Transnational Crime (AMMTC) here today.
Zahid said his spontaneous statement reflected the official view of the Malaysian government and people. The Myanmar representatives to the meeting had spoken justifying the military action against the Rohingya whom they branded as Islamic terrorists and militants.
“I cannot accept that situation. I asked (at the meeting) whether women and children are also classified as militants.
“Is humanitarian aid denied access to Myanmar, so much so that we and the international community are forced to use neighbouring countries, especially Bangladesh, to channel the humanitarian aid?” he asked.
Zahid said he hoped Myanmar would be able to better address the issue and treat the ethnic Rohingya as human beings and not animals.
“This is to express the firm concern of the Malaysian government and people on the conduct against the Rohingya,” he emphasised.
Asked about Myanmar’s reaction, Zahid said he did not see any sign of remorse in the Myanmar leaders but the statement drew a positive reaction from the other Asean countries. — Bernama