- Religious Freedom
On September 28, 2017, the New York Times published an op-ed by the steering group of the International Panel of Parliamentarians for Freedom of Religion or Belief (IPPFoRB):
To the Editor:
As members of parliaments and members of the Steering Group of the International Panel of Parliamentarians for Freedom of Religion or Belief, we condemn the violence faced by civilian populations in Rakhine State, Myanmar. We call on all parties responsible for the atrocities to cease and desist.
Myanmar’s military leaders must reverse course and begin to contribute to the restoration of stability and peace in the region. Their actions are only encouraging a deepened interethnic divide affecting vulnerable civilian populations.
Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, Myanmar’s de facto leader, must demonstrate the courage she has shown in the past and propose a solution that includes the reinstatement of citizenship for the Muslim Rohingya population and their full involvement in Myanmar’s society. After years of persecution, it is time that Myanmar’s leadership embarked on a path of reconciliation with its religious and ethnic minorities.
It is our firm belief that only a concerted and coordinated effort by international, regional and domestic stakeholders will lead to a cessation of the violence, division and disdain for religious liberty afflicting Myanmar.
(BARONESS) ELIZABETH BERRIDGE
ABID RAJA, LEONARDO QUINTAO
The writers are from Canada, Britain, Norway and Brazil, respectively.