Statement by Vijay Nambiar, Special Adviser to the Secretary-General on Myanmar

The Special Adviser of the Secretary-General, who reached Yangon this evening, expressed deep sorrow at the tragic loss of lives and destruction in Meiktila township in Mandalay division.

While firm action by the authorities was needed to prevent further loss of life or spread of violence, the continued fostering of communal harmony and preservation of peace and tranquility among the people was the most urgent priority and this was the responsibility of all sections of society. Religious leaders and other community leaders must also publicly call on their followers to abjure violence, respect the law and promote peace.

In this regard, the Special Adviser said the high degree of unity and commonality of purpose displayed by Myanmar’s top government leaders, leaders of the other parties and of Parliament was particularly praiseworthy. He was hopeful this would calm the situation though the authorities needed to be continuously vigilant.

21 March 2013