Statement on the recent violent incidents in Rakhine State, Myanmar By the United Nations Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator a.i. Eamonn Murphy

(Yangon, 1 July 2013): The latest incident in Kyein Ni Pyin on 27 June in which two internally displaced persons (IDPs) are reported to have died and others injured as a result of an incident involving security personnel, is the second such event in recent weeks where displaced people have lost their lives protesting about plans for their relocation to temporary shelters.
Any plans for relocation of IDPs should be based on consultation and voluntariness, and resolved without the use of force. It is deeply saddening and disturbing when people are killed, particularly when they are vulnerable and need protection.
It is urgent that broader confidence and trust building measures between the communities and the Government are stepped up, starting with clear communication of the Government’s vision and plans for the short and long term for all people in Rakhine State, particularly those currently displaced. It is only when we can bring back ‘hope’ in the lives of all the people of Rakhine State, that we will be able to ensure peace and harmony.

In addition, on the 30 June in Thandwe in Rakhine State, a number of houses were burnt down after tensions ignited in the community. It is important that preventive measures are taken as quickly as possible so the violence does not spread further.

The recent incidents show that urgent actions are needed – we do not have the luxury of time and the present situation should not be allowed to continue. The international community stands ready to assist in any way it can.

For more information, please contact:
Aye Win, National Information Officer, United Nations Information Centre, Yangon aye.win@undp.org /0095(0)9421060343
Kirsten Mildren, Regional Public Information Officer, UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), mildren@un.org/+973223891