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Mosque and Muslim Orphanage Burned Down in Most Recent Myanmar Violence

31 May 2013 General 17 Comments Email This Post Email This Post

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Mosque and Muslim Orphanage Burned Down in Most Recent Myanmar Violence

In the eastern state of Shan a Buddhist mob went on a rampage after allegations that a Muslim attempted to set fire to a Shan Buddhist after the two had an altercation at a petrol station.

We have seen previously that the slightest provocation or rumor, as in the alleged case of a Muslim woman bumping into a Buddhist monk and causing him to drop his begging bowl, can lead to horrible violence against the Muslim minority.

(via. AlJazeera English)

Myanmar’s government has called for calm after mobs burned down a Muslim orphanage, a mosque and shops during a new eruption of religious violence in the northeastern Shan state.

At least one person has died and four others were injured, state television said.

Authorities imposed a curfew late on Tuesday in Lashio, about 700km northeast of Yangon, after a mob of 200 local residents surrounded a local police station demanding they hand over a Muslim detainee.

Nay Win, 48, a Muslim from a nearby township, was arrested after allegedly setting fire to Aye Aye Win, 24, a Shan Buddhist, earlier in the day after the two had an altercation at a petrol station, Lashio police said.

The woman was admitted to hospital.

“According to witnesses, she was not burned seriously but has injuries on her face and arms,” Sai Sam Min, a member of parliament from Lashio, said.

Al Jazeera’s Wayne Hay, reporting from Yangon, said the situation in Lashio had already been brought under control by police.

He said he had received reports that some officials in Lashio, including the fire department, “did very little” to stop the Buddhist mob from attacking Muslim establishments.

Myanmar’s recent sectarian violence has been partly blamed on the 969 movement, launched in February by an extremist monk in Mandalay named Wirathu, who encourages Buddhists to shun Muslim-owned shops.

There are less than 2,000 Myanmar Muslims living in Lashio, sources said, of the city’s estimated population of about 130,000.

Third outbreak

The incident in Shan state is the third outbreak of anti-Muslim violence to flare up in Myanmar this year.

On April 30, in Oakkan, about 100km north of Yangon, Buddhists went on a rampage after a Muslim woman allegedly bumped into a monk, breaking his begging bowl.

One Muslim man was killed, and a mosque and 77 houses were set on fire.

In March at least 44 people were killed in sectarian strife in in Meiktila, 450km north of Yangon, where at least 8,000 people, most of them Muslims, were left homeless in riots prompted by an apparent row at a Muslim-owned gold shop.

Deadly unrest last year, mainly targeted at Rohingya Muslims in the western Rakhine state, left about 200 people dead and tens of thousands displaced.

Jim Della-Giacoma of the International Crisis Group says Myanmar needs to address the issue of sectarian violence before it gets worse.

“I think we are seeing a very weak law-enforcement and some poor nation-building,” he told Al Jazeera from Jakarta, Indonesia.

“Anybody conducting violence should be punished.

“If you cannot keep these communities, be they Muslim, Christian, Hindu or Buddhist living together, then the future of the country is being challenged here”.

Della-Giacoma said the violence could have the potential of spreading to Yangon if the sectarian issue was not resolved.

Related:

-Reform, riot and return in Myanmar

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17 Comments »

  1. This makes me so sad

  2. :(

  3. :(

  4. That is disgusting.

  5. All in the name of ‘religion.’ I always thought Buddhists were non-violent. :/

  6. the big dilemma is then they come out in media and say ISLAM is terrorism and MUSLIMS are terrorists

  7. :-(

  8. :-(

  9. May all the violence in entire world stop.

  10. May all the violence in entire world stop.

  11. I don’t know where this whole “non-violent Buddhist” thing started. People need to study more. The periodical massacres of ethnic Vietnamese in Cambodia, the killing of Vietnamese Boat People by Thai pirates, the murderous civil war in China, the millions of people slaughtered in China and Korea by the Imperial Japanese Army in the’ 30s – who was doing all this? Violence is endemic to human nature and has nothing to do with religion or ethnic background.

  12. Sickening

  13. Sad.

  14. We need another Gandhi!! In his last year, unhappy at the partition of India, Gandhi worked to stop the carnage between Muslims, Hindus and Sikhs that raged in the border area between India and Pakistan. He was assassinated on 30 January 1948 by Nathuram Godse who thought Gandhi was too sympathetic to India’s Muslims.

  15. @imad erecting buddhist statues doesn mean they are buddhists,buddhism is peaceful ,look at its founder buddha and his disciples.if someone really followed in their path,how can they ever commit violence?there is on room in his teachings that remotely

  16. Killing ppl of other faith in offense and defense.@ryan muslim leaders thought on communal lines n carved out pakistan ,n here a hindu leader whose majority following was also hindu lead his followers to always compromise.but some hindus couldn digest he

  17. Continued to favour muslims and make his overwhelmingly hindu followers who readily stood by non violence n humanity due to ideological similarities with their own beliefs.

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