Duterte: Why are rights advocates silent on plight of Rohingya Muslims?
DAVAO CITY – President Rodrigo Duterte on Saturday took a swipe anew at human rights advocates for heavily criticizing him while allegedly not hitting Burmese democracy icon Aung San Suu Kyi for the killings in Myanmar’s Rakhine state.
Speaking at the closing ceremony of the 26th Mindanao Business Conference (Minbizcom) in Cagayan de Oro City, Duterte said there was an uproar against the killings in the Philippines but the same was not being felt in the case of Myanmar.
“Iyang human rights na ano, with all the hullabaloo,” Duterte said. “Look at what’s happening in Burma. She [Aung San Suu Kyi) is a Nobel prize winner.”
Duterte said the Rohingya Muslims were “being brutalized” and the news about it was all over.
“Look at the TV, on Al Jazeera,” he said.
UN Special rapporteur for Myanmar, Yanghee Lee, said on Friday that at least 1,000 people had been killed since Aug. 25, when clashes between government forces and Rohingya militants erupted. But the Burmese government said the figure was only 421.
The UN High Commissioner for Refugees said at least 270,000 Rohingya Muslims had fled the region as the violence had targeted them.
Images of Rohingya civilians being brutally killed had also been flashed in major television networks, eliciting anger across the world.
The Rohingyas were considered by Myanmar as citizens of Bangladesh. But Dhaka had rejected that idea, saying they were Burmese.
Subscribe to our global nation newsletter
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.