Updated: 04/18/2014 09:53 | By Agence France-Presse

US urges Myanmar to ease tensions

The US ambassador to the UN urged Myanmar on Thursday to intervene to stop communal violence there and protect humanitarian workers in the volatile western state of Rakhine.


US urges Myanmar to ease tensions

A Myanmar policeman patrols past a Muslim-owned shop in the village of Theechaung on the outskirts of Sittwe in the western state of Rakhine on April 1, 2014 - by Soe Than Win

Myanmar, formerly called Burma, has been shaken by religious unrest in recent years with at least 250 people killed in Buddhist-Muslim clashes since 2012.

Violence forced humanitarian workers to flee Rakhine earlier this month, leaving thousands facing looming food and water shortages.

"We continue to support Burma’s reforms, but are greatly concerned that without effective government intervention violence in Rakhine could worsen, lives will be lost, and the critically needed humanitarian presence will not be sustainable," Samantha Power said.

"The government must take urgent steps to avoid more violence and to prevent setbacks on the journey to democracy and prosperity."

She spoke after the UN special adviser on Myanmar, Vijay Nambiar, updated the UN Security Council on the situation in the country's west.

The departure of humanitarian workers has aggravated the already critical health situation for hundreds of thousands of Rohingya Muslims dependent on international medical assistance, including 140,000 displaced people living in camps and more than 700,000 living in isolated villages.

Myanmar has promised to protect international aid groups targeted by Buddhist mobs, after a chorus of concern from foreign governments and the United Nations.

Latest Photo Galleries on xinmsn

NEWS VIDEOS

MORE NEWS VIDEOS

facebook recommendations

LIVE NEWS RADIO STREAMING

  • 938 Live

    938LIVE is Singapore's only English news and talk station which transmits round the clock with an engaging and enticing spread of programmes on current affairs, health, business and lifestyle as well as news every half hour until midnight.

  • Capital 958


    95.8FM城市频道的前身是"第三广播网"。上个世纪30年代末,新加坡就有中文广播,一路走来经过不少政治,社会局势的改变,中文广播在本地一直扮演举足轻重的角色。