Proposes OIC panel to press Myanmar to stop violence against the minority community. PHOTO: AFP

Proposes OIC panel to press Myanmar to stop violence against the minority community. PHOTO: AFP

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan has proposed establishment of a high-powered committee, comprising foreign ministers of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) member countries, to press Myanmar to stop systematic violence against its battered minority – Rohingya Muslims.

Members of the committee, to be established by the OIC Secretary General Iyad Ameed Madani, will travel to Myanmar with a view to pressing upon the government to restore fundamental rights of Rohingyas, who have been facing severe persecution and violence, said an official statement.

As a key member of the OIC, Pakistan is going to write to United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon as well as the United Nations Security Council president to ask them for further intensification of diplomatic and moral pressure on Myanmar to grant citizenship rights to Rohingyas in accordance with international humanitarian laws.

This was one of the many recommendations of a three-member cabinet committee that Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif approved on Tuesday.

The committee – headed by Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan and comprising the PM’s Adviser on Foreign Affairs and National Security Sartaj Aziz and the PM’s Special Assistant on Foreign Affairs Tariq Fatemi – was formed by the PM last week to deliberate on the issue of Rohingya Muslims.

The committee has also decided that a special grant of US$ 05 million should be announced as Pakistan’s contribution towards plight of Rohingyas. This grant will be channeled in the form of food through the World Food Programme for distribution in Rohingyas’ camps in Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand.

It was also decided to sensitise the international community for greater assistance in all forms to the helpless Rohingya Muslims who are neither accepted by Myanmar nor by the neighbouring countries.

Published in The Express Tribune, June 10th, 2015.