Monday, September 25, 2017

Anifah to table resolution on Rohingya at the UN General Assembly (Up-dated 2)

Despite non-consensual support of ASEAN, Malaysia has taken the plight of the Rohingya on it's own to the United Nation and getting the support of the Organisation of Islamic Countries, European Union, United States and Russia.

Foreign Minister, Dato Anifah Aman is expected to table a resolution at the United Nation General Assembly at 8 PM New York tonight (around 8 AM Saturday in Malaysia). Yesterday, NST reported:
PUTRAJAYA: Malaysia is expected to highlight the plight of the ethnic minority Rohingya in the Rakhine state at the 72nd Session of the United Nations General Assembly (72nd UNGA).

It will be among the highlights to be brought to the attention by Malaysia's Foreign Minister Datuk Seri Anifah Aman who will deliver Malaysia's National Statement at the UNGA meet.

In a statement today, Wisma Putra said during the assembly in New York from today to Sept 26, Anifah would also highlight the question of Palestine, developments in the Korean Peninsula, elimination of nuclear weapons, Global Movement of Moderates and UN reform initiative.

This action is taken following the frustration with ASEAN. In The Star Online, Anifah expressed frustration with the attitude of the Myanmar government.
Asean is no longer able to handle the issue of the Rohingya persecution in Myanmar, says Foreign Minister Datuk Seri Anifah Aman.

He said Asean had failed to address the issue efficiently so Malaysia will instead continue to raise the issue at the United Nations and Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC).

“Within Asean, I have given up hope. We had seven meetings, and Malaysia expressed our concerns to Myanmar and they (Myanmar) promised to address the concern.

“Until today, nothing has been done. Therefore, Malaysia may raise it at other levels, like the United Nations and OIC,” ...
One argument of one of the member country was to maintain the policy of non-interference.

Howevever, there seemed to be a line demarcating the views of the countries of ASEAN between those with high population of Buddhist being defensive of Myanmar against the Muslim populated members.

The main consideration should be human rights and dignity.

At the second Asean Ministerial Meeting on Radicalisation and Violent Extremism (AMMRVE), Deputy Prime Minister, Dato Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi indirectly took ASEAN to task in his address, which basically said enough is enough.

NST reported:
... Zahid questioned Myanmar's blockade of humanitarian aid by international organisations from being delivered to the Rohingya.

"Myanmar's security forces are killing even women and children without pity.

"These are humans. These people are not animals. We may have our differences, but we have to stand together on humanitarian grounds.

"If you are really a democratic country as you say you are, then you should not stand in the way of humanitarian aid," said Zahid, in the presence of the Myanmar delegation.

Malaysia has adopted a tough stance on the violence inflicted on Myanmar's Rohingya community on the Rakhine State.
IS inflitration

Not only is the concern humanitarian, it is believed that IS terrorist have inflitrated the Rohingya. The Malaysian Insight reported on Anifah's concern:

THE precarious situation of the Rohingya in Rakhine must be addressed urgently before it becomes a fertile breeding ground for extremists, says Foreign Minister Anifah Aman.

Anifah said this fear could manifest as the Islamic State (IS) was seeking to make inroads into Southeast Asia and South Asia, and would have no qualms taking advantage of the crisis.

“Should this happen, Malaysia and neighbouring countries would bear the brunt of serious instability to the region,” he said during the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation Contact Group’s session on the Rohingya Muslim Minority in Myanmar, at the United Nations General Assembly building in New York yesterday.

Anifah reiterated Malaysia’s commitment to extending support and assisting the Myanmar government in addressing the complex challenges in Rakhine, but that the latter must also do its part by curbing military action and allowing unimpeded access for the delivery of humanitarian aid.

“We urge the government of Myanmar to ensure the return of all Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) with safety and dignity to Rakhine State, including the restoration of their status since the revocation of their rights in 1982,” he said.

Anifah said Malaysia also called on Myanmar’s State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi to implement the recommendations of the nine-member Advisory Commission on Rakhine State, which was chaired by former UN secretary-general Kofi Annan.

The findings of the commission stated that the Myanmar government must scrap restrictions on movement and citizenship of the Rohingya to avoid fuelling “extremism”.
Singapore's Channel News Asia reported:

For years, Myanmar’s Rohingya ethnic minority eschewed violence, fleeing to neighbouring Bangladesh and other Southeast Asian countries each time the country’s military threatened them.

That was until October 2016, when a ragtag insurgent group armed with machetes and crude weapons calling themselves Harakah Al-Yaqin (HAY), or Faith Movement, staged two attacks on police posts in Myanmar’s Rakhine state, killing nine policemen and making off with 62 firearms.

“They (Rohingya) had been very, very patient in dealing with a very unjust situation … they had not resorted to arms for a very long time - until October last year,” said political scientist Chandra Muzaffar, president of the Kuala Lumpur-based International Movement for a Just World (JUST).

“Other ethnic minorities like the Karens, Kachins … they resorted to taking up arms against the government a long time ago,” Chandra added.

The Karens have been fighting for an independent state since 1949, while the Kachins have been fighting since 1961. Both groups have signed ceasefires which are regularly broken.

Sometime this year, HAY rebranded itself as the Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (ARSA), led by Attullah Abu Amar Jununi.

On Aug 25, ARSA staged a second and bigger attack targeting 30 police posts in Rakhine, killing 12 members of the security forces. The attack involved about 150 to 200 militants in a pre-dawn raid.

The military responded with a ferocious crackdown, sending 420,000 Rohingyas fleeing to Bangladesh. The violence has resulted in the deaths of 400 people.

Myanmar’s government promptly declared ARSA a terrorist organisation....

The chorus of global outcry can be heard around the world. NST reported:

WORLD leaders have rallied by taking a strong stance against the atrocities committed against Myanmar’s Rohingya Muslim minority group.

Coming on the heels of the issue being raised by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak during his recent meeting with Donald Trump, the United States (US) president has called on the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) to take “strong and swift action” to end violence against the Rohingya.

French President Emmanuel Macron labelled it “genocide” in his condemnation of continued atrocities in Myanmar, while British Prime Minister Theresa May and Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani also joined in the chorus of criticism to put UNSC under increasing pressure to step in and address the genocide against the Rohingya.

Najib had in December last year led a protest in Kuala Lumpur against what he called a “genocide” of Myanmar’s Rohingya. He urged Asian neighbours and the world to step up the pressure to stop the violence.

Kuala Lumpur, he then said, would send a strong message to Aung San Suu Kyi’s government that “enough is enough”.

Speaking at a Security Council meeting in New York on peacekeeping reform, US Vice-President Mike Pence declared the crisis a threat to the world.

Pence accused the Myanmar military of responding to militant attacks on government outposts “with terrible savagery, burning villages, driving the Rohingya from their homes”.

“Unless this violence is stopped, which justice demands, it will only get worse. And, it will sow the seeds of hatred and chaos that may well consume the region for generations to come and threaten the peace of us all,” Pence said.

“President Trump and I also call on the Security Council of the United Nations to take strong and swift action to bring this crisis to an end and bring hope and help to the Rohingya people in their hour of need,” he told the 15-member council.

Pence’s remarks were the strongest US government response yet to the violence in Myanmar’s Rakhine State that began on Aug 25 and forced 420,000 Rohingya into Bangladesh, fleeing a military offensive the UN had branded ethnic cleansing.

The Wisma Putera FB statement is stern and uncompromising:

6.​It is for this reason Malaysia calls upon the Government of Myanmar to stop the military action immediately and allow unimpeded access for the delivery of the humanitarian aid.

7.​We urge the Government of Myanmar to ensure the return of all the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) with safety and dignity to Rakhine State, including the restoration of their status since the revocation of their rights in 1982. Those rights must be addressed without reservation. This is to ensure the Rohingya’s unjustifiable statelessness be reversed.

8.​We also call on State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi (Aung San Su Chi) for the immediate implementation of all the recommendations of the Advisory Commission on Rakhine State that was chaired by Kofi Annan.

9.​Those perpetrators who had committed crimes against humanity must be held accountable and be brought to justice.

10.​We must act now. We must move beyond rhetorics. We must save lives. We must ensure that the ancestor land of the Rohingyas is restored.

 ASEAN may relent to a concerted pressure from the international community. And China, whose concern is with any millitary action near it's border, may have to interfere to avoid an international military action.

Nevertheless, Najib, who initiated the move to save the Rohingya, may have moved away from the non-interference policies of previous two administration. He proved he does not have to be loud and combative but firm through his actions. 

NST reported:
Myanmar Ethnic Rohingya Human Rights Organisation Malaysia has expressed its appreciation to Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak and the Malaysian government for raising its plight on the international stage.

Its president, Zafar Ahmad Abdul Ghani, said as the global community focused on the United Nations’ General Assembly sitting in New York, the organisation hoped that this would translate into the international community “taking action against Myanmar”.

“We appreciate the support to stop the genocide against our people. However, there is a lot more to be done by the international community to stop the atrocities.”

Associate Professor of Politics and International Relations at Universiti Malaysia Sabah Dr Lai Yew Meng said Najib had played a big part in garnering world leaders’ support for the Rohingya.

He said the meeting between Najib and United States President Donald Trump in Washington DC recently had touched on international security and the plight of the Rohingya.

Thus, he said, the call made by the US was a positive step towards finding a solution to the crisis.
Compared to the non-stop tantrum, envy and in-denial of a previous leader coupled with the steadiness in facing the onslaught of criticism, Najib has elevated himself to be a man of a "man of leader" and the former reduced to "a child".

It is only natural as one grew older to slowly revert to the second childhood phase.


Dear All, the Foreign Minister of Malaysia will be presenting Malaysia's statement at the General Assembly, United Nations very shortly after the Foreign Minister of Brunei's statement which is live now.

Catch YB Dato' Sri Anifah Haji Aman, Minister of Foreign Affairs Malaysia shortly live on


Mr. President, Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen,

I congratulate you on your appointment as the President of the Seventy-Second (72nd) Session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA).

I am confident that under your able stewardship, the General Assembly, as the main deliberative and policy-making organ of the United Nations, will see substantial advancement in addressing the many challenges our Organisation faces today.

I also congratulate His Excellency Mr.AntónioGuterres on his appointment as the 9th UN Secretary-General early this year. Your endeavour to make the United Nations an effective, relevant and august Organisation, I assure you, has Malaysia’s fullest support and cooperation.

Mr. President, Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen,

This year’s Seventy-Second (72nd) UNGA theme, ‘Focusing on People: Striving for Peace and a Decent Life for All on a Sustainable Planet’ is most relevant and timely, as we work collectively and individually to achieve all 17 Sustainable Development Goals by 2030. This journey is ‘no mean feat’. Some have even advocated that it should be the only focus for the entire international community to strive towards ensuring our future survival in an inclusive manner. We must strengthen our resolve and fulfill our promise to each and every citizen of the world that ‘no one will be left behind’. On this basis, Malaysia has always oriented its development agenda to accomplish this very promise.

Sustainable development has been at the heart of Malaysia’s development approach since the 1970s. In 2009, the Malaysian Government launched its New Economic Model, which features three new goals: to achieve high income, inclusivity and sustainability. These pursuits continue to resonate well with the three components of the 2030 Agenda, namely economic growth, social needs and environmental protection.

We have also adopted forward-looking development policies through the Eleventh Malaysia Plan, spanning five years from 2016-2020, with the theme ‘Anchoring Growth on People’. This development plan reaffirms the Malaysian Government’s commitment to a vision of growth anchored on the prosperity and wellbeing of its people while protecting the environment and strengthening peace.

In July this year, Malaysia presented its Voluntary National Review (VNR) at the High-Level Political Forum on SDGs. The VNR, which reports the actions and measures taken by Malaysia to advance the implementation of the SDGs, is testimony to Malaysia’s continued commitment to achieve the 2030 Agenda. The Government of Malaysia strives to ensure that each and every Malaysian has an equitable share in the prosperity and wealth of the country, and that no one will be left behind.

Mr. President, Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen,

Earlier this week, Malaysia joined other Member States in signing the Treaty to Prohibit Nuclear Weapons. We are convinced that the political and legal impact of this Treaty will steer the international community collectively towards the elimination of nuclear weapons and the maintenance of a world free of nuclear weapons. We were guided by the commitment of states on an instrument which is legally sound, feasible to implement and one that sends a powerful political message that nuclear weapons are categorically unacceptable.

Malaysia strongly believes in continuing to strengthen and enhance legislative and collective enforcement capabilities in confronting international security threats, in particular the proliferation of Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD) specifically to non-State actors. We remain steadfastly committed to our international obligations in the fields of disarmament and international security through various national, regional and international approaches.

In this regard, Malaysia reiterates its strong condemnation of DPRK’s nuclear tests and missile launches which seriously undermined the global disarmament and non-proliferation regime. Malaysia calls on the DPRK to desist from conducting further nuclear tests and missile launches, to halt its nuclear and ballistic missiles programme, and to comply fully with its international obligations in the interest of the maintenance of international peace and security.  Malaysia joins other nations in stressing the need for the immediate resumption of peaceful dialogue and negotiations among the relevant parties towards finding a durable solution to this longstanding conflict.

We are also seeing a convergence of new security threats emerging from irregular migration and transnational crime activities, which include terrorism, trafficking in persons, illicit drug trafficking, money laundering and cyber-crimes.

The threats we face today have an increasingly regional and international impact, affecting our economies and lives in ways which we have never experienced before. And for these reasons, Malaysia has taken significant efforts to improve our legislations and enforcement capabilities by adopting a holistic approach in preventing and combating these heinous crimes.

Sadly, as we devote our attention to peace, decent life and a sustainable planet, there are people in this world who are suffering from horrifying crimes against humanity.
Over the past few weeks, we have seen the recurrence of violence instigated by a delusional and desperate militant group of Rohingyas in Rakhine State. However, the subsequent ‘clearance operations’ by Myanmar have claimed countless innocent civilian lives and caused more than 400,000 Rohingyas to flee their homes. Indiscriminate violence perpetrated against the Rohingyas during these operations is of grave concern for Malaysia and also to others. Such atrocities have unleashed a full-scale humanitarian crisis that the world simply cannot ignore but must be compelled to act.

If the current situation is not addressed judiciously, the desperate people in Rakhine will become easy prey to recruitment by extremists. Prolonged frustration, anger and deprivation provide fertile breeding ground for it.

Though the Myanmar Government has given its repeated assurances to implement measures to resolve the issue, the recent incidents of violence has not assuage our concerns for effective safeguards to be put in place on the ground.

Therefore, I call upon the Government of Myanmar to end the violence and stop the destructions to life and properties, and allow immediate unimpeded access for the delivery of humanitarian aid.

I would also like to take this opportunity to commend the Bangladesh Government for doing their utmost in receiving almost half a million Rohingya refugees in the past three weeks. Sheltering such a huge number of refugees certainly puts a strain on any country. Malaysia has dispatched humanitarian aid to Bangladesh on 9 September 2017 and will do more.  In the spirit of compassion and humanity, I call on the international community to support the humanitarian efforts in Bangladesh.

Mr. President, Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen,

Our collective failure in finding a solution to the Palestinian question is unacceptable. The situation in Palestine remains daunting and appalling as Israel continues to violate international law with its heavy-handed approach against the defenceless Palestinians.

As Israeli occupation of the Occupied Palestinian Territory marks the 50th year, we must continue to intensify our efforts in finding a just and durable solution to the Palestinian question. Malaysia reiterates that any action by Israel, to impose its laws, jurisdiction and administration on the Holy City of Jerusalem are illegal and totally unacceptable.

We remain extremely concerned over the lack of accountability by the Israeli occupying forces, as well as the ongoing blockade of Gaza and the resulting humanitarian crisis.

We are extremely dismayed with the diminishing prospect of peaceful co-existence as Israel’s illegal settlement activities continue unabated. The implementation of Resolution 2334 adopted by the UN Security Council on 23 December 2016 remains a challenge. In this regard, Malaysia reiterates its support to the work of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People and its pro-active approach to pronounce the need for a written quarterly report of the Secretary-General on the implementation of the said resolution. We urge the international community, especially Member States, to remain firmly principled in supporting this vital call. If, we continue to allow for the resolution to be deliberately weakened in an unashamedly manner and rendering it unimplementable, we would be guilty of deconstructing the two-state solution.

Malaysia will continue to support the works of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA). The plight of some five million registered Palestine refugees must not be ignored. In view of its weakening financial situation, we urge the international community to strengthen its commitment in providing financial assistance and other relevant assistance to UNRWA.

Mr. President, Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen,

In our fight against the scourge of violent extremism, Malaysia would like to reiterate the continued urgency to harness the approach of moderation to negate the propagation of extremism and radicalisation.

To this end, Malaysia restates its call for a Global Movement of Moderates, made by the Honourable Prime Minister NajibRazak in 2010, to douse the flame of hatred and stem the influence of extreme and myopic ideas of intolerance, xenophobia and racial hatred, among others.

It is imperative for communities of different race, religion and culture to band together in seeking common peaceful aspirations and celebrate our diversity rather than be influenced, and enticed into extremist traps.

Malaysia, therefore, looks forward to bringing forth the Global Movement of Moderates initiative to the UN through a Resolution at this Session. It is imperative that the voices of reason, tolerance and understanding drown out the voices which glorify extremism that sow seeds of hatred amongst our communities.

Mr. President, Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen,

In order to successfully perform the arduous tasks at hand, the United Nations cannot afford to stand still and remain idle. Since taking over the helm of the Organisation, the Secretary-General together with the UN Secretariat have initiated various efforts to make the Organisation more efficient, effective, agile and fit-for-purpose.

Malaysia commends the dynamic leadership of the Secretary-General through his various reform initiatives which include the review of the Peace and Security Architecture, enhancing the overall Development System and UN Management Reform, amongst others.

Malaysia is of the view that any major reform initiative that may include cost-cutting measures should not hamper or disrupt the Organisation’s existing development efforts to achieve peace and a decent life for all. This includes development programmes in developing countries especially countries in areas of conflict, peacekeeping operations and peacebuilding.

I wish to extend my delegation’s full cooperation, support and commitment in working closely with you, Mr. Secretary General, all UN Member States and various stakeholders towards implementing the reform initiatives.

Mr. President, Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen,

Let us strengthen our resolve in fulfilling our collective responsibilities.

Allow me to assure you of Malaysia’s continued support and commitment to the agenda of the United Nations and the work of the General Assembly.

I thank you.

The TV coverage delved into the lack of support by ASEAN:


A communique was released by ASEAN Chairman, which is still trusted the Myanmar government to take the remedial action. It was in diplomaticy language, an apparent statement to undermine Anifah's resolution at the UNGA.  The link here.

Anifah responded swiftly to distancced himself from the soft and compromising stance to the Myanmar regime yesterday:


I refer to the ASEAN Chairman’s Statement on the Humanitarian Situation in Rakhine State, which was issued in New York on 23 September 2017.

Malaysia would like to disassociate itself with the Chairman Statement as we are of the view that it is a misrepresentation of the reality of the situation. In this regard, Malaysia has made known its concerns but they were not reflected in the Chairman Statement. Hence, the Chairman Statement was not based on consensus. The statement also omits the Rohingyas as one of the affected communities.

While Malaysia condemns the attacks against Myanmar security forces on 25 August launched by the Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (ARSA), subsequent ‘clearance operations’ efforts by Myanmar authorities was disproportionate that it has led to deaths of many innocent civilians and caused more than 400,000 Rohingyas to be displaced.

Malaysia expressed grave concerns over such atrocities which have unleashed a full-scale humanitarian crisis that the world simply cannot ignore but must be compelled to act on.

Malaysia strongly urge the Government of Myanmar to end the violence, stop the destruction to lives and properties, allow immediate unimpeded access for the delivery of humanitarian aid to the Rohingyas and all affected communities, and to resolve the Rohingya refugee problem. Viable and long-term solutions to the root causes to the conflict must be found in order for the Rohingyas and the affected communities to be able to rebuild their lives. We also urge Myanmar to fulfil its commitment to immediately implement the recommendations of the final report of the Advisory Commission of the Rakhine State.

Malaysia on its part has dispatched humanitarian aid to Bangladesh on 9 September 2017 and will continue to do more.

24 September 2017

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