Sunday, August 20, 2017

Rakhine State to intensify security in Maungdaw

The government will increase deployment of security forces and will issue National Verification Cards in Maungdaw, Buthidaung and Yathetaung townships, as part of stepped up measures to curb violence in these areas, the Rakhine State government said in a statement on Tuesday.

The intensified security measures was in response to the recent violence that occurred in the area on August 3 when seven people were killed and one remained missing and feared dead.

Starting on August 5, security police outposts were set up, the statement said.

The services of international organizations will also be reviewed by the Coordination Committee, the statement added.

The State government issued the statement following a three-point request by the Sayadaws, political parties and the residents on August 6. One of the requests was the increase of security forces.

Sayadaw Ashin Aryawantha, from Shwe Zaydi monastery of Sittwe, who was present at the meeting, said that violent acts can be prevented with added security forces, and that he welcomed the government’s statement.

He expressed hope that the state government statement would be implemented in earnest.

“For the matter that the State government would be encouraged to carry out national verification in accordance with the 1982 law, I want more and rigorous inspections to be done.” said the Sayadaw.

The points that were covered by the State government’s statement were good and detailed, but these must be implemented soon, said U Oo Than Naing, State MP from Yethetaung township.

“Even if the statement is released, but if no action is carried out then there will be no effect.” He said.

People fleeing the acts of violence had set up temporary camps at Zaythipyin village of Yethetaung city.

The state government statement urged those who fled to go back to their homes as more security would be deployed in these areas.

Daw Htu May, Amyotha Hluttaw MP from constituency no 11, added that, “We need to think whether the government’s actions reflected with the public. People fleeing will not be able to read this statement easily. That’s why they can only go home if their safety can actually be assured.”

She said the government’s responsibility is not just about issuing statements but, more important, is for the people to feel they are safe in their homes and can go on with their daily lives without fear.