MPs urge Malaysia to protect Burmese nationals

MPs urge Malaysia to protect Burmese nationals

The Burmese parliament’s upper house has finished compiling a report on the targeted attacks and killings of Burmese migrant workers in Malaysia, and said it is planning to send the report to the Malaysian parliament.

The report, which urges the Malaysian government to curb the violence and protect Burmese nationals, was presented to MPs in Burma’s upper house on Tuesday—the day after a report in the Straits Times said that another Burmese national was found dead in Malaysia.

The Straits Times report quoted a police chief from Penang, who said that local police officers had found a 34 year-old Burmese construction worker with his throat slit on a palm oil plantation.

During a parliamentary session in September, MP Khin Maung Latt from Arakan State put forward a question to the upper house seeking to know what action Burma’s parliament should take to address violence against Burmese nationals in Malaysia.

In response, the upper house decided to look into the issue. After the resulting report was presented to parliament on Tuesday, upper house speaker Khin Aung Myint told MPs that it will be translated into English and sent to Malaysia’s parliamentary speaker.

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Khin Aung Myint also said that if Malaysia doesn’t respond, Burma’s parliament will raise the issue again during ASEAN’s Inter-Parliamentary Assembly.

In 2013, Malaysian police detained more than 900 Burmese nationals in a security sweep after at least two Burmese individuals were killed in the country. Many believe that attacks against Burmese migrants in Malaysia are a response to the “inter-communal” violence between Buddhists and Muslims that has occurred intermittently in Burma since 2011.

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