Saturday May 18, 2013
Update from the New 'Killing field' in Burma: 12 Masjids Burned & 4 Islamic Teachers KilledSalem-News.com
State of emergency imposed in Meiktila.
(NEW YORK) - At least 12 mosques have been burned, and extremist Buddhist mobs are still hunting Muslims in the central Burmese town of Meiktila. One report says that 28 students and 4 Islamic teachers were killed in one of the Islamic schools in the town, in the presence of police forces. The list of the dead included Hafiz Mohammad Ahtisham, Mawlana Mohammad Shafi, Mawlana Zakariya and Mufti Wajib.
A BBC reporter said that he saw the bodies of 20 Muslim men, which Buddhists were trying to burn and destroy. At least 20 have been reported dead, although that number is likely much higher, as information is very tightly controlled in Burma.
Following three days of devastation and attacks against Muslims, Burma has finally declared a state of emergency. At least 30 percent of the town’s inhabitants are Muslims. Five to 10 percent of the Muslim population in Meiktila is Gujurati Muslim, owners of businesses in the town. Those businesses have been burned down.
Most of those unarmed Muslims are now locked down in their neighborhoods or in hiding.
Meiktila is a military garrison, but the military was not called in until Friday to control the violence. How did the military stand by and allow this to happen in a country that is ruled by the military?
The attacks are also disturbing because the Muslims affected are not the Rohingya. The Rohingya have long been denied citizenship in their ancestral land. The Muslims in Meiktila are Burmese. The Muslims have citizenship in the country. But, the attacks on the Rohingya in the past year have caused tensions between Buddhists and Muslims in the rest of the country.
Reuters is reporting that Muslims in Meiktila were already on edge because rumors have been circulating that anti-Islam monks were going to target the town.
Call the Secretary of State’s office at (202) 647-5291, then press Option #1 and then Option #8.
Call the White House at (202) 456-1111.
If you’re interested in requesting pamphlets to put up in your local masjid or community center, send an email to email@example.com. We have already sent out a number of pamphlets to communities that have requested them. The pamphlet includes information on what is going on in Burma, what the Burma Task Force is doing and action you can take, such as signing petitions and making phone calls to ambassadors.
BURMA TASK FORCE COALITION PARTNERS
Muslim Ummah of North America
Muslim Leadership Council of New York
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