UN envoy visits northern Rakhine

Rakhine State Chief Minister U Nyi Pu, centre, in saffron jacket, and UN Under Secretary-General for Political Affairs Jeffrey Feltman, centre left, meet with villagers. Photo: MNA
Rakhine State Chief Minister U Nyi Pu, centre, in saffron jacket, and UN Under Secretary-General for Political Affairs Jeffrey Feltman, centre left, meet with villagers. Photo: MNA

Villagers from conflict areas in northern Rakhine State voiced their concerns for security, resettlement and job opportunities at a meeting with a UN delegation yesterday.
The UN delegation led by Mr. Jeffrey Feltman, Under Secretary-General for Political Affairs of the United Nations, toured villages in Yathedaung and Maungtaw townships yesterday to listen to the voices of communities who endured the terrorist attacks in August and their current challenges.
The delegation, accompanied by Chief Minister of Rakhine State U Nyi Pu, visited the Islamic village of Anaukpyin in Yathedaung Township, Maungtaw Township’s Ngakhuya Village, where Rakhine ethnic people, Hindus and Islamic villagers are living in harmony and the village of Shwe Yin Aye (Na-ta-la).
At the meeting with villagers, Mr. Jeffrey Feltman explained to villagers about his mission, calling on the villagers to disclose their suffering, worries and current challenges due to the deadly terrorist attacks.
Muslims from Anaukpyin Village expressed their needs for education and health care, security for travelling and communications, agricultural machinery for farming, road infrastructures, rebuilding of houses destroyed in the terrorist attacks, TVs, job opportunities and negotiations for peaceful coexistence
with ethnics from neighbouring villages.
At the meeting with the UN delegation, Rakhine ethnic villagers, Hindus and Muslims from Ngakhuya Village expressed their concerns among the different communities, and their requirements for jobs and national security.
Villagers from Shweyinaye Village (Na-ta-la) shared what they experienced on 25 August, the day of the terrorist attacks, and their current challenges for their livelihoods and security.
Following the visit to villages, the UN delegation met with Sayadaw Bhaddanta Panna Jota and Sayadaws of Alotawpyae Monastery in Sittway, who carried out rescue and relief works soon after the terrorist attacks occurred.
During the visit, they sought advice from the Sayadaws for stability, peaceful co-existence and eradication of anxieties of the different communities and regional development.
Before returning to Yangon, the delegation met with religious leaders at Thakkepyin Village.
The delegation also held talks with representatives of Rakhine State government in Sittway before their visit to villages yesterday, discussing how to supply humanitarian aid effectively, repatriation of refugees, resettlement and rehabilitation, regional development and ridding the state of conflict.—GNLM

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