(TibetanReview.net, Sep13, 2017) – The Dalai Lama has invoked the Buddha to call on the majority Buddhists and leaders of Burma to end the tragic plight of the Rohingya Muslims whom the UN says are suffering from “ethnic cleansing”. The exiled spiritual leader of Tibet and the 1989 Nobel Peace laureate has said the plight of this minority group has made him feel “very sad”. He has called on those reportedly harassing the Muslims minority group that they “should remember Buddha”.
Speaking to reporters, the Dalai Lama has said the suffering of Rohingya Muslims fleeing violence in Myanmar would have inspired the Buddha to help. “I think such circumstances Buddha would definitely help to those poor Muslims,” independent.co.uk Sep 11 quoted him as saying.
Recent reports say around 300,000 Rohingya Muslims had fled into Bangladesh following a security clampdown by the Burmese armed forces, prompted by Rohingya militant attacks on military outposts in late August.
The Burmese military’s allegedly overwhelming and indiscriminate response has prompted the UN to brand it as “ethnic cleansing”. Reports speak of people and villages being burned.
The report cited the Dalai Lama as saying he had also delivered this message to Myanmar’s de facto civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi several years ago at a meeting of Nobel Peace Prize laureates. He has also joined a number of other peace icons in calling for an end to the violence.
The Rohingyas number around one million and live mostly in the Rakhine state. They are, however, not recognized as citizens of the country. They were said to live in the country since pre-colonial times, but are often referred to as ‘Bengalis’, alluding to the claim that they are illegal immigrants from Bangladesh.