a space to talk about faith, church, god, society, our journey and all that real stuff that matters in a post modern world … or just the ramblings of a bald post modern pilgrim! I must stress the postings on this site are my own and don't necessarily represent the views of the Diocese of Chelmsford, the Bishop of Chelmsford, the parish of St Barnabas Little Ilford, the Church of England or anywhere I may happen to be working. These views are personal!
Min Aung Hlaing, the head of the Burmese military, is responsible for the deaths of thousands of Rohingya villagers, and the rape of thousands of Rohingya women. The United Nations has said what his military has done could be genocide, the most serious crime in the world.
In Kachin State and Shan State his soldiers are also attacking civilians, driving thousands of people from their homes, arresting, torturing and executing villagers.
Despite these horrific violations of international law, the British government is refusing to support the UN Security Council referring Burma to the International Criminal Court. A referral to this court means that they can investigate the crimes that have taken place and seek to prosecute those responsible.
Min Aung Hlaing and his military are terrified of this happening. British MPs who have called on the British government to support a referral have been banned from visiting Burma.
So far Min Aung Hlaing has paid no price for what he has done to the Rohingya. Thinking he can get away with anything, he has been stepping up attacks against other ethnic minorities in Burma.
Getting the UN Security Council to refer Burma to the International Criminal Court won’t be easy. China and Russia will be opposed. The only way to overcome that opposition is to build global support for a referral. The British government should be working to build that global support. Instead, on this issue, the British government has the same position as China and Russia, they don’t support a referral.
Britain is the formal lead country on Burma at the UN Security Council. Others follow their lead. By refusing to support a referral, they are protecting Min Aung Hlaing, encouraging him to believe he can continue to get away with the mass rape and killing of ethnic minorities.
If you live in the UK, please email your MP asking them to support Early Day Motion 1219, calling on the British government to support referring Burma to the International Criminal Court. (An Early Day Motion is a kind of petition that only MPs can sign, and we know from experience they can influence the government).