Najib fulfills promise, Trump wants violence against Rohingya to stop

Najib fulfills promise, Trump wants violence against Rohingya to stop
Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak delivering his speech during the US-Asean Business Council and the US Chamber of Commerce Gala Dinner at St Regis, Sept 13, 2017. --fotoBERNAMA
WASHINGTON DC: United States has agreed to issue a stern statement on the violence against the Rohingya in Myanmar after being given a true picture of the situation by Malaysia.

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said he succeeded in heightening US President Donald Trump's awareness on the Rohingya crisis.

"When I explained to Trump on what happened and its implications, he instructed for a strong statement to be issued so that the violence against the Rohingya is stopped," Najib told Malaysian journalists at the end of his three- day working visit here on Wednesday.

According to him, Trump has also instructed his officers to study the form of humanitarian aid that could be channeled to the victims of the violence.
The prime minister said the US might not have acted as such without Malaysia bringing the issue to Trump's attention in his meeting with the US leader at the White House on Tuesday.

"Before this, I did not think such a statement would be issued without input from Malaysia. I raised it as I had promised to the people of Malaysia," said Najib.

Before leaving for the US, the prime minister had promised to raise the issue of oppression of Rohingya Muslims with the leader of the super power.

After the meeting between the two leaders at the White House, Washington and Kuala Lumpur issued a joint-statement calling for violence against the Rohingya to stop.

More than 379,000 Rohingya Muslims were reported to have fled from the Rakhine state in Myanmar to Bangladesh since Aug 25.

Najib said Malaysia would continue to channel humanitarian aid and used its influence via bodies like the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) and the United Nations to champion the plight of the Rohingya.

On Asean cooperation on the issue, Najib said it was a humanitarian one whereby cooperation had always been a principle strongly held by the regional grouping.

"What is happening is totally unacceptable. We are not interfering in the affairs of other countries, but (the crisis) impinges the image and security of other ASEAN nations. Therefore, we are obliged to give our opinion," Najib said.