Ortho­dox lead­ers urge probe into Is­raeli arms for Myan­mar

Tehran Times - - INTERNATIONAL -

A group of prom­i­nent Ortho­dox lead­ers has asked the Knes­set (uni­cam­eral na­tional leg­is­la­ture of Is­rael/ Is­raeli Par­lia­ment) to in­ves­ti­gate re­ports that Myan­mar is us­ing weapons sold by Is­rael to com­mit atroc­i­ties against Ro­hingya Mus­lims.

A dozen Ortho­dox rab­bis submitted a let­ter to law­maker Avi Dichter who chairs a Knes­set com­mit­tee tasked with over­see­ing Is­rael’s arms ex­ports, Ha’aretz re­ported on Mon­day.

“Has Is­rael sold arms to Myan­mar in re­cent years, as al­leged in sev­eral for­eign re­ports, and con­tin­ued to do so even af­ter the pub­li­ca­tion of sev­eral re­ports on se­vere hu­man rights vi­o­la­tions in the coun­try?” they asked. “If so, why was there no veto is­sued on the ex­ports?” read the let­ter.

The let­ter re­port­edly con­tained re­ports and tes­ti­monies show­ing that Is­rael had sold weapons to Myan­mar.

“And is Is­rael still sell­ing arms to Myan­mar?” it con­tin­ued, and fur­ther asked if Tel Aviv had ac­tu­ally stopped the weapons’ sales, why it had not pub­li­cized it.

The United Na­tions has ac­cused the Myan­mar govern­ment of con­duct­ing sys­tem­atic “eth­nic cleans­ing” against the Ro­hingya Mus­lims.

On Sun­day, a UN spe­cial en­voy said Myan­mar sol­diers “sys­tem­at­i­cally tar­geted” Ro­hingya women for gang-rape dur­ing vi­o­lence against the mi­nor­ity Mus­lim com­mu­nity which trig­gered an ex­o­dus to Bangladesh.

Pramila Pat­ten, a spe­cial rep­re­sen­ta­tive of the UN Sec­re­tary-Gen­eral on sex­ual vi­o­lence in con­flict, said many of the atroc­i­ties “”ould be crimes against hu­man­ity.”

“I heard hor­rific sto­ries of rape and gang-rape, with many of the women and girls who died as a re­sult of the rape,” Pat­ten told re­porters in the Bangladeshi cap­i­tal of Dhaka.

Is­rael was one of the few par­ties sell­ing weapons to South Africa dur­ing apartheid and only stopped sell­ing weapons to Rwanda dur­ing the geno­cide there af­ter the UN Se­cu­rity Coun­cil passed a res­o­lu­tion that put an arms em­bargo on the coun­try.

Last month, Haaretz said Is­rael had not said that it would stop sell­ing weapons to the mil­i­tary junta in Myan­mar, de­spite UN data on mas­sacres the coun­try’s mil­i­tary had per­pe­trated against the Ro­hingya mi­nor­ity.

The pa­per sep­a­rately said Is­rael sold ad­vanced weapons to Myan­mar dur­ing an “eth­nic-cleans­ing cam­paign” go­ing against the Ro­hingya and that the Myan­mar naval com­man­der had vis­ited Is­rael in the past year, his sec­ond in the past five years.

“There’s a re­mote weapon sta­tion, made by El­bit Sys­tems, which al­lows the fir­ing of a heavy ma­chine gun or can­non of up to 30 mil­lime­ters,” it said.

Last month, 55 Is­raeli rab­bis rep­re­sent­ing var­i­ous denom­i­na­tions signed a pe­ti­tion call­ing on Is­raeli au­thor­i­ties to end arm sales to Myan­mar but Tel Aviv has kept mum on its mil­i­tary deal­ings with the regime.

More than 350 rab­bis from the United States sub­se­quently signed a sim­i­lar let­ter, which also called on the U.S. govern­ment to end train­ing Myan­mar troops.

Myan­mar’s vis­it­ing mil­i­tary Chief of Staff Min Aung Hlaing (R) meets Is­raeli Pres­i­dent Reu­ven Rivlin.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Iran

© PressReader. All rights reserved.