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Are you sure it's safe to go to Burma? Myanmar's 2017 Conflict Handbook
We are a Burmese (Myanmar) based tour operator and keep up to date with the latest news, FCO tourist consulting and the experience of our local partner. Whilst it is certain to be visiting the state of Rakhine, there has been extensive coverage this weekend of the distressed state, which raises issues about the ethical implications of traveling to Burma today.
Recently, reporting has concentrated primarily on the continuing conflicts between the Rohingya and Rakhinepeans. Rohingya are Muslims who emigrated to Burma from Bangladesh in the fifteenth century, and the Rakhine are Buddhists who are against the Rohingya who live in Burma.
Rohingya are described as the most trafficked persons in the hemisphere; they are often regarded as migrants. Burma's regime is refusing to give them nationality - they were stripped of their right to stand for election in 1982, and their provisional IDs ( "white cards") were cancelled in 2015 before they had the chance to elect.
Protests last months floundered when it was announced that Rohingya militants were targeting law enforcement post. As a reaction to this, it appears that safety guards and Buddha militias have attacked towns and slaughtered Rohingyaivilians. This was followed by a massive emigration (well over 300,000) from Rohingya to Bangladesh. They are not recognized as Burmese or Bangladeshi nationals and are virtually Stateless.
The first Burmese political figure to raise awareness of the emergency by giving the UN entry to the UN and instructing former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan to prepare a progress review and find concrete resolutions to the war. A fortnight ago he proposed the Rohingya's nationalities.
Aung San Suu Kyi has been criticized since the recent violent eruptions for not strongly denouncing the Rakhine fighters - especially in the West, where the Rohingya tribe is largely sympathetic. Your previous statements concerned the protection of everyone in the state of Rakhine from terrorism. Are you sure it's safe to go to Burma?
Myanmar is almost twice as big as Germany, and this dispute is insulated for the state of Rakhine in areas that are taboo for visitors. None of the disputes have affected the tourist industry and the Ngapali beaches in the state of Rakhine are still intact. Can it be ethically justified to go to Burma?
It is our firm belief that sustainable Burmese travel is good for the people.