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Burma: Rohingya

Question for Department for International Development

UIN HL4774, tabled on 18 January 2017

To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the open letter from a number of Nobel Peace Prize Laureates in December 2016 calling for the UN to encourage the government of Burma to lift all restrictions on humanitarian aid for the Rohingya people; and whether they will take action to support that end.

Answered on

30 January 2017

We noted the open letter from a number of Nobel Peace Prize Laureates in December 2016, and share the concern over access for humanitarian assistance. DFID and Foreign Office officials have been in close contact with UN agencies monitoring humanitarian access.

The UK Government has repeatedly urged the Government of Burma to allow full unrestricted humanitarian access. The Secretary of State for Foreign & Commonwealth Affairs Boris Johnson MP, the Minister of State Rory Stewart MP, the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State Alok Sharma MP and the Minister of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs Baroness Anelay have all raised the issue personally with Burmese ministers in recent meetings in Burma or London. DFID and Foreign Office officials have visited Northern Rakhine together with international counterparts and lobbied Burmese Ministers on this issue. The UK also discussed the issue at the UN Security Council on 17 November, where we raised our concerns about the lack of humanitarian access. The Government of Burma has committed to restoring humanitarian access and we are pressing for, and stand ready to support, the delivery of this commitment.