Reconstructing Judaism and the Reconstructionist Rabbinical Association have joined with 18 organizations, representing the Jewish Rohingya Justice Network, in calling on Under Secretary of the Treasury Sigal Mandelker to pursue justice and accountability for the Rohingya people and all ethnic minorities in Burma. Rori Kramer, Director of Government Affairs for American Jewish World Service (AJWS), the leading global Jewish human rights organization, issued the following statement on the Network’s behalf:
“On August 25, the world will mark two years since the Burmese military escalated a genocidal campaign against the Rohingya people. Because of this state-sanctioned violence, more than 700,000 Rohingya people have fled their homes and live in impoverished conditions in refugee camps in Bangladesh. The military is also the key perpetrator of human rights violations against other ethnic and religious minority groups in Burma (also known as Myanmar).
“The Jewish community has come together to urge Under Secretary Mandelker, as the lead for international sanctions, to designate the most senior Burmese military officials, who were the key architects of the gross violations of human rights against the Rohingya people. It is also crucial to impose financial sanctions on military-owned enterprises since the income generated from these businesses enables the military to continue its brutal acts of gross human rights violations in Burma.
“As Jews, we cannot stay silent in face of genocide, and we are grateful that Under Secretary Mandelker shares our commitment to pursuing justice. We know the cost of silence and we will continue to advocate on behalf of the Rohingya and ethnic minorities in Burma until the military ceases its operations of violence and persecution.”
The full text of the letter delivered to the U.S. Treasury Under Secretary and signatory list are available above as a PDF.