Syrian Islamists set sight on Myanmar
Buddhists attack Muslims in Myanmar. (YouTube)
Syrian Islamist have been attempting to smuggle Muslim extremists into Myanmar, a Syrian Islamist source told NOW.
According to the source, “many attempts have been made to send Jihadists to Myanmar for the sake of our brothers.”
“Contacts with Islamist groups in Pakistan, India and other surrounding countries are being made in order to facilitate their entry into Myanmar.”
The source, however, added that “these attempts have failed.”
Speaking to NOW, Salafist Sheikh Bilal al-Masri called on Muslims to attack Buddhists and their interests.
“I decree that every person who can get to a Buddhist should kill him because they are killing our people and the Muslims cannot be blamed for their reaction.”
The Sheikh went on to say that there was “a systematic war” against Muslims in Mali, Iraq, Palestine and Myanmar.
“All this can trigger extremism, and then they will say that we are the terrorists,” the sheikh added.
Extremist groups have emerged in Syria after more than two years of violence between President Bashar al-Assad’s regime loyalists and rebels.
Al-Nusra Front emerged as one of the prominent organizations involved in Syria’s conflict, which erupted in March 2011.
Soaring Buddhist-Muslim tensions have cast a shadow over political reforms in Myanmar, where the end of decades of authoritarian military rule has laid bare deep sectarian fault lines.
Myanmar’s former military rulers employed Buddhist nationalism to help prop up their government, which ruled over the Rohingya ethnic group that practices Sunni Islam.
Deadly communal unrest erupted in central Myanmar last month, the worst since violence between Buddhists and Rohingya in the western state of Rakhine last year left scores dead and tens of thousands – mainly Muslims – displaced.
Rohingya have been fleeing the violence in Myanmar in the thousands and are described by the UN as one of the most persecuted minorities in the world.
This article is a translation of the original Arabic