PETALING JAYA: The Malaysian Islamic Organisations Consultative Council (Mapim) has urged Putrajaya to investigate those who have been instigating hate against Rohingya refugees.
Mapim president Mohd Azmi Abdul Hamid said the government needs to curb the hate campaign against the community before the situation worsens.
He said some parties could be taking advantage of the issue to justify ending Malaysia’s sympathising with the community. Azmi said action was needed against the spread of hate speech through social media.
“The person who started this campaign, whether from inside the country or abroad, must be swiftly identified and action taken,” he said in a statement today.
He dismissed allegations that Malaysia was the only country accepting the refugees. Azmi said Thailand, Indonesia, Bangladesh, Pakistan, India and Saudi Arabia had also accepted Rohingya refugees, according to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).
He also said Rohingyas had started coming to Malaysia since 1982 when they were declared stateless by the Myanmar junta.
“Between 1982 and now, why didn’t Malaysians raise questions about their presence? Malaysians had even shown deep sympathy for them,” he added.
Azmi’s comments come in the wake of a flood of hateful remarks on Facebook and Twitter against the Rohingya following a purported demand that the Rohingya be granted citizenship.
The fake news, attributed to Zafar Ahmad Abdul Ghani, who heads the Myanmar Ethnic Rohingya Human Rights Organisation Malaysia (Merhrom), came in the wake of reports that Malaysian authorities had blocked a boat carrying starving Rohingya refugees from landing.
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