Should international companies pull investments out of Myanmar?

Foreign firms are under pressure to cut ties with the military following the February 1 coup. Protests against the February 1 military coup in Myanmar are spreading, despite internet shutdowns and threats of arrests. International firms are under growing pressure to cut ties with the army’s vast business empire.

For years, rights groups and the United Nations have revealed extensive corruption by military-controlled firms, with revenues going directly to army generals and their families. So will pulling foreign investment be enough to force the coup leaders to bring back civilian rule?

Presenter: Mohammed Jamjoom

Guests:

Debbie Stothard – Founder and coordinator of ALTSEAN-Burma, a network of ASEAN organisations working to support human rights and democracy in Myanmar

Ronan Lee – Visiting scholar at Queen Mary University of London, author of Myanmar’s Rohingya Genocide

Tharaphi Than – Associate professor at Northern Illinois University

‘A Politician, Not an Icon: Aung San Suu Kyi’s silence on Myanmar’s Muslim Rohingya’

Islam and Christian Muslim RelationsHere is a link to my latest article. Published in the journal Islam and Christian-Muslim Relations: http://www.tandfonline.com/eprint/AIExfyxdwswI6nJRRBAc/full#.U3yq8CyKCP8

ABSTRACT: In Myanmar (also known as Burma), the Rohingya are a persecuted Muslim minority living mainly in northern Rakhine State. Aung San Suu Kyi, the iconic leader of Myanmar’s opposition party the National League for Democracy (NLD), is championed as the voice of the people. However, on the matter of the Rohingya’s persecution she has been notably silent. This article examines the possible reasons for Suu Kyi’s silence and argues that Buddhist–Muslim political relations in Myanmar are central to understanding the reasons behind Suu Kyi’s position on the Rohingya. It is suggested that various factors, including the history of the Rohingya in Myanmar, the NLD’s attitude towards the Rohingya, Suu Kyi’s sense of obligation to her father’s political legacy, and Suu Kyi’s views on ethnicity, are creating a political environment in which Suu Kyi is presented with pragmatic political reasons for staying silent. Given Suu Kyi has the potential to become a future national leader, an understanding of her behaviours towards a sizeable persecuted Muslim minority is important. This is particularly the case when consideration is given to the contemporary pressures on Muslims to embrace radical politics and the implications this could have for Myanmar and the region.