Burmese police taking sides, abusing powers: UN

Burmese police taking sides, abusing powers: UN

Burmese police taking sides, abusing powers: UN

Updated 15 June 2012, 12:01 AEST

The United Nation's Special Rapporteur for Human Rights in Burma, Tomas Quintana says he has received information that police forces are not following orders, in the conflict zone in Arakan state.

Human rights groups say the Burmese authorities are doing little to quell the sectarian violence that's gripped the country's West.

At least 29 people have been killed and more than 30,000 displaced by clashes between Buddhists and ethnic Rohingya Muslims.

The clashes began when a Buddhist woman was allegedly raped and killed by three Muslim men.

Mr Quintana told Radio Australia members of the police force may be abusing their powers.

"What I have received is that the police may be taking some sides in this conflict," he said.

"That's not the way that the police has to be acting to solve and to restore order.

"Another thing that concerns me in Myanmar is that the state of emergency established and ordered by the president is not maintained permanently."

Mr Quintana has called members of the Burmese parliament to find a resolution to the sectarian violence in Arakan state also known as Rakhine state.

He says the issue of ethnic and religious violence in Western Burma is a national one.

"The problem of the Rohingya is not a problem in Rakhine state," he said.

"It's a national problem that involves all people of Myanmar."

Earlier Burmese opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi said a ceasefire agreement to end the sectarian violence was not enough.

Speaking from Geneva, Ms Suu Kyi said a political settlement is needed to achieve lasting and meaningful peace.