Narinjara news



ARGUMENT OVER THE ARREST OF A UNHCR EMPLOYEE
IN SOUTH WESTERN MYANMAR

Maungdaw, 6
th February 02: There has been an argument between a UNHCR officer and a Nasaka immigration and security forces major on the arrest of a local Muslim UNHCR employee without any information either to the UNHCR office or to the arrested person's family in the border town at the south-western state of Myanmar, creating a lot of speculations among the local residents as well as the international NGOs working in the area, our correspondent quoted an unnamed source within the local Nasaka forces.
On 22nd January this year, the Co-ordinator of UNHCR in the northern part of Maungdaw Mr Narasima Rao and interpreter U Kyaw Tint
went to Nasaka Area No. 2 headquarter, Aung-ju village, and met a Major Naing Lin, the commander-in-charge of Nasaka Area 2 for the second time after their earlier visit on 18th January.
On asking the major about Jafar Alam, a UNHCR local employee from Khamaung-seik village, the major replied that, though Jafar Alam had a legal wife, he allured and enticed an unmarried girl, making her pregnant, a serious charge according to the existing law of Myanmar. The major added that, on the charges brought so against him by the relevant village chief (Yayaka uggata) Jafar Alam was held 'legally' by the Nasaka authority. The UNHCR officer demanded that, Jafar Alam was a decent gentleman, honest and active UNHCR local employee, widely esteemed by the people in the area. He also added that, he (Mr Rao) had reasons to believe that, Jafar Alam was arrested because he was suspected by the Nasaka of providing information to the UNHCR, and that, the character of the girl as mentioned by the major was questionable according to the local people who told him on enquiry.
Mr Rao also hoped that, the case of Jafar Alam be given proper hearing and investigation, and justice should be meted out to him, or else, the international community may bring to question the legality of the legal system prevalent under the State Peace and Development Council junta in Myanmar.
Jafar Alam is now kept under custody in the police lock-up room in Maungdaw, the border town of Rakhaing state. The Nasaka Area 2 has ever since been conducting what they described as 'investigation' on the case of Jafar Alam, it was learnt. #
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