Aye Thein puts Myanmar’s 'Buddhist Extremism' in an International Context

Aye Thein has written an article (1 September) for Tea Circle Oxford, a blog hosted by the Programme on Modern Burmese Studies at St Antony’s College, on the international aspect of ‘Buddhist Extremism’ that often gets overlooked.

Aye writes, “Criticism against Myanmar is justified and must be sustained as long as its human rights record remains as abysmal as it currently is. […] However, progress on this front in Myanmar will be more or less conditioned by progress in the rest of the world. International factors such as rising anti-Muslim populism in the West and prevailing human rights norms in the Islamic World will have an influence on the attitudes of the Burmese, including Buddhist nationalists’ attitudes towards Muslims.”

He goes on to add, “Things are not all bad though. The permissive space in which the Buddhist nationalists operate is always in flux and recent actions by the NLD government and civil society groups show that the excesses of these groups are not unchallenged. Anti-Islamic sentiments in the country are not set in stone, and we should avoid essentializing them as such.”

The full article can be read here: