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Hundreds gather for Burma protest
8:52pm Monday 13th August 2012 in News
Hundreds of people gathered in Bradford’s Centenary Square last night for a peaceful protest to highlight the plight of civilians dying in Burma.
Residents gathered close to the steps of Bradford and Keighley Magistrates’ Court to hear community leaders speak at the rally, which was organised to highlight mounting violence and atrocities facing Burma’s minority Rohingya community.
Many protesters carried banners and placards condemning the crisis, where people are being driven away from their homes across the sea to Bangladesh.
Respect party leader Salma Yaqoob told the rally: “We are here today because we care about what goes on in Burma. People from all parties and all faiths are here to say we will not be silent and we will not look the other way.”
Leader of Bradford Council David Green (Lab, Wibsey ) said the rally would “send out a message that the people of Bradford have not forgotten the plight of the people being persecuted in Burma”.
“I pledge that this Council will continue its work to support oppressed communities and work with all of you here and raise this up the agenda,” he added.
Other speakers included a group of Rohingya people who moved to Bradford in 2009 and Liberal Democrat Bradford East MP David Ward, who told the crowds he had contacted the Foreign Office to call for action.
Bradford West MP George Galloway , of Respect, said he was “proud” of the rally, which involved representatives from Basic Human Rights, and vowed to repeat it in Manchester on Wednesday.