A court in Burma found two Muslim women guilty of setting off a recent outbreak of sectarian violence, which seems a tiny bit suspect given that it’s usually Muslims who are the victims of sectarian violence in Burma.
Myint Thein of the pro-government National Unity Party, who attended their trial, said Wednesday that the two women in the central township of Okkan were convicted of “insulting religion.” Both were sentenced to two years in prison with hard labor.
Sigh. Has it all, doesn’t it. Minority religion. Women. “Insulting religion.” Two years. Hard labor.
Although the vast majority of victims of the Buddhist-Muslim violence in the past year have been Muslims, most of those convicted of serious offenses in the unrest have been Muslims. Rights groups have argued that Myanmar’s courts are biased in favor of the Buddhist majority. The two women’s trial was related to an April 30 episode in Okkan that culminated with Buddhist mobs destroying shops and homes in several villages. Myint Thein said the court heard that one of the women bumped into the monk as he was collecting alms and the other grabbed the monk by his shoulders. It is considered inappropriate in Buddhism for women to have any physical contact with monks.
So inappropriate that it merits two years in prison with hard labor.
Humans. So good at getting it wrong.