BWA General Council Resolution 2013.11
The General Council of the Baptist World Alliance meeting in Ocha Rios, Jamaica, July 1-6, 2013:
LAMENTS the atrocities occurring in Rakhine, Chin, Karen and Kachin states in Myanmar;
RECALLS that Baptist missionaries, Adoniram and Ann Judson, arrived on the shores of Myanmar in 1813 and Eugenio Kincaid, the Judsons’ missionary colleague, first addressed the Kachins in 1837;
AFFIRMS Jesus’ teaching that his followers should do to others what we would have them do to us “for this sums up the Law and Prophets” (Matthew 7:12) and the scriptural injunction to love our neighbors as ourselves (See, for example, Galatians 5:14);
NOTES that the Kachin Baptist Convention, founded in 1910, represents the majority of Kachin people living in Myanmar and around the world and is a member of the Myanmar Baptist Convention and the Baptist World Alliance, sharing the Christian commitment to peace and justice;
REGRETS that, in June 2011, a seventeen-year cease-fire between the Myanmar army and the Kachin Independence Army broke down and, although the president of Myanmar ordered the military on December 10, 2011, to stop their offensive, the war in the Kachin State has escalated;
LAMENTS that large numbers of innocent civilians have been killed and many women have been raped as part of a strategy of violence. More than 200 Kachin Baptist villages have been lost and at least sixty six places of worship have been destroyed. The war has forced more than 100,000 civilians to flee their homes and live in camps as Internally Displaced Peoples (IDPs);
SUPPORTS the following public statement issued by the Kachin Baptist Convention on January 30, 2013, calling on all parties involved:
• “To immediately cease military operations at this time when the Myanmar president’s Roadmap to Peace is being implemented, as it is creating mistrust and affecting national unity for the brothers and sisters of all ethnic groups of Myanmar.”
• “To permit fast and effective access to humanitarian assistance by the removal of barriers to the UN agencies and international human rights organizations from reaching areas in need to ensure physical and emotional security of innocent civilians.”
• “To cease all harassment, arbitrary arrest and unlawful detention of civilians under the guise of security and other reason, cease military attacks upon civilians and those in the IDP camps, the burning of houses and villages, and sexual violence against female civilians, and to respect human rights laws.”
• “We do not believe that the use of force to attain peace can achieve sustainable peace. We urge an immediate political dialogue through the setting up of clear policies and procedures in order to secure a truly genuine and just peace;”
CALLS UPON Baptists worldwide:
• to stand with our Kachin Christian brothers and sisters in Myanmar and around the world to find solutions to this conflict and to all situations of ethnic cleansing through the power of prayer and nonviolent peacemaking; and
• to support actions of the United Nations and other nongovernmental organizations to promote relief work, establish justice, and return peace to this land.
BWA General Council Resolution 2013.11 Kachin Crisis
Original Source Bibliography: Callam, Neville, editor. Baptist World Alliance 2013 Yearbook: Minutes of the General Council Meeting and Directory. Falls Church, VA: Baptist World Alliance, 2013.
Original Source Footnote/Endnote: Neville Callam, ed., Baptist World Alliance 2013 Yearbook: Minutes of the General Council Meeting and Directory (Falls Church, VA: Baptist World Alliance, 2013), pp. 145- 146.
Online Document Full Citation: BWA General Council Resolution 2013.11 Kachin Crisis; https://baptistworld.org/resolutions.
In-text Online Document Citation: (BWA General Council Resolution 2013.11).