Selasa, Mei 20, 2014
Current Developments in Myanmar
I had a chance to meet and discuss with a Senior Advisor for Burma Judith Cefkin on Burma’s overall reform efforts, the situation in Rakhine State and Meikhtila, progress on the peace process, solutions for curbing ethnic and sectarian conflict, as well as for combating human trafficking, and support for Burma’s ongoing effort to advance democracy, justice and accountability, and respect for human rights.
The issue of the most persecuted ethnic Rohingya became central to the discussion. The role of civil societies like us is vital in reducing the pain endured by Rohingya. From the discussion which was held in Global Movement of Moderate (GMM) involving several Ngos like Mercy, Viva Pelestina and MRA, I suggested to enhance the dialogue between Muslim and Buddhist since the whole picture of the conflict happened in Myanmar involved religious hatred. Based on the discussion new solution emerged such as having vocational training in Malaysia by offering and sponsoring both young Muslim and Buddhist in Rakhine state for 6 month. They will not only learn about vocational skill but at the same time to learn the success story of managing peace in Malaysia.
Ms. Cefkin is a career member of the Senior Foreign Service, rank of Minister Counselor. Prior to assuming her duties as Senior Burma Advisor she served as Deputy Chief of Mission (DCM) at the U.S. Embassy in Bangkok, Thailand from 2010 to 2013. This was Ms. Cefkin’s second tour in Bangkok. She served there previously as the Ambassador’s Staff Assistant and as a Political Officer from 1990 to 1993.
Since entering the Foreign Service in 1983, Ms. Cefkin has also had overseas postings as Vice Consul in Mexico City, Political Officer at the U.S. Embassy in Paris, where she headed the Political Internal Unit, and as Political Counselor at the U.S. Embassy in Manila. She also served as Deputy Chief of Mission at the U.S. Embassy in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina.
In Washington, Ms. Cefkin served as Desk Officer for Rwanda, Burundi, and the Central African Republic, followed by a tour in the Political-Military Bureau's Office of Security Assistance and Sales. Subsequent Washington assignments included a tour in State's Office of European Union and Regional Affairs, a tour as Deputy Director of the Office of Western European Affairs, and a an assignment as Director of the Office of Nordic and Baltic Affairs, where she was charged with managing relations with Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Finland, Iceland, Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia. Ms. Cefkin also served as an examiner on the Foreign Service Board of Examiners.
Prior to entering the Foreign Service, Ms. Cefkin worked as a television news producer at network news affiliates in Denver and Houston. She also worked in Congress's Office of Technology Assessment and as a legislative intern in the U.S. Senate. She received a B.A. in Government from Smith College (1975), followed by a Masters in International Relations from the London School of Economics and Political Science (1977).