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Rights group accuses Myanmar of crimes against humanity


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Rights group accuses Myanmar of crimes against humanity

By Shoon Naing

 

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A Rohingya refugee carries her child in a refugee camp in Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh. REUTERS/Cathal McNaughton

     

    YANGON (Reuters) - Myanmar is committing crimes against humanity in its campaign against Muslim insurgents in Rakhine state, Human Rights Watch said on Tuesday, and it called for the U.N. Security Council to impose sanctions and an arms embargo.

     

    A government spokesman rejected the accusation, saying there was no evidence and the government was committed to protecting rights.

     

    Myanmar has also rejected U.N. accusations that its forces are engaged in ethnic cleansing against Rohingya Muslims in response to coordinated attacks by Rohingya insurgents on the security forces on Aug. 25.

     

    It says its forces are fighting terrorists responsible for attacking the police and the army, killing civilians and torching villages.

     

    The military campaign has sent nearly 440,000 refugees fleeing to Bangladesh, most of them Rohingya. They have accused the security forces and Buddhist vigilantes of trying to drive Rohingya out of Buddhist-majority Myanmar.

     

    "The Burmese military is brutally expelling the Rohingya from northern Rakhine State," said James Ross, legal and policy director at Human Rights Watch.

     

    "The massacres of villagers and mass arson driving people from their homes are all crimes against humanity," he said.

     

    The International Criminal Court defines crimes against humanity as acts including murder, torture, rape and deportation "when committed as part of a widespread or systematic attack directed against any civilian population, with knowledge of the attack".

     

    Human Rights Watch said its research, supported by analysis of satellite imagery, had found crimes of deportation and forced population transfers, murder and attempted murder, rape and other sexual assault and persecution.

     

    The U.N. Security Council and concerned countries should impose targeted sanctions and an arms embargo, the group said.

     

    Government spokesman Zaw Htay rejected the accusation, saying no Myanmar government was ever as committed to the promotion of rights as much as the current one.

     

    "Accusations without any strong evidence are dangerous. It makes it difficult for the government to handle things," he told Reuters.

     

    LITTLE SYMPATHY

     

    The violence in Rakhine State and the refugee exodus represent the biggest crisis the government of Nobel laureate Aung San Suu Kyi has faced since it came to power last year in a transition from nearly 50 years of harsh military rule.

     

    Myanmar regards the Rohingya as illegal immigrants from Bangladesh and communal violence has flared periodically for decades. Most Rohingya are stateless.

     

    For years, the United States and its Western allies imposed sanctions on Myanmar in support of Suu Kyi's campaign for democracy. Its response was to forge closer ties with China.

     

    The United States has criticised the military campaign as "disproportionate" and called for an end to violence but a Trump administration official said this month he did not expect a return to sanctions.

     

    Suu Kyi has faced unprecedented criticism and calls for her Nobel prize to be withdrawn. She has denounced rights violations and vowed that abusers would be prosecuted.

     

    Suu Kyi has little if any control over the security forces under a military-drafted constitution that also bars her from the presidency and gives the military veto power over political reform.

     

    Myanmar has seen a surge of Buddhist nationalism over recent years, and the public is supportive of the campaign against insurgents blamed for starting the violence. There is little sympathy for the refugees.

     

    Since Sunday, the army has unearthed the bodies of 45 members of Myanmar's small Hindu community who authorities say were killed by the insurgents soon after the violence erupted.

     

    The Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army insurgent group, which has claimed attacks on the security forces since October, denied killing the villagers.

     

    Rights groups have said they have found evidence of abuses by the insurgents, including the burning of some Buddhists' homes, but on a much smaller scale than abuses by the army and Buddhist vigilantes.

     

    Some Hindus have fled to Bangladesh, complaining of violence against them by soldiers or Buddhist vigilantes. Others have taken refuge in Myanmar towns, accusing the insurgents of attacking them on suspicion of being government spies.

     

    (Writing by Robert Birsel; Editing by Michael Perry and Paul Tait)

     
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    -- © Copyright Reuters 2017-09-26
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    The discovery of mass graves filled with the bodies of Hindus in the Rakhine area would suggest that these muslims have been carrying out their own little ethnic cleansing on the side, and this whole conflict was started by the muslims attacking a dozen police stations, killing many Burmese ! Yet they seem to have complete control of the media in their own defence !! It would appear that NO muslim country wants them, but the solution is simple. The Indonesian government has this thing called "transmigrasi", where they ship people into the jungle in what used to be called Irian Jaya, even building them houses to live in, so that they can even further their claims of invasion of New Guinea. What better idea than to ship all these unwanted troublemakers to some muslim country where they would actually be useful :)

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    3 hours ago, phantomfiddler said:

    The discovery of mass graves filled with the bodies of Hindus in the Rakhine area would suggest that these muslims have been carrying out their own little ethnic cleansing on the side, and this whole conflict was started by the muslims attacking a dozen police stations, killing many Burmese ! Yet they seem to have complete control of the media in their own defence !! It would appear that NO muslim country wants them, but the solution is simple. The Indonesian government has this thing called "transmigrasi", where they ship people into the jungle in what used to be called Irian Jaya, even building them houses to live in, so that they can even further their claims of invasion of New Guinea. What better idea than to ship all these unwanted troublemakers to some muslim country where they would actually be useful :)

    In fact the Indonesian government has always exported Java muslims to all non muslim Islands.

    Bali, West Guinea, the Moluccan are but a few examples.

    And the world keeps silent.

    West Guinea is a prime example of the idiot anti colonial ideas, in others of course, of the UN and the US.

    New Guinea, as it was called before the Indonesian invasion of 1962, has no connection with Indonesia, at all.

    To come back to the muslim controlled UN and media, of course that is the way the islam operates.

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    "It says its forces are fighting terrorists responsible for attacking the police and the army, killing civilians and torching villages." (Quote from the story above).

    Slowly the truth is starting to surface, and where was the UN when this was going on previously....Nowhere to be found.

    Has the UN ever made figures public of how many of the Myanmar People have been slaughtered....NO!

     

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