Myanmar Says It’s A False Allegation
The Myanmar government has rejected the recent UN report accusing Myanmar’s army of committing genocide against the Rohingya minorities.
The UN report outlined what they said was conclusive evidence the country’s military, known as Tatmadaw committed atrocities that “undoubtedly amount to the gravest crimes under international law.”
However, these reports have been denied by the Myanmar authorities describing them as “false allegations.”
On Wednesday, Myanmar spokesperson Zaw Htay denied those accusations and claimed instead that the country observes a “zero tolerance for human rights violations.”
“Our stance is clear and I want to say sharply that we don’t accept any resolutions conducted by the Human Rights Council,” he said, as quoted in Myanmar state media.
The Rohingya is an ethnic group that has faced persecution, discrimination and violence in Burma.
The Damning UN Report
The report, released Monday by a U.N. Fact-Finding Mission revealed the grave mass extermination and killings of Rohingya in Rakhine, Kachin and Shan state, perpetrated allegedly by the country’s military.
Evidence was gathered by UN investigators through interviews of 875 witnesses. They found that the military were “killing indiscriminately, gang-raping women, assaulting children and burning entire villages” in Rakhine, home to the Muslim Rohingya, and in Shan and Kachin.
In addition, they found that the Tatmadaw also carried out murders, imprisonments, enforced disappearances, torture, rapes and used sexual slavery and other forms of sexual violence, persecution and enslavement. All of these are considered crimes against humanity.
The campaign of violence against the Rohingya began a year ago. An estimated 25,000 people have been killed and 700,000 have fled over the border to Bangladesh.
The violence in Myanmar in September 2017 caused displacement of thousands of Rohingya, forcing them to evacuate to Bangladesh. The violence that erupted in Myanmar last year has also resulted in the death of at least 6,700 Rohingya.
Myanmar’s government blamed Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (ARSA), an insurgent group in the Rohingya-majority areas in the South Asian nation, for coordinated violent attacks against its security posts, triggering retaliation from the government.
The violence escalated as more than 2,600 houses were burned down, causing Rohinga to leave their homes and seek refuge in the neighboring country.
The United Nations condemned the ongoing violence against the Rohingya inside Myanmar, described by Human Rights Chief Zeid Raad al-Huseein as “textbook ethnic cleansing.”
However, Myanmar has repeatedly denied claims it is working deliberately to wipe out the Rohingya, saying they are carrying out counter attacks against “brutal acts of terrorism.”
Who Are The Rohingya?
The Rohingya are the Muslim minority in Myanmar. They are regarded as illegal immigrants. The previous US administration called them one of the most persecuted minorities in the world.
Some Rohingya have been denied citizenship, making them stateless. For many decades, they have been persecuted and discriminated against.
Myanmar is a dominantly Buddhist nation of 60 million people and Northern Rakhine is home to 80 percent of the country’s 1 million outcast Muslim Rohingya population.