• Wednesday, Sep 22, 2021
  • Last Update : 11:37 am

UN expert: Myanmar military perpetrating possible war crimes in Rakhine

  • Published at 09:18 pm April 29th, 2020
Myanmar-Shan state-Myanmar army-Rebel
File photo: Myanmar soldiers walking along the Pyidaungsu highway road outside Kutkai in Shan State on August 25, 2019 AFP

Lee calls for investigation into allegations

Possible war crimes and crimes against humanity are taking place in Rakhine and Chin states of Myanmar, said a United Nations expert calling for an investigation into the allegations.

“While the world is occupied with the Covid-19 pandemic, the Myanmar military continues to escalate its assault in Rakhine State, targeting the civilian population,” said Yanghee Lee, the outgoing UN Special Rapporteur on human rights in Myanmar, on Wednesday.

“Calls for a ceasefire, including by the Arakan Army, have gone unheeded. Instead, the Tatmadaw (Myanmar military) is inflicting immense suffering on the ethnic communities in Rakhine and Chin,” she said.

“The Tatmadaw is systematically violating the most fundamental principles of international humanitarian law and human rights. Its conduct against the civilian population of Rakhine and Chin States may amount to war crimes and crimes against humanity. All parties to the conflict, including the Arakan Army, must also protect civilians.”

The expert noted that accountability was critical to ending the conflict and said, “Having faced no accountability, the Tatmadaw continues to operate with impunity. For decades, its tactics have intentionally maximised civilian suffering; we all know what they did to the Rohingya in 2017. They are now targeting all civilians in the conflict area, with people from Rakhine, Rohingya, Mro, Daignet and Chin communities being killed in recent months.”

“Their alleged crimes must be investigated in accordance with international standards, with perpetrators being held accountable,” she said.

An armed conflict has raged in Rakhine and Chin States since December 2018 between the Myanmar military, known as the Tatmadaw, and the Arakan Army. But in recent weeks the Tatmadaw has ramped up attacks against civilians. More than 157,000 people have been displaced, and hundreds, including women and children, killed and wounded since the conflict started.

The Arakan Army has also carried out hostilities in a manner that has had negative impacts on civilians, including kidnapping local officials and parliamentarians. Most recently, on 12 April, the Arakan Army is reported to have abducted an elected member of a Paletwa Township committee. However, it has declared a unilateral ceasefire, which has the effect of increasing civilian protection. The focus of all authorities, including security forces, should be on dealing with the COVID-19 crisis.

The special rapporteur said recent Tatmadaw air and artillery strikes in civilian areas in Rakhine and neighbouring Chin State have killed and injured scores of adults and children, and the Tatmadaw has prevented some of the injured from accessing urgent medical care. Men suspected of links to the Arakan Army have been detained for days and tortured. Schools, houses and a Buddhist temple have been burned or destroyed, even an entire village of up to 700 homes.


51
Facebook 51
blogger sharing button blogger
buffer sharing button buffer
diaspora sharing button diaspora
digg sharing button digg
douban sharing button douban
email sharing button email
evernote sharing button evernote
flipboard sharing button flipboard
pocket sharing button getpocket
github sharing button github
gmail sharing button gmail
googlebookmarks sharing button googlebookmarks
hackernews sharing button hackernews
instapaper sharing button instapaper
line sharing button line
linkedin sharing button linkedin
livejournal sharing button livejournal
mailru sharing button mailru
medium sharing button medium
meneame sharing button meneame
messenger sharing button messenger
odnoklassniki sharing button odnoklassniki
pinterest sharing button pinterest
print sharing button print
qzone sharing button qzone
reddit sharing button reddit
refind sharing button refind
renren sharing button renren
skype sharing button skype
snapchat sharing button snapchat
surfingbird sharing button surfingbird
telegram sharing button telegram
tumblr sharing button tumblr
twitter sharing button twitter
vk sharing button vk
wechat sharing button wechat
weibo sharing button weibo
whatsapp sharing button whatsapp
wordpress sharing button wordpress
xing sharing button xing
yahoomail sharing button yahoomail