Sun Nov 19 2017, 4:00:48 +03

UN investigators confirm "methodical" killings, rape of Rohingya

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(Dhaka-AlummahWorld-Safar 8, 1439H)Rohingya refugees fleeing Myanmar have testified that a "consistent, methodical pattern" of killings, torture, rape and arson is taking place, United Nations human rights investigators said on Friday after a first mission to Bangladesh.

The fact-finding team, led by former Indonesian attorney general Marzuki Darusman, said the death toll from the Myanmar army's crackdown following Rohingya insurgent attacks on Aug. 25 was unknown, but "may turn out to be extremely high."

"We have heard many accounts from people from many different villages across northern Rakhine state. They point to a consistent, methodical pattern of actions resulting in gross human rights violations affecting hundreds of thousands of people," Darusman said in a statement.

After a visit to a Rohingya refugee camp in Bangladesh, three United Nations human rights investigators said on Friday that they were "deeply disturbed" by reports of mass atrocities by Myanmar security forces.

The investigators, appointed last March as part of a fact-finding mission to examine alleged abuses, said that the accounts were among the worst that they had ever heard from conflict zones around the world.

More than 600,000 Rohingya have fled northern Rakhine state for Bangladesh since violence broke out on August 25.
"We are deeply disturbed at the end of this visit," Marzuki Darusman said in the statement.
Another expert, Radhika Coomaraswamy, said that the accounts of sexual violence "are some of the most horrendous I have heard in my long experience." Myanmar, which denies any atrocities and says that it has been fighting Rohingya militants who staged attacks on dozens of police posts across northern Rakhine state on August 25, has not yet approved access for the fact-finding mission.
The UN said that government claims regarding the militants could only be established "when the government presents the information that has led it to draw this conclusion."

The third team member, Christopher Sidoti, said that Rohingyas must be allowed to return to Rakhine if they wish, but only after mechanisms are put in place to ensure their safety.

"That may require the placement of international human rights monitors in Rakhine State," he said.

On the other hand, the United Nations investigator of human rights abuses in Myanmar expressed deep disappointment Thursday at what she described as an indifferent response by the country’s Nobel laureate leader to the violence raging against the Rohingya Muslim minority.

The comments by the investigator, Yanghee Lee of South Korea, a leading child rights expert appointed to her United Nations human rights post in 2014, underscored international frustrations over the behavior of the Myanmar leader, Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, regarding the persecution of the Rohingya.

Ms. Aung San Suu Kyi, a hero of democratic rights who endured years of house arrest by Myanmar’s military to become the top civilian politician of her country and de facto head of the government, has not criticized the deadly campaign against the Rohingya, who are wildely reviled among the country’s Buddhist majority.

The campaign, carried out by Myanmar’s armed forces and allied militias, has uprooted hundreds of thousands of Rohingya from their villages in the western border state of Rakhine since August. The fallout has created a refugee and public health crisis in Myanmar’s impoverished neighbor, Bangladesh, as more than 600,000 people have fled across the border.

Other top United Nations officials have called the anti-Rohingya purge a campaign of ethnic cleansing or worse.  

Despite confirmed reports of killings, burning of villages, rapes and severe torture by the Myanmar`s forces and Buddhism follower in Rakhine, UN, United States and European Union failed to put any workable pressure on Myanmar`s government of disgraced de-facto leader Aung San Suu kyi to stop killings and deliberately forced displacement of Rohingya Muslims from Rakhaine.