June 18, 2018

Evidence of Rohingya massacre in Myanmar

10 February 2018, 12:26 | Winifred Adams

Rohingya women walking inside the"widow's camp at the Balukhali refugee camp in Bangladesh Credit MUNIR UZ ZAMAN AFP

Rohingya women walking inside the

The report quotes a retired Myanmar Army soldier who claims he helped dig a mass grave for 10 Rohingya Muslims who were killed by Buddhist villagers and soldiers in Inn Din. Soon afterwards, all 10 lay dead.

The Rohingya Muslims, who have been loathed by Myanmar's Buddhist majority for decades, are locked down in their villages, sometimes even in their homes and prevented from farming, fishing, foraging, trade and work, aid group says.

Meanwhile, Britain, France, the USA and five other countries asked the U.N. Security Council on Wednesday to discuss the fate of hundreds of thousands of Rohingya refugees driven from Myanmar, diplomats said, according to AFP.The council will hold a meeting next Tuesday to hear U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi's report on the crisis sparked by an army crackdown in Myanmar's Rakhine state in August.

Released by Reuters news agency as part of an ongoing investigation, the photographs show 10 men tied together in a line, facing the camera.

While the Buddhist majority controls the country's military and security and is far better equipped than the minority Muslims, Rohingya are subject to persecution. The account marks the first time soldiers and paramilitary police have been implicated in violence against the Rohingya by testimony from security personnel themselves, Reuters said.

If there was "strong and reliable primary evidence" of abuses, the government would investigate, he said.

That possibility has prompted the government of Myanmar to take precautionary steps to be more on guard against the militant threat. British Labour Party lawmaker Rosena Allin-Khan told BBC's Newsnight that the Reuters report was consistent with accounts she had heard while working as a doctor at Rohingya refugee camps in Bangladesh previous year.

Many days still see scores of people crossing the border.

Rohingya Muslim refugee Mohammad Younus 25 from the Burmese village of Gu Dar Pyin stands on a hill of Kutupalong refugee camp Bangladesh

"We've been bystanders to a genocide", she said.

Myanmar's planned participation in the Cobra Gold exercise, which starts February 13, comes as its security forces are accused of killing hundreds if not thousands of civilians and burning down villages after Rohingya militant attacks last summer.

Campaign group Fortify Rights also called for an independent investigation.

Simon Lewis and Matthew Larotonda have more.

Adler has said public pressure on the Myanmar government was needed to ensure the two journalists were spared a long prison sentence.

Zaw Htay defended the military operation launched in Rakhine last August after coordinated attacks by Islamic insurgents on security posts.

Yanghee Lee, the United Nations human rights investigator for Myanmar who has been barred from visiting the Rohingya areas, echoed that call and added in a tweet: "Independent & credible investigation needed to get to the bottom of the Inn Din massacre".

While working on the story, two Reuters journalists were arrested by Myanmarese authorities and accused of violating the Official Secrets Act.

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