Amnesty condemns escalating militarisation in Myanmar's Rakhine

Amnesty condemns escalating militarisation in Myanmar's Rakhine

Amnesty condemns escalating militarisation in Myanmar's Rakhine

Rights groups and the United Nations charge that about 700,000 Rohingya Muslims who fled to Bangladesh were forced out by a scorched earth campaign by Burmese security forces that began last August after a Rohingya insurgent group carried out attacks on about 30 security outposts and other targets.

While admitting the images paint a partial picture, Amnesty's report, Remaking Rakhine State, suggests that at least three new bases are being built in the area.

Amnesty said Myanmar's "reshaping" of the region where the Rohingya lived appeared to be created to accommodate more security forces and non-Rohingya villagers, and could deter refugees from agreeing to return.

Almost 700,000 Rohingya Muslims, a minority ethnic group on Buddhist majority Myanmar, fled the clampdown launched in August in response to attacks by suspected Muslim insurgents on a number of security posts in Myanmar's northern Rakhine state. "New bases are being erected to house the very same security forces that have committed crimes against humanity against Rohingya". "Not only are their homes gone, but the new construction is entrenching the already dehumanizing discrimination they have faced in Myanmar".

At least four mosques that had not been wrecked by fire have been destroyed, or had their roofing or other materials removed, since late December, a time when significant conflict was not reported in the area, Amnesty said.

"The bulldosing of entire villages is incredibly worrying". This raises serious concerns that the authorities are destroying evidence of crimes against the Rohingya, which could hinder future investigations. "Myanmar's authorities are erasing evidence of crimes against humanity, making any future attempts to hold those responsible to account extremely hard", Hassan said. "There are only police posts for regional security and law enforcement reasons".

Amnesty condemns escalating militarisation in Myanmar's Rakhine

In the once mixed ethnicity village of Inn Din - where Amnesty International has documented how security forces and their proxies killed Rohingya villagers and torched their homes in late August and early September 2017 - satellite imagery shows what appears to be a new security force base being built where the Rohingya part of the village used to be.

Nearly six months after launching the military operation, Myanmar's military has admitted to only killing 10 captured Rohingya men, who, it claims, were "terrorists".

A man walks past the entrance of a camp set up by Myanmar's Social Welfare, Relief and Resettlement Minister to prepare for the repatriation of displaced Rohingyas, who fled to Bangladesh, outside Maungdaw in the state of Rakhine, Myanmar January 24, 2018.

Myanmar has denied all accusations and reports alleging the ethnic cleansing of Rohingya.

Dhaka - Dhaka has sought New Delhi's support for safe and respectful return of hundreds of thousands of Rohingya refugees who fled a violent military crackdown in Myanmar, a common neighbour to both Bangladesh and India, an official said on Sunday.

Latest News