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Showing posts with label World News. Show all posts
Showing posts with label World News. Show all posts

16 March, 2018

UN suspects Myanmar is guilty of genocide

UN Human Rights Commissioner believes case against military perpetrators should be referred to International Criminal Court
 MARCH 14, 2018 3:56 PM (UTC+8)
Rohingya refugees react as aid is distributed in Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh, September 21, 2017. Photo: Reuters/Cathal McNaughton
Rohingya refugees react as aid is distributed in Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh, September 21, 2017. Photo: Reuters/Cathal McNaughton
When asked queried about Thaung Tun’s remarks, Zeid said undiplomatically that Myanmar authorities were “serial deniers of the truth” and “to suggest that nothing serious has happened in Rakhine, I mean it’s preposterous, ridiculous. How can they say such a thing?”
Thaung Tun countered that the Rohingya fled largely because the ARSA armed group had sowed fear and loathing in their communities, accusing the insurgents of forcing villagers to join their attacks on the security forces and implementing a scorched earth policy of burning villages while in retreat.
Independent security analysts estimate the newly formed armed group has around 3,000-4,000 members, though that figure could by now be higher after a vigorous recruiting drive amid the deprivation and desperation in Bangladesh’s refugee camps.
However, Thaung Tun implausibly told the BBC in a recent interview that ARSA could have anywhere between 10,000 to 20,000 members and that with sympathizers and family members the number could be as high as 200,000.
Whatever the figure, pressure is rising on Myanmar’s government to acknowledge the scale of the violence and accept accountability for the crimes. Officials have claimed any abuses were isolated incidents of wayward security forces, including the killings associated with a mass grave discovered at Rakhine state’s Inn Din village.
Ten Rohingya Muslim men with their hands bound kneel in Inn Din village September 1, 2017. Handout via REUTERS
On March 12, the UN Fact-Finding Mission (FFM) on Myanmar called directly on Myanmar authorities to stop dismissing reports of serious security forces perpetrated human rights violations committed not only Rakhine but also in conflict-ridden Kachin and Shan states.
“The body of information and materials we are collecting is concrete and overwhelming,” the three top experts on the FMM said in their interim oral report to this week’s 37th Session of the UN Human Rights Council. “It points at human rights violations of the most serious kind, in all likelihood amounting to crimes under international law.”
Still, the task of bringing the perpetrators to justice – in this instance the Myanmar military and its top commanders, including Commander-in-Chief Senior General Min Aung Hlaing – will not be easy due to the geopolitics of the United Nations Security Council, where Myanmar allies China and Russia can veto any proposal to impose sanctions.
But the noose is nonetheless tightening on Myanmar’s government and military as the UN says the violence in Rakhine state likely constituted acts of genocide, a characterization that will cause many Western nations that recently dropped their previous sanctions against Myanmar’s chronic abuses to consider their re-imposition.
http://www.atimes.com/article/un-suspects-myanmar-guilty-genocide//
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13 March, 2018

ICC refferal: Need of the hour

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ရိုဟင္ဂ်ာ ဂ်ိနိုဆိုက္နွင့္ပတ္သက္၍  အိုင္စီစီမွ အခ်ိန္အပိုင္းအၿခားတခု အတြက္ ေစာင့္ဆိုင္းလ်က္ရွိ။(ေဆာင္းပါး ရွင္ မွာ   CB Abrar သည္ ဒကၠားတကၠသိုလ္ နိုင္ငံတကာ ဆက္ ဆံေရး ဘာသာရပ္ကို သင္ၾကားေပးေနသူတဦးၿဖစ္ၿပီး၊ မၾကာေသး မီက ဂ်ာမဏီနို္င္ငံ ဘာလင္ၿမိဳ့တြင္က်င္းပၿပဳလုပ္ေသာ ဘာလင္ကြန္ဖရင့္ (27-02-2018) တြင္ အကဲၿဖတ္ဂ်ဴရီအၿဖစ္ေဆာင္ရြက္ခဲ့သူတဦးၿဖစ္ သည္။)
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10 March, 2018

လူမ်ဳိးတုန္းအေထာက္အထားေတာင္းဆုိ

( မတ္ – ၀၉၊ ၂၀၁၈ ) လူမ်ိဳးသုတ္သင္မွဳ႔ သို႔မဟုတ္ လူမ်ိဳးတုန္းသတ္ျဖတ္မွဳ႔ စြပ္စြဲခ်က္မ်ားႏွင့္ပတ္သက္၍ ထင္ရွားေသာ သက္ေသျပခ်က္ရွိလွ်င္ ၾကည့္ရွဳ႔လိုသည္ဟု ျမန္မာေျပာဆို ၊ ကုလသမဂၢ လူ႔အခြင့္အေရး ေကာင္စီတြင္ ျမန္မာနိဳင္ငံအေပၚ စြပ္စြဲခ်က္မ်ားအား တုန္႔ျပန္ေခ်ပ
– ဆြစ္ဇာလန္နိဳင္ငံ ဂ်ီနီဗာတြင္ က်င္းပလွ်က္ရွိေသာ ကုလသမဂၢ လူ႔အခြင့္အေရးေကာင္စီ၏ အဂၤါေန႔ အစည္းအေ၀း၌ ျမန္မာနိဳင္ငံ ရခိုင္ျပည္နယ္ရွိ မြတ္စလင္မ်ိဳးႏြယ္စုတို႔အေပၚ လူမ်ိဳးသုတ္သင္မွဳ႔ သို႔မဟုတ္ လူမ်ိဳးတုန္း သတ္ျဖတ္မွဳ႔ က်ဴးလြန္ေၾကာင္း စြပ္စြဲခ်က္မ်ားႏွင့္ ပတ္သက္၍ ထင္ရွားေသာ အေထာက္အထား သက္ေသျပခ်က္ရွိလွ်င္ ၾကည့္ရွဳ႔လိုေၾကာင္း ျမန္မာလံုျခံဳေရးအမ်ိဳးသားလံုျခံဳေရးအၾကံေပး ဦးေသာင္းထြန္းက ေျပာၾကား သည္ဟု Reuters က ယေန႔ေရးသားသည္။
ျမန္မာနိဳင္ငံအတြင္း လူမ်ိဳးသုတ္သင္မွဳ႔ သို႔မဟုတ္ လူမ်ိဳးတုန္းသတ္ျဖတ္မွဳ႔စြပ္စြဲခ်က္မ်ားစြာကို ကၽြန္ဳပ္တို႔ အျမဲတန္းၾကားသိေနရေၾကာင္း ၊ ကၽြန္ဳပ္တို႔အေနနွင့္ ယခင္ကလည္းေျပာဆိုခဲ့ဘူးျပီး ယခုလည္း ထပ္မံေျပာ ဆိုလိုသည္မွာ ျမန္မာနိဳင္ငံအစိုးရ၏ ေပၚလစီတစ္ရပ္ မဟုတ္သည္ကို အခိုင္အမာေျပာၾကားလိုေၾကာင္း၊ မည္သို႔ပင္ စြပ္စြဲၾကေသာ္ျငားလည္း ကၽြန္ဳပ္တို႔အေနျဖင့္ ထင္ရွားေသာ သက္ေသျပခ်က္ ရရွိလိုသည္ဟု ဦးေသာင္းထြန္းက ဆက္လက္ ေျပာဆိုသည္။
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TOP NEWSMARCH 9, 2018 / 12:17 AM / UPDATED AN HOUR AGO
Myanmar says it would like to see ‘clear evidence’ of genocide
Reuters Staff

GENEVA (Reuters) – Myanmar would like to see clear evidence to support accusations that ethnic cleansing or genocide has taken place against its Muslim minority in Rakhine state, National Security Adviser Thaung Tun told reporters in Geneva on Thursday.
“We have often heard many accusations that there is ethnic cleansing or even genocide in Myanmar. And I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – it is not the policy of the government, and this we can assure you. Although there are accusations, we would like to have clear evidence,” he said.
Reporting by Tom Miles; Editing by Kevin Liffey
Htay Oung
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28 February, 2018

We will appeal to countries to bring Burma to the ICC’

  February 28, 2018
‘We will appeal to countries to bring Burma to the ICC’Mairead Maguire Tarek Mahmud/Dhaka TribuneIn an exclusive interview with the Dhaka Tribune’s Tarek Mahmud, Nobel Laureate Mairead Maguire, renowned peace activist from Northern Ireland and delegate of Nobel Women Initiative, discusses why the Rohingya crisis must be resolved immediatelyHow has your experience been visiting the Rohingya camps?I feel very sad to hear the stories of the Rohingya women and men, who have been tortured, raped, murdered, their villages burned down by the Burmese military. These are acts of genocide. They were attacked by the Burmese military [who aimed] to destroy a culture, a people. We were told that there were no such people as the Rohingya people. And yet, we come here and we see here in Bangladesh, in refugee camps, [nearly] one million Rohingya people. We went up to the no man’s land and we looked across at 2,000 or more Rohingya people sitting in the no man’s land.
So, the Rohingya people have a long history here [in the region]. We believe that denying people’s identity and their citizenship, murdering and killing them, silencing them… is indeed genocidal. We want to bring the Burmese government and military to the International Criminal Court (ICC) to make them responsible for what’s happening.
Your fellow Nobel laureate, Myanmar State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi, has been heavily criticized for her role in the crisis. How far do you think she is responsible?Our sister laureate Aung San Suu Kyi has a moral obligation to all people of Burma [Myanmar]. We ask her to speak out and stop the violence being propagated by the Burmese military. We feel that if Aung San Suu Kyi does not speak out to support her people – the Rohingya people – then she should resign. Because we can’t allow this situation of war where leaders in the Burmese government are allowing murder by the Burmese military.
In what ways are the women more vulnerable during conflicts like these?The Rohingya women, as well as the children, are the worst victims of the genocide. We have spoken with several Rohingya women at the camps and the no man’s land. They described how they were tortured, how they were raped. This is not a new thing. I remember coming to the [Myanmar] border 17/18 years ago, with Bishop [Desmond] Tutu, and we travelled up to the refugee camps on the Burmese border. We spoke to the Christian community there – the Karen people – where many women told us how they had been raped by the Burmese military, how their homes had been destroyed, how they were treated as human porters to walk through lands which had land mines. They had nothing. That was way back then. There’s a long history of Burmese military’s abuse of human rights. We must not allow this to continue.
What can be done to help Rohingya women – who have been victims of sexual violence – and the huge number of orphaned children to secure their future?Whenever you have a situation like this, where over a million refugees from Burma [Myanmar] have come into Bangladesh, we are faced with enormous problems. The Bangladeshi prime minister has reacted to this in a magnificent way by welcoming the refugees, and the people of Bangladesh have also welcomed them. We visited the refugee relief and repatriation commissioner; we were very grateful to hear how they [the refugees] had been housed and sheltered… it’s amazing what the humanitarian groups have done here, and what the government has done. We can be very proud of that. There’s much more to do, but what they have done has been absolutely incredible in six months. We know that there is protection being put in place so the little children are looked after and protected.
But the aid contribution should be beefed up more to meet the increasing demand. Besides, good care and protection must be provided to the orphaned children. There are some problems in the camps, and the children must be kept out of such hazards.
Are the Rohingya women and children who faced violence in Rakhine also in danger in Bangladesh?The women, who are victims of gender-based violence, and the children, who witnessed genocide and experienced the terrible torture of Burmese military in Burma [Myanmar], are still traumatized. They are in better and secure place now, but it’s hard for a woman to forget the experience of being raped or gang-raped. It’s hard for a child, too, to cope with experiences like this. So they need special care and protection.
After the Oxfam controversy, there has been much debate about aid workers exploiting vulnerable women and children during crises. Do you think there are such dangers here?We are more conscious around the world of rape. What’s coming out of what happened to the Rohingya people is that there has been massive torture and the Rohingya women have been raped by Burmese soldiers. That’s an attempt to destroy the man as well as the culture. Rape is a big problem, and we are beginning to understand it and deal with it. And our organizations are learning how to protect the children and put in place good systems to take care of them.
Has the international community done enough to address the crisis? What more should it do?There’s much the international communities can do. This problem can be solved through dialogue and diplomacy. These problems that we’re seeing around the world – of injustice, abuse of human rights, abuse of international laws, militaries torturing and killing… this must stop. We have to stop this, stop war. The alternative to this is dialogue and negotiation.
In many countries, we have good diplomats, and the diplomats should be doing everything they can, to talk and solve these problems for Burma [Myanmar], for Bangladesh. We have the prime minister here [Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina], who has done a lot for the refugees… [has to be] speaking to the Burmese government and sorting out how the refugees can be helped before the monsoon comes, and how they can have rights to citizenship, civil rights, and human rights, and safety, so that they feel they can go back to what is their country. No one wants to live in a refugee camp for 50-60 years, their children not getting education… that’s no life for anyone. So this has to be solved through the international communities, through the diplomats.
I know India and other countries around can help by first challenging the violence of the military. We will be appealing to countries to help us take the steps to bring Burma [Myanmar] to the ICC, to stop this genocide. And that’s responsibility of countries who have shown moral leadership. We need moral leadership from our political leaders and our spiritual leaders in the world today to solve these problems.
If we want to reap the harvest of peace and justice in the future, we will have to sow the seeds of non-violence, here and now, in the present. The international communities have to move to bring support and justice for the Rohingya people, and stop this genocide.


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UN rights chief blasts veto use amid ‘human slaughterhouses’

UN permanent members using vetoes during mass killings must answer to the victims, Zeid Ra’ad al-Hussein says.
Zeid Ra'ad al-Hussein addresses the Human Rights Council at the UN in Geneva, Switzerland on Monday [Denis Balibouse/Reuters]
Zeid Ra’ad al-Hussein addresses the Human Rights Council at the UN in Geneva, Switzerland on Monday [Denis Balibouse/Reuters]
The outgoing UN human rights chief launched a rare tirade against veto-wielding members of the UN Security Council for failing to intervene in “some of the most prolific slaughterhouses of humans in recent times”.
Zeid Ra’ad al-Hussein – in a passionate reprimand of the Security Council’s permanent member states – said on Monday that responsibility for the continuation of “so much pain” lies in particular with RussiaChina, and the United States, which he accused of misusing their veto power.
Speaking to the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva, Switzerland, in his last speech before his four-year term expires, Zeid did not mince words.
“Second to those who are criminally responsible – those who kill and maim – the responsibility for the continuation of so much pain lies with the five permanent members of the UN Security Council,” he said.
“So long as the veto is used by them to block any unity of action when it is needed the most, when it could reduce the extreme sufferings of innocent people, then it is they – the permanent members – who must answer before the victims.”
He said France and the United Kingdom had shown leadership in championing a code of conduct on the use of the veto, which is supported by 115 nations.
“It is time for the love of mercy that China, Russia and the United States join them and end the pernicious use of the veto,” said Zeid, whose expires in August.
Zeid also highlighted inaction in the “most prolific slaughterhouses” such as Syria’s Eastern Ghouta; the Ituri and Kasai regions of the Democratic Republic of Congo; the embattled city of Taiz in YemenBurundi; and Myanmar’s Rakhine state.

The Rohingya

A crackdown by security forces in Myanmar’s northern Rakhine state has driven nearly 700,000 Rohingya people across the border into Bangladesh since last August, leading the UN to accuse the government of an ethnic-cleansing campaign against the Muslim minority who face acute discrimination in the mainly Buddhist nation.
Three Nobel Peace Prize winners have visited refugee camps in Cox’s Bazaar, Bangladesh, and urged their fellow laureate – Myanmar’s de facto leader Aung San Suu Kyi – to acknowledge the atrocities against the Rohingya.
WATCH

Is Myanmar ‘whitewashing’ the Rohingya crisis?

“This is genocidal rape, torture, murder of the Rohingya people,” Mairead Maguire, the 1976 Nobel Peace Prize winner, told Al Jazeera.
“I would like to ask our sister laureate to go to the villages – that mostly have been flattened and destroyed. I would like Aung San Suu Kyi to accompany us to the villages of the Rohingya and actually acknowledge they’re human beings,” said Maguire, breaking down in tears.
EU countries on Monday demanded sanctions against senior Myanmar military officers over “serious and systematic” rights abuses against the Rohingya.
EU foreign ministers meeting in Brussels said the situation in Myanmar was “extremely serious”, pointing to widespread abuses by the military, “including rape and killings”.
The ministers tasked the bloc’s diplomatic chief Federica Mogherini with making “proposals for targeted restrictive measures against senior military officers of the Myanmar armed forces responsible for serious and systematic human rights violations without delay”.
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24 February, 2018

Irrawaddy Editors are ICC-worthy.

Their outfit Irrawaddy News Group is a genocide cheer-leader, an equivalent of Rwanda’s murderous radio.
It spreads factually incorrect lies & stokes Islamophobia (a New Fascism) among the Burmese readership of its 10 million supporters.
Irrawaddy Facebook has 10 million followers.
Their reach is extremely dangerous.  It is destroying the fabric of the Burmese society at large. 
Here is a concrete example:
“Dr Zarni is a human rights activist.  He has spoken out single-mindedly on the issue of Muslims in N. Rakhine State during the transition into a partial civilian government (of NLD).”
ဒေါက်တာဇာနည်သည် လှုအခွင့်အရေး တက်ကြွလှုပ်ရှားသူ တဦးဖြစ်ပြီး မြန်မာနိုင်ငံ အရပ်သားတပိုင်း အစိုးရများ ပြောင်းလဲလာပြီးနောက်ပိုင်း ရခိုင်ပြည်နယ် မြောက်ပိုင်းက မူဆလင်များ အရေးနှင့် ပတ်သက်သည့် မှတ်ချက်များကို တစိုက်မတ်မတ် ပြောလာသည်။
I spoke out as early as 2012 when I realised  clearly my country was committing a genocide against Rohingya, and I resigned from my professorship in Brunei on 31 Dec 2012 when my employer attempted to stop me from speaking out. 
Check Irrawaddy story’s blatant lies against facts and analyses and perspectives at Zarni’s Blog here:
image
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20 February, 2018

Trump lauds Bangladesh for hosting Rohingyas

Diplomatic Correspondent
US President Donald Trump has deeply appreciated Bangladesh for hosting more than a million forcibly displaced Rohingyas from Myanmar and assured of continued political and humanitarian support to Bangladesh in addressing the crisis.

Trump’s message was conveyed to Bangladesh Foreign Secretary Shahidul Haque when he met Lisa Curtis, deputy assistant to the US president, in Washington, DC on Friday.
Shahidul also met the White House senior director for South and Central Asia at the National Security Council.
According to a press release of Bangladesh embassy in Washington, DC received yesterday, Shahidul during his meeting with Lisa discussed bilateral, regional and global security issues.
The Bangladesh foreign secretary later met Ambassador Alice Wells, principal deputy assistant secretary of the South and Central Asian Affairs Bureau at the US state department.
While discussing various aspects of growing partnership between Bangladesh and the US, Ambassador Wells conveyed to Shahidul that Secretary of State Rex Tillerson is seized with the issue and commended Bangladesh’s extremely generous attitude and efforts to shelter such a huge number of persecuted Rohingyas from Myanmar.
The foreign secretary in his last meeting met Ambassador Mark Storella, acting assistant secretary of the Bureau of Population, Refugees and Migration at the US state department.
During the meeting, Shahidul conveyed Bangladesh’s appreciation to the US for strongly supporting Bangladesh in addressing the Rohingya crisis.
Ambassador Mark also praised Bangladesh’s humane approach, despite its own resource constrains, to host more than a million Rohingyas who fled the atrocities in northern Rakhine of Myanmar.
He also said the US would continue to provide humanitarian assistance to the forcibly displaced Rohingyas in Bangladesh.
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10 February, 2018

U.N. says Reuters report on Myanmar massacre 'alarming,' need for investigation

Image may contain: 3 people, grass, outdoor and nature

 Reuters Staff


UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) - The United Nations on Friday described the details of a Reuters investigation into the killing of Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar as “alarming” and said it showed the need for a thorough probe into the violence in the country’s Rakhine state.
 Ten Rohingya Muslim men with their hands bound kneel as members of the Myanmar                      security forces stand guard in Inn Din village September 2, 2017. Handout via REUTERS
“We’re aware of this latest report, the details of which are very alarming. This once more attests to the need for a full and thorough investigation by the authorities of all violence in Rakhine State and attacks on the various communities there,” U.N. spokesman Farhan Haq told reporters.
U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has called for the release of the two detained journalists and continues to press for that, Haq said.


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Re: Oxford U. Press, Myanmar Genocide & Its Choice of Dr Leider as the Expert on Rohingyas




















5 February 2018 
We, the undersigned group of scholars and rights campaigners, are disturbed by the fact that OUP’s Oxford Research Encyclopedias (ORE) Asian History series has commissioned Dr Jacques Leider, head of the Bangkok-based Ecole Française de l’ Extrême-Orient (EFEO) and a well-known advisor to the Myanmar military’s Armed Forces Historical Museum in Naypyidaw, to write a reference article on the subject of the Rohingya people in the forthcoming series: the ORE Asian History (under “Political”, see “Rohingya: Emergence and Vicissitudes of a Communal Muslim Identity in Myanmar (Jacques Leider), forthcoming Jan–Mar 2018”, found 03 February 2018 
As you know, the Tatmadaw (the official name of the Myanmar armed forces) has been credibly accused of committing crimes under international law including crimes against humanity and even the crime of all crimes, genocide, against the predominantly Muslim Rohingya. 
As you also know, the Oxford University Press (OUP) has a very well-earned reputation for fairness and authority in the fields in which they publish reference material. Anything published by OUP online about the Rohingya and Myanmar will be given a great deal of credibility by both scholars and the general public and carry a great deal of weight in any ongoing disputes over the exact legal name of the crimes against this world’s largest stateless population whose group identity and historical presence is being erased officially and popularly in Myanmar. 
We therefore draw your attention to our following concerns regarding your selection of Dr Jacques Leider to write a reference article for the ORE Asian History series: 
(1) We find that positions taken by Dr Leider in interviews with the press, in public talks and in published articles raise serious questions about his objectivity regarding the Rohingya and their history. His well-documented pattern of denials that the Myanmar military-directed mass violence and scorched-earth military operations against the Rohingya community – the subject of his ORE article – is challenged by the growing body of legal analyses and human rights research reports which point to the fact that Myanmar’s persecution of the Rohingya as a group amounts to international crimes including crimes against humanity and genocide. 
(2) We believe that televised appearances by Dr Leider with military and government officials condoning state policies against the Rohingya give the appearance to the viewing public that he validates views that underlie the Myanmar military's ousting in 2017 of 680,000 people and the massacre of Rohingya for which the military has recently admitted responsibility. A recent English-Burmese bilingual book entitled “Talk on Rakhine Issue: Discussion on Finding Solutions” published by the Ministry of Defence’s Myawaddy News Group in Myanmar highlights the fact, in photos and text, that Dr Leider was the only foreign expert to participate in the strategic discussion organized by this official propaganda organ of the Myanmar MOD in the first month of what the United Nations officially described as “ethnic cleansing” of the Rohingya. On 7 and 8 September 2017, Dr Leider was on stage seated with two ex-Lt-Colonels named Than Aye and Ko Ko Hlaing (respectively, ex-officer-in-charge of the strategic affairs unit and the ex-adviser to the former General and former President Thein Sein 2010-15) in the Myanmar capital Naypyidaw at the said invitation-only event billed as “Talk on Rakhine Issue: Discussion on Finding Solutions”. 
In the introduction of the aforementioned book published by the Myanmar Military, the position of Myanmar regarding the actions taken against the Rohingya – which have been abundantly documented and assessed as egregious human rights violations by six successive UN Special Rapporteurs on the human rights situation in Myanmar since 1992 as well as by the world’s leading human rights monitors such as Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch – is presented as a legitimate course of action (that is, by the Myanmar military to defend the country against Islam’s attempt to expand its demographic power base and dominate the world; see supra at p. 4 “Talk on Rakhine Issues”, Ministry of Defence Myawaddy News Group). 
In these strategic discussions, ex-Colonel Ko Ko Hlaing openly singled out Oxford University as a very influential institution which hosted an international conference on the Rohingya where knowledge about the Rohingya (history, identity and repression) was discussed and disseminated. By this, he implied that Oxford University – and other similarly influential entities – is somewhere that the Myanmar military needs to try to make strategic inroads to promote its official denial both of Rohingya identity and history, and of the state-directed terror and expulsion. 
The audience was mainly composed of officials from the Ministry of Defence. Myanmar’s official and popular Islamophobia – whereby Muslims have been scapegoated in the same way as the Jews were in the old Europe – is well-documented in scholarly and human rights literature. These discussions took place at the time Leider’s host organization (the Myanmar military) was responsible for the violent deaths of “at least 6,700 Rohingya, in the most conservative estimations […] including at least 730 children below the age of five years,” in the first month alone of the military operations conducted in Northern Rakhine state of Myanmar (i.e. from 25 August to 24 September 2017), according to the findings from a limited survey carried out by the international humanitarian NGO Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) among the survivors of this wave of ethnic cleansing who are now in refugee camps in Chittagong, Bangladesh (see “Myanmar/Bangladesh: MSF surveys estimate that at least 6,700 Rohingya were killed during the attacks in Myanmar” http://www.msf.org/en/article/myanmarbangladesh-msf-surveys-estimate-least-6700-rohingya-were-killed-during-attacks ). 
(3) Dr Leider’s insistence (see “History Behind Rakhine State Conflict” https://www.irrawaddy.com/from-the-archive/history-behind-rakhine-state-conflict.html “The Frictions in the Rakhine State Are Less About Islamophobia Than Rohingya-Phobia” https://thewire.in/182611/frictions-rakhine-state-less-islamophobia-rohingya-phobia/ , and “The Truth About Myanmar’s Rohingya Issue” https://thediplomat.com/2016/03/the-truth-about-myanmars-rohingya-issue/ ) that Rohingya identity – not Rakhine or the majority Burmese – be critically scrutinized as a political identity born out of political and communal conflict indicates a bias against Rohingya claims of their long documented history of settled existence in Rakhine state. This pronounced bias (in addition to his evident relations with the Myanmar military) should have raised doubts about his appropriateness to write a reference article about the Rohingya. We perceive in Dr Leider’s writings and public statements an unconcealed bias against Muslim Rohingyas, which results in his dismissal or wilful ignorance of irrefutable (and easily accessible) evidence that effectively undermines his thesis which is that the Rohingya, unlike other “genuinely ethnic identities”, were manufactured by Muslim fighters or Mujahideens in the post-independence period of the 1950’s. For instance, Dr Leider labels it a “delusion” that the Government of the Union of Burma recognized the Rohingya as a constitutive ethnic group of the Union following the surrender of the separatist Mujahideen in July 1961. The irrefutable fact is this: as late as 1964, the Government of Burma officially included the Rohingya as an ethnic group of Burma in its official Burmese language “Encyclopaedia Myanmar” (V. 9). In addition, the Rohingya were granted a slot on the country’s sole broadcasting station known as the Burma Broadcasting Service (BBS) as an indigenous language programme, broadcast three times per week, alongside other indigenous languages such as Shan, Lahu, etc., until the 3rd year (1964) of the military rule of General Ne Win. 
The readily accessible official documentation supports the Rohingya’s collective claim that they were officially recognized as an ethnic group of the Union of Burma, from which follows the conclusion that it is the State of Myanmar that has embarked on the project of erasing Rohingya ethnic identity, their history and presence which predates the formation of the post-colonial state of the Union of Burma in 1948. Dr Leider’s choice to ignore these primary and official sources regarding Rohingya ethnic identity and nationality further reinforces Myanmar’s institutionalized propaganda and Fake News that the Rohingya do not exist as an ethnic nationality, while lending a veneer of objective scholarly authority. We observe, further, that there is an alarming parallel between Myanmar’s de-nationalization and identity destruction and the German de-nationalization of the Jewish population under Nazi rule. 
(4) Genocide denial is a crime in countries such as Germany. Although there is no UK or international law against which the denial of state-directed crimes against humanity, including genocide, of the Rohingya can be judged, the consensus is emerging among the world’s leading institutions and scholars in the field of genocide studies – from the US Holocaust Memorial Museum and Yale University Human Rights Law Clinic, the University of Washington Law School, the Queen Mary University of London International State Crimes Initiative to the Russell-Sartre-inspired Permanent Peoples’ Tribunal on Myanmar – that Myanmar is responsible for genocide. Even the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights has expressly stated that he is “not ruling out” that genocide is being committed against the Rohingya. Yet, despite the well-publicized findings by world-renowned research institutes and scholars of genocide, Dr Leider dismisses them. He also fails to acknowledge that Myanmar’s majoritarian racism among the country’s Buddhists is violent. He characterises Buddhist racism towards the Rohingya as merely “strong sentiment”. 
We do not deny that Dr Leider, like anyone else, has a right to comment on the Rohingya or any other topic, but when someone takes such a strong position against the historicity of one group's claims regarding ethnicity/identity (and only one group's in a context of conflict between two or more groups), it seems unfair that they should be commissioned for a project to write an article on the ethnic group in question that seeks to present itself as a fair and unbiased reference source. The ORE is certainly not an appropriate vehicle in which to publish such views. Indeed, OUP should have nothing to do with them. 
We note also that OUP appears only to have commissioned an article on the Rohingya and not on the Rakhine Buddhist community whose ethnic claims, we understand, are no stronger than those of the Rohingya. It is hard to interpret this as other than OUP’s taking a stand in favour of the Myanmar military and against the Rohingya for reasons unclear and that OUP supports, at least indirectly, the current ethnic cleansing which Dr Leider's writings and media appearances are used to deny. 
Finally, it needs to be stressed that there is something more consequential than our objection per se to OUP’s commissioning a reference article by Dr Leider on the target of the Myanmar military's repression. That is the question whether Western educational institutions of worldwide influence should allow themselves, wittingly or not, to be used as a platform by illiberal regimes through academics and scholars whom the regimes view as supporters of their views (and hence as, in effect, their proxies for propaganda). The well-reported cases of Cambridge University Press and China, or the LSE and the Ghaddafi regime, spring to mind. 
It is worth quoting the recent words of Ruth Barnett, a Jewish Kindertransport survivor in Britain: 
“‘Never Again’ is unlikely to be achieved in our lifetime but it is we who need to make an effective input towards making it happen. Each and every one of us can do something. It is essential to learn to contain our own violent impulses so that we can talk and negotiate instead of exacerbating and increasing the violence of others. 
“Perhaps the most poisonous factor is the toleration and cover-up of denial. Denial opens the door for others to commit crimes against humanity, as we clearly see others getting away with it. We need to enthuse and stimulate curiosity and an insistence to expose the truth. 
“We live with so much denial that many people can no longer distinguish between misinformation, disinformation and truth." 
(Ruth Barnett, 27 January 2018, "I Survived The Holocaust. Merely Remembering It Is No Longer Good Enough", RightsInfo.org, 
We sincerely urge OUP to reconsider your editorial decision to commission Dr Leider to write a reference article on the subject of the Rohingya. We ask that if this article goes ahead, it includes a clear disclaimer that Dr Leider is not a distant observer and that the article should be considered as an opinion piece, not as an unbiased reference source, regarding a controversial subject which has already been documented by MSF to have caused the deaths of over 6,700 Rohingya in the first month of Myanmar’s 2017 military attack and the flight of 680,000 refugees over several months. 
1. Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak, University Professor and a founding member of the Institute for Comparative Literature and Society, Columbia University, USA 
2. Nursyahbani Katjasungkana, National Coordinator of Indonesia Legal Aid Association for Women,        Indonesia 
3. Rainer Schulze, Professor Emeritus of Modern European History, University of Essex, and Founding Editor of the journal “The Holocaust in History and Memory,” UK 
4. Noam Chomsky, American linguist, philosopher and activist (Institute Professor, MIT), USA 
5. Mofidul Hoque, author and activist, Director, Center for the Study of Genocide and Justice, Liberation War Museum, Bangladesh 
6. Tapan Bose, filmmaker, human rights defender, India 
7. Richard Falk, Professor of International Law, Emeritus, Princeton University, USA 
8. Barbara Harrell-Bond, OBE Emerita Professor and Founding Director of The Refugee Studies Centre, University of Oxford 1982–1996, UK 
9. Barbara Harriss-White, Emeritus Professor of Development Studies, Oxford University, Emeritus Fellow of Wolfson College, Oxford, UK 
10. Ritu Dewan, Vice President, Indian Society of Labour Economics; Director Centre for Development Research and Action; Executive Director, Centre for Study of Society and Secularism; President, Indian Association for Women's Studies (2014-17) 
11. Prof. Gregory Stanton, Founding Chairman, Genocide Watch & George Mason University. Arlington, Virginia, USA 
12. Johan Galtung, Founder, Peace Studies 
13. Youk Chhang, Chairman, Genocide Documentation Center of Camboda/The Sleuk Rith Institute, Cambodia 
14. Abdul Malik Mujahid, Chair Emeritus Parliament of the World's Religions 
15. Karen Jungblut, Director of Global Initiatives, USC Shoah Foundation, USA 
16. María do Mar Castro Varela, Professor of Pedagogy and Social Work and activist, Alice Salomon University, Berlin, Germany 
17. C Abrar, Professor of International Relations, University of Dhaka, Bangladesh 
18. John H. Weiss, Associate Professor of History, Cornell University, USA 
19. Khin Mai Aung, Burmese American civil rights lawyer and writer, New York, USA 
20. Maung Zarni, Burmese human rights activist and scholar, Genocide Documentation Center of Cambodia/The Sleuk Rith Institute 
21. Harn Yawnghwe, Executive Director, Associates to Develop Democratic Burma Inc./Euro-Burma Office, Canada 
22. Bilal Raschid, Past President of Burmese Muslim Association 
23. Swagato Sarkar, DPhil (Oxford), Associate Professor, O.P. Jindal Global University, India 
24. Sumeet Mhaskar, DPhil (Oxford), O.P. Jindal Global University, India 
25. Prof. Donesh Mohan, Academic, India 
26. Dr. Peggy Mohan, Author, India 
27. Prof. Ranabir Samaddar, Academic, India 
28. Rita Manchanda, Feminist writer, India 
29. Samsul Islam, Author, India 
30. Neelima Sharma, Theatre activist, India 
31. Jawed Naqvi, journalist, India 
32. Seema Mustafa, journalist, India 
33. Ashok Agrwaal, lawyer, India 
34. Dr. Walid Salem, Al Quds University & the Director of The Centre for Democracy and Community Development, East Jerusalem, Palestine 
35. Jun Nishikawa, PhD, professor emeritus, Waseda University, Japan 
36. Dr Ravi P Bhatia, an educationist and peace researcher & Retired professor, Delhi University, India 
37. Gill H. boehringer, Honorary Senior Research Fellow, Macquarie University School of Law, Sydney , Australia 
38. Paul Copeland, C M, (Recipient, Order of Canada), Lawyer, Toronto, Canada 
39. U Kyaw Win, Professor Emeritus, Orange Coast College, California, USA 
40. Professor Michael W. Charney, Academic, UK 
41. Dr Amit Upadhyay, Assistant professor, TISS Hyderabad, India 
42. Dr. Nicola Suyin Pocock, United Nations University International Institute of Global Health, Malaysia 
43. Rezaur Rahman Lenin,Academic Activist, Adjuct Faculty, Eastern University Bangladesh & Executive Director, Law Life Culture, Bangladesh 
44. Natalie Brinham, ESRC PhD scholar, Queen Mary University of London School of Law, UK 
45. Niranjan Sahoo, PhD, Senior Fellow, Observer Research Foundation, India 
46. Prof. Dr. Célestin Tagou, Prof. of PS, IR P&D Studies, Dean of the Faculty of Social Sciences and International Relations, Protestant University of Central Africa, Executive Secretariat of the Network of Protestant Universities of Africa
47. Dr. Tilman Evers, Germany 
48. Jørgen Johansen, Deputy Editor of Journal of Resistance Studies, Sweden 
49. Sarah Tobias, philanthropist & activist, Canada 
50. Miki Lanza, Movimento Nonviolento c/o Centro Studi Sereno Regis, Torino, Italy 
51. Oskar Butcher, human rights activist and scholar, Germany 
52. Professor Emeritus George Kent, University of Hawai'i and Deputy Editor, World Nutrition, USA 
53. Sebastian Eck, Galtung-Institut, Switzerland 
54. Robert J. Burrowes Ph.D., co-founder 'The People's Charter to Create a Nonviolent World', Australia 
55. Shadi Sadr, Executive Director of Justice for Iran, UK 
56. Tasnim Nazeer, Award-winning journalist and Universal Peace Federation Ambassador for Peace, UK 
57. Emir Ramic, Academic, Ph.D., Chairman of the Institute for Research of Genocide, Canada 
58. Nadeem Haque, P.Eng. - Director of the Institute of Higher Reasoning (IHR), Canada 
59. Diana de la Rúa Eugenio, President of Asociación Respuesta para la Paz -ARP-, member NGO of      OAS, President of International Peace Research Association Foundation -IPRA Foundation, Argentina 
60. Dr. Syeda Hamid, Academic and Author, India 
61. Dr. Siddiq Wahid, Historian and Educationist, India 
62. Dr. Syed Ahmed Haroon, Psychiatrist, Pakistan 
63. Anis Haroon, Poet, Pakistan 
64. Sushil Pyakurel, Adviser to President of Nepal 
65. Porf. Noor Ahmad Baba, Academic, India 
66. Anand Patwardhan, Filmmaker, India 
67. Rodolphe Prom, President, Destination Justice, Cambodia 
68. Doreen Chen, Co-Director, Destination Justice, Cambodia 
69. Syed Zainul Abedin, Painter, Poet, Journalist, Bangladesh 
70. Dr. Navsharan Singh, Researcher and author, India 
71. Leo fernandez, IT Specialist, India 
72. Feroz Medhi, Filmmaker social activist, Canada 
73. John Packer, Associate Professor of Law and Director, Human Rights Research and Education Centre, University of Ottawa, Canada 
74. Fathima, MA Women's Studies Student, Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai, India 
75. Rana Jawad, University of Bath, UK 
76. Prof. Dr. Sami A. Al-Arian Director and Public Affairs Professor, Center for Islam and Global Affairs İslam ve Küresel İlişkiler Merkezi, Turkey 
77. Penny Green, Professor of Law and Globalisation and Director of the International State Crime Initiative, Queen Mary University of London, UK 
78. Karen Busby, Professor of Law & Director, Centre for Human Rights Research, University of Manitoba 
79. Lyal S. Sunga, Visiting Professor in International Relations and Global Politics, The American University of Rome, Italy 
80. Dr. Christina Szurlej, Assistant Professor, St. Thomas University (Canada) 
81. Matthew Smith, Chief Executive Officer, Fortify Rights
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