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

23 December, 2017

Pressed by lawmakers, US mulls more sanctions on Myanmar

The State Department said Friday the U.S. is considering further actions against those responsible for "ethnic cleansing" of Rohingya Muslims, after a Myanmar general was blacklisted and Democratic lawmakers called for more military officers to face sanctions.
Rep. Eliot Engel, the top-ranking Democrat on the House Foreign Affairs Committee, contended that Myanmar authorities were committing genocide in Rakhine State. He said it was "stunning" that the Trump administration has only designated one person from Myanmar over the bloody crackdown that caused a refugee exodus to Bangladesh.
The United States imposed sanctions on Maung Maung Soe, who until last month was chief of the Myanmar army's Western command responsible for security operations in Rakhine. He was among 13 people worldwide punished Thursday under human rights legislation.
Katina Adams, a State Department spokeswoman for East Asia, said Friday the U.S. is continuing to consider options under U.S. and international law "to help ensure that those responsible for ethnic cleansing and other atrocities face appropriate consequences."
The crackdown has forced 650,000 of the minority Muslims to flee the majority-Buddhist nation, casting a shadow over its transition to democracy after decades of direct military rule. That has soured relations with Washington, which in the past five years had been rolling back economic sanctions to support Myanmar's political change.
"With 6,000 dead and thousands more raped, beaten and displaced, it is clear Maung Maung Soe has not acted alone," said Rep. Joe Crowley of New York. "The other military officials involved in the ethnic cleansing against the Rohingya must be sanctioned for their roles in this genocide. The United States has a moral obligation to act."
Engel has put forward legislation to impose targeted sanctions and visa restrictions on those responsible for the crackdown. He called Friday for sanctions against the Bureau of Special Operations in the capital, Naypyidaw, including the military commander in chief, Min Aung Hlaing; the field commanders of three divisions under Maung Maung Soe's command in Rakhine State; and military commanders in northern Kachin and Shan states accused of "flagrant abuses of civilians."
Sen. Jeff Merkley of Oregon also supports more sanctions. He said by barring a U.N. human rights investigator from the country, the government was trying "to cover up and make invisible a campaign of mass atrocities."
Myanmar denies allegations of human rights violations, saying its security forces have not targeted civilians and were responding to attacks by Rohingya militants in August.
The aid group Doctors Without Borders estimates at least 6,700 Rohingya civilians were killed in the first month of the crackdown.
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19 December, 2017

Burma: 40 Rohingya Villages Burned Since October

      

An updated map of destruction of Rohingya villages in northern Rakhine State during October and November 2017.© 2017 Human Rights Watch
By Human Rights Watch
December 18, 2017
New York – Analysis of satellite imageryreveals new destruction of Rohingya villages during October and November 2017 in northern Rakhine State in Burma, Human Rights Watch said today.
Human Rights Watch identified 40 villages with building destruction occurring in October and November, increasing the total to 354 villages that have been partially or completely destroyed since August 25, 2017. During this period, thousands more Rohingya refugees fled Burma and arrived in Bangladesh.
Satellite imagery confirms that dozens of buildings were burned the same week Burma and Bangladesh signed a Memorandum of Understanding on November 23 to begin returning refugees in Bangladesh within two months. On November 25, satellite data detected an active fire and building destruction in Myo Mi Chang village in Rakhine State’s Maungdaw Township. Four villages suffered building destruction between November 25 and December 2.
“The Burmese army’s destruction of Rohingya villages within days of signing a refugee repatriation agreement with Bangladesh shows that commitments to safe returns were just a public relations stunt,” said Brad Adams, Asia director at Human Rights Watch. “The satellite imagery shows what the Burmese army denies: that Rohingya villages continue to be destroyed. Burmese government pledges to ensure the safety of returning Rohingya cannot be taken seriously.”
Human Rights Watch has used satellite imagery to assess and monitor over 1,000 villages and towns in the townships of Maungdaw, Buthidaung, and Rathiduang, where the Burmese military and vigilantes have engaged in attacks on Rohingya. Human Rights Watch found that the damage patterns in the 354 affected villages are consistent with burning occurring in the weeks after the military operations began in late August.
Of the 354 affected villages, at least 118 were either partially or completely destroyed after September 5 — the date the Burmese State Counsellor’s office announced as the end of clearance operations. Of the 40 new villages with building destruction identified by Human Rights Watch, 24 were destroyed in October, 11 in November, and 5 over both months.
The latest documented arson attacks occurred between November 25 and December 2 in four villages. Satellite data from environmental sensors detected an active fire at 12:30 p.m. in the Rohingya village of Myo Mi Chang in Maungdaw Township on November 25. Building destruction was concentrated in the center of the village, which was undamaged until this attack. Other villages subjected to arson attacks during this period include Nga/Myin Baw, Goke Pi, and an unknown village in the village tract of Zee Pin Chaung.
On November 23, Bangladesh and Burma signed an Arrangement on Return of Displaced Persons from Rakhine State on behalf of “residents of Rakhine State” who crossed from Burma into Bangladesh after October 9, 2016 and August 25, 2017. In letters to both governments, Human Rights Watch said the agreement should be shelved, noting the lack of involvement by the United Nations and the unrealistic timetable for safe and voluntary returns starting in January 2018.
Since late August, the Burmese military has committed widespread killings, rapes, arbitrary arrests, and mass arson in hundreds of predominantly Rohingya villages in northern Rakhine State, forcing more than 655,000 Rohingya to flee to neighboring Bangladesh. Human Rights Watch has found that this campaign of ethnic cleansing amounts tocrimes against humanity. Attacks by the Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (ARSA) armed group on 30 security force outposts and an army base that killed 11 Burmese security personnel set off the Burmese military “clearance operations” against the Rohingya.
In November, a Burmese army “investigation team” report concluded that there were “no deaths of innocent people” during the military operation in Rakhine State, and that at least 376 “terrorists” were killed during fighting, contrary to information reported by the UN, media outlets, and human rights groups, including Human Rights Watch. The humanitarian group Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF) on December 14 concluded that at least 6,700 Rohingya were killed in the violence, over 700 of whom were children, based on survey data of refugees in Bangladesh.
“The UN Security Council and concerned governments shouldn’t continue to stand by as evidence of continuing attacks on the Rohingya community comes to light,” Adams said. “Targeted sanctions need to be imposed now against those responsible for ordering and carrying out crimes against humanity.”
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03 December, 2017

Watchdog Finds Widespread Rape of Rohingya Women, Girls

Myanmar security forces have committed widespread rape against women and girls as part of a campaign of ethnic cleansing against Rohingya Muslims in Arakan State, Human Rights Watch said in a report released on Thursday.
The 37-page report, “All of My Body Was Pain: Sexual Violence Against Rohingya Women and Girls in Burma,” documents the Myanmar military’s gang rape of Rohingya women and girls and further acts of violence, cruelty, and humiliation.
Many women described witnessing the murders of their young children, spouses, and parents.
“Rape has been a prominent and devastating feature of the Burmese (Myanmar) military’s campaign of ethnic cleansing against the Rohingya,” said Skye Wheeler, women’s rights emergencies researcher at Human Rights Watch and author of the report.
“The Burmese military’s barbaric acts of violence have left countless women and girls brutally harmed and traumatized.”
According to HRW, since August 25 the military has committed killings, rapes, arbitrary arrests, and mass arson of homes in hundreds of predominantly Rohingya villages in northern Arakan State, forcing more than 600,000 Rohingya to flee to neighboring Bangladesh.
Human Rights Watch has found that these abuses amount to crimes against humanity under international law. The military operations were sparked by attacks by the armed group the Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (ARSA) on 30 security force outposts and an army base that killed 11 Burmese security personnel.
This report was released just a day after US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said the US is deeply concerned by “credible reports” of atrocities committed by Myanmar’s security forces and called for an independent investigation into a humanitarian crisis in which hundreds of thousands of Muslim Rohingya have fled to Bangladesh.
Speaking at a joint news conference with leader Aung San Suu Kyi in Myanmar’s capital, Tillerson said the US would consider individual sanctions against people found responsible for the violence, but he would not advise “broad-based economic sanctions” against the entire country.
“All of that has to be evidence-based,” Tillerson said.
“If we have credible information that we believe to be very reliable that certain individuals were responsible for certain acts that we find unacceptable, then targeted sanctions on individuals very well may be appropriate,” he said.
Tillerson was on a one-day visit to the country and also met with Myanmar’s powerful military chief, Min Aung Hlaing, who is in charge of operations in Arakan.
Although Suu Kyi has been the de facto head of Myanmar’s civilian government since her party swept elections in 2015, she is limited in her control of the country by a constitution written under the military junta that ruled Myanmar for decades. The military is in charge of the operations in northern Arakan, and ending them is not up to Suu Kyi.
Still, Suu Kyi has faced widespread criticism for not speaking out in defense of the Rohingya. At Wednesday’s news conference Suu Kyi denied she had been silent on the issue, saying she had personally commented on the situation as well as issued statements through her office, NBC reported.
“I haven’t been silent,” she said. “What people mean is what I say is not interesting enough. But what I say is not meant to be exciting. It’s meant to be accurate. And it’s aimed at creating more harmony and a better future for everybody. Not setting people against each other.”
But UN human rights chief Zeid Ra’ad al-Hussein said he was “hugely disappointed” in Suu Kyi, noting that he appealed to her after a smaller scale flight of Rohingya last October “to use all her emotional standing and moral standing inside the country to confront the military and put an end to this.”
NBC reported al-Hussein as saying that “evidently, she was unable to do that and now she speaks in compassionate terms.”
But he said he fears the Rohingya who have fled to Bangladesh since Aug. 25 won’t be able to return “because the operations were so systematic, so organized, so well-planned, that . there was intent involved.”
“I believe it rises to the threshold of very serious violations, international crimes,” he said.
Myanmar’s military has denied the accusations. The military said it had interviewed thousands of people during a month long investigation into the conduct of troops in Arakan.
http://arakanna.com/wp_arakanna/en/?p=11800
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Watchdog Finds Widespread Rape of Rohingya Women, Girls

Myanmar security forces have committed widespread rape against women and girls as part of a campaign of ethnic cleansing against Rohingya Muslims in Arakan State, Human Rights Watch said in a report released on Thursday.
The 37-page report, “All of My Body Was Pain: Sexual Violence Against Rohingya Women and Girls in Burma,” documents the Myanmar military’s gang rape of Rohingya women and girls and further acts of violence, cruelty, and humiliation.
Many women described witnessing the murders of their young children, spouses, and parents.
“Rape has been a prominent and devastating feature of the Burmese (Myanmar) military’s campaign of ethnic cleansing against the Rohingya,” said Skye Wheeler, women’s rights emergencies researcher at Human Rights Watch and author of the report.
“The Burmese military’s barbaric acts of violence have left countless women and girls brutally harmed and traumatized.”
According to HRW, since August 25 the military has committed killings, rapes, arbitrary arrests, and mass arson of homes in hundreds of predominantly Rohingya villages in northern Arakan State, forcing more than 600,000 Rohingya to flee to neighboring Bangladesh.
Human Rights Watch has found that these abuses amount to crimes against humanity under international law. The military operations were sparked by attacks by the armed group the Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (ARSA) on 30 security force outposts and an army base that killed 11 Burmese security personnel.
This report was released just a day after US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said the US is deeply concerned by “credible reports” of atrocities committed by Myanmar’s security forces and called for an independent investigation into a humanitarian crisis in which hundreds of thousands of Muslim Rohingya have fled to Bangladesh.
Speaking at a joint news conference with leader Aung San Suu Kyi in Myanmar’s capital, Tillerson said the US would consider individual sanctions against people found responsible for the violence, but he would not advise “broad-based economic sanctions” against the entire country.
“All of that has to be evidence-based,” Tillerson said.
“If we have credible information that we believe to be very reliable that certain individuals were responsible for certain acts that we find unacceptable, then targeted sanctions on individuals very well may be appropriate,” he said.
Tillerson was on a one-day visit to the country and also met with Myanmar’s powerful military chief, Min Aung Hlaing, who is in charge of operations in Arakan.
Although Suu Kyi has been the de facto head of Myanmar’s civilian government since her party swept elections in 2015, she is limited in her control of the country by a constitution written under the military junta that ruled Myanmar for decades. The military is in charge of the operations in northern Arakan, and ending them is not up to Suu Kyi.
Still, Suu Kyi has faced widespread criticism for not speaking out in defense of the Rohingya. At Wednesday’s news conference Suu Kyi denied she had been silent on the issue, saying she had personally commented on the situation as well as issued statements through her office, NBC reported.
“I haven’t been silent,” she said. “What people mean is what I say is not interesting enough. But what I say is not meant to be exciting. It’s meant to be accurate. And it’s aimed at creating more harmony and a better future for everybody. Not setting people against each other.”
But UN human rights chief Zeid Ra’ad al-Hussein said he was “hugely disappointed” in Suu Kyi, noting that he appealed to her after a smaller scale flight of Rohingya last October “to use all her emotional standing and moral standing inside the country to confront the military and put an end to this.”
NBC reported al-Hussein as saying that “evidently, she was unable to do that and now she speaks in compassionate terms.”
But he said he fears the Rohingya who have fled to Bangladesh since Aug. 25 won’t be able to return “because the operations were so systematic, so organized, so well-planned, that . there was intent involved.”
“I believe it rises to the threshold of very serious violations, international crimes,” he said.
Myanmar’s military has denied the accusations. The military said it had interviewed thousands of people during a month long investigation into the conduct of troops in Arakan.
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Azhar imam to visit Rohingya refugee camps in Bang. in Nov.

Grand Imam of Al Azhar and Chairman of the Muslim Council of Elders Ahmad el Tayyeb will visit the camps of Rohingya Muslim refugees in Bangladesh late November.
During his visit, Tayyeb is expected to meet with senior officials and a number of scholars in Bangladesh.
Under Secretary of Al Azhar Abbas Shoman and Secretary General of the council Ali Rashid Al Nuaimi will hold a press conference on Sunday to announce the details of Tayyeb’s visit.
The visit comes at the time the highest Sunni Muslim institution completes preparations for delivering the first relief and aid convoy to support hundreds of thousands of the Rohingya Muslim refugees, who suffer from difficult humanitarian and living conditions.
More than 600,000 Rohingya have fled violence in Myanmar displacing them over the border in Bangladesh, according to the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR). Most of the refugees are women and children.
The Rohingya are a stateless Muslim minority that live in the mostly Buddhist country of Myanmar. The United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein, has called the situation a “textbook example of ethnic cleansing.”
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27 November, 2017

Conditions in Myanmar’s Rakhine not in place to enable safe returns – UN refugee agency


In this photo taken in mid-October 2017, Rohingya refugees that have fled Myanmar’s Rakhine state, cross into Bangladesh at Palong Khali in the Cox’s Bazar district.
24 November 2017 – Amid reports of an agreement between the governments of Bangladesh and Myanmar on return of Rohingya refugees to Myanmar, the United Nations refugee agency has underscored that the returns must be voluntary, and take place in safe and dignified conditions.
“At present, conditions in Myanmar’s Rakhine state are not in place to enable safe and sustainable returns. Refugees are still fleeing, and many have suffered violence, rape, and deep psychological harm,” Adrian Edwards, a spokesperson for the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), told journalists at a regular media briefing in Geneva Friday.
“It is critical that returns do not take place precipitously or prematurely, without the informed consent of refugees or the basic elements of lasting solutions in place,” he stressed.
Over the past three months, widespread inter-communal violence in Myanmar’s northern Rakhine state resulted in some 622,000 people fleeing into neighbouring Bangladesh. Prior to this latest crisis, Bangladesh was already hosting well over 200,000 Rohingya refugees as a result of earlier displacements.
According to the UN refugee agency, some of those who fled witnessed the deaths of family and friends, and most have little or nothing to go back to with their homes and villages destroyed.
“Deep divisions between communities remain unaddressed,” added Mr. Edwards, underscoring that progress towards addressing the root causes of flight, including lack of citizenship for members of the Rohingya community, as recommended by the Rakhine Advisory Commission, will also be crucial.
Furthermore, humanitarian access in northern Rakhine state remains negligible.
At the briefing, the UNHCR spokesperson also noted that the UN agency looks forward to seeing details of the agreement between the two countries, and that it stands ready to help both governments work towards a solution for the Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh that meets international refugee and human rights standards.
“Refugees have the right to return [and] a framework that enables them to exercise this right in line with international standards, will be welcome,” he said.
http://www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=58152#.WhtmQTQVTce
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24 November, 2017

Rohingya fear returning to Myanmar after repatriation deal



Myanmar and Bangladesh have signed a deal for the repatriation of 600,000 Rohingya refugees who fled from reported military atrocities in Myanmar’s Rakhine state over the last three months. Some refugees fear returning to the country, where the United Nations say they faced “ethnic cleansing”
. Al Jazeera’s Scott Heidler reports from Myanmar’s largest city Yangon.
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23 November, 2017

Zimbabwe’s Presedent Robert Mugabe resigned after 37 years in power

Robert Mugabe resigned after 37 years in power as Zimbabwe’s army seized control last week. But was China pulling the strings?
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19 November, 2017

US won't be constrained by UN Security Council in Syria: Haley

Sat Nov 18, 2017 03:00
US Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley speaks during a meeting of the UN Security Council at the United Nations headquarters in New York on November 17, 2017. (Photo by Reuters)
US Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley speaks during a meeting of the UN Security Council at the United Nations headquarters in New York on November 17, 2017. (Photo by Reuters)
The United States does not consider itself constrained by the UN Security Council and may seek “justice” in Syria on its own terms, says the US representative to the UN, Nikki Haley.
Haley said on Friday that with or without unity of the council, Washington “will continue to fight for justice and accountability in Syria.”
She made the remarks after Russia vetoed a UN resolution that sought to extend the mandate of the international investigation into chemical weapons use in Syria.
The mandate for the US-drafted resolution, known as Joint Investigative Mechanism (JIM), expired on Friday. This was the third time in a month Russia vetoed attempts at the UN to extend the inquiry.
The council’s permanent member, Russia agreed to the creation of the investigation two years ago, but it has consistently questioned its work and conclusions. It has repeatedly cited flaws in the work on instigators.
Russia’s UN ambassador Vassily Nebenzia said on Friday that the investigation could only be extended if “fundamental flaws in its work” were fixed. He said that for the past two years the investigators had “rubber-stamped baseless accusations against Syria.”
They accused Syrian President Bashar Assad of using chemical weapons against his own people.  Syria, however, has repeatedly denied the allegations.
Haley further said that Russia has in recent weeks been trying “to delay, to distract and ultimately to defeat the effort to secure accountability for chemical weapons attacks in Syria.”
“Russia is wasting our time,” she argued. 
Her remarks provoked an angry response from Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, who accused her of having engaged in a “fake diplomacy.” 
“It seems we are witnessing a new phenomenon in international relations, as now, apart from fake news, there is also fake diplomacy,” Lavrov said. 
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov (Photo by AFP)
The US has long history of taking actions in Middle Eastern countries with no mandate from the United Nations. Back in August 2014, Washington along with some of its allies launched a campaign of airstrikes against what are said to be Daesh positions inside Iraq.
The coalition expanded its campaign to Syria in 2014 without any authorization from the Damascus government or a UN mandate.
US Defense Secretary James Mattis claimed on Monday that “the UN said that …basically we can go after ISIS (Daesh). And we're there to take them out.”
Lavrov, however, rejected his remarks on Thursday, saying the US presence in Syria “is illegitimate because it does not rely either on the decision of the UN Security Council or on the invitation of the legitimate government.” He said that there was no Security Council resolution that allowed US troops on the Syrian territory.
The US airstrikes have on many occasions--both in Iraq and Syria-- resulted in civilian casualties and failed to fulfill their declared aim of countering terrorism.
http://www.presstv.com/Detail/2017/11/18/542640/US-politics-Russian-security-council-Syria-chemical-weapons-Nikki-Haley

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Retno Marsudi to visit Rakhine State

Red: Reiny Dwinanda
 
Indonesian Foreign Affairs Minister Retno Marsudi
Indonesian Foreign Affairs Minister Retno Marsudi
 
REPUBLIKA.CO.ID, JAKARTA -- Indonesian Foreign Affairs Minister Retno Marsudi is scheduled to visit Myanmar on Sunday to inaugurate the construction of an Indonesian hospital in Muaung Bwe city, Rakhine State.
Arrmanatha Nasir, Foreign Ministry Spokesman, stated during a press briefing in Jakarta, Friday, that Marsudi would lay the first stone for the construction of Indonesia's first hospital in Rakhine State during the groundbreaking ceremony.
The hospital development process has been undergoing since April, including the preparations of its design and permit.
The hospital complex will occupy an area of approximately 12,000 square meters with the building area being 8,000 square meters.
"We expect the hospital development to be completed some time by the middle of next year," Nasir said.
The Indonesian hospital is a form of humanitarian assistance being made by Indonesia to the Myanmar people, and the hospital development has been funded by the Indonesian people, Indonesian Red Cross, Muslim and Buddhist communities, the private sector and the government of Indonesia.
The construction of the hospital costs around US$1.8 million, he revealed. It will involve the local contractor and use materials from the surrounding areas in Myanmar for the purpose of mobilizing the local economy, he added.
The Indonesian hospital will be operational inclusively, regardless of the background of the local people.
After laying the first stone for the construction of the Indonesian hospital in Rakhine State, Marsudi is scheduled to visit Naypyidaw to attend the 13th Asia-Europe Ministerial Meeting, which will be held from Nov 20-21, 2017.
http://en.republika.co.id/berita/en/national-politics/17/11/17/ozkdxc414-retno-marsudi-to-visit-rakhine-state
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ရိုဟင္ဂ်ာအမ်ဳိးသမီးမ်ား မုဒိမ္းက်င့္ခံရမွဳ တရုတ္မီဒီယာ ေဖာ္ၿပ - Rohingya women face violence, rape by Myanmar troops

By Shweta Bajaj
ျမန္မာအစုိးရနဲ႔ စစ္တပ္တုိ႔ရဲ့ အေကာင္းဆုံးမိတ္ေဆြက တရုတ္ႏုိင္ငံျဖစ္ပါတယ္။ အခုတ႐ုတ္ႏိုင္ငံရဲ႕ အဂၤ လိပ္ မီဒီယာတစ္ခုျဖစ္တဲ့ CGTN က ရိုဟင္ဂ်ာအမ်ဳိးသမီးေတြကုိ ဗမာစစ္တပ္က မုဒိမ္းက်င့္ခဲ့တဲ့အေၾကာင္း ေရးသားေဖာ္ျပထားတယ္။
ဒီသတင္းက CGTN ကုိယ္တုိင္ ေရးသားထားတဲ့ သတင္းျဖစ္တဲ့အျပင္ သူတို႔ကိုယ္တိုင္႐ိုက္ထားတဲ့   ဓါတ္ပုံ ေတြလည္းသုံးထားတယ္။ အျခားသတင္းဌာနကေန ေကာ္ပီဆြဲထားတာေတာ့ မဟုတ္ဘူး။

Link - https://news.cgtn.com/n…/3249444e77637a6333566d54/share.html


Rohingya women and girls have faced brutalities, rape and violence at the hands of the Myanmar army as part of a campaign of ethnic cleansing, Human Rights Watch said on Thursday in a report.
Three days prior, on Monday, Myanmar's army released a report denying any allegations of rape and violence by the security forces. However, the women in the refugee camps tell stories of gang rapes, assaults and unimaginable violence.
Rohingya camps are full of young women. According to some estimates, the female refugee population is over 50 percent, with many young men being killed in Myanmar, leaving many women widowed.
Sahera Khatun, 18, is in the final month of her pregnancy. She said, in August, when she was six months pregnant, she was raped by the Myanmar military in the same room as other girls.
"Soldiers entered and shut the door. They first took our ornaments and then raped us. We shouted for a very long time and then girls from our neighborhood came out to save us and then the military fled," she said.
The rape left her seriously injured. She wasn't sure if her child was still alive. Her husband and his friend carried her on a stretcher made of bamboo for 13 days to reach Bangladesh from Myanmar.
"We cannot even fathom the horrors," Khatun said, 
New refugees wait for a space to be allocated in the camp. /CGTN Photo
A clinic run by a local Bangladeshi NGO in a refugee camp has just opened. But the doctor here has a tough task; the queue is long, mostly women. 
A patient enters and says she was beaten up by the military – her story is not rare. 
There are many like her and women face acute health issues. Over the past few months, they've witnessed horrors and suffered physical abuse.
"They are living in unhygienic conditions, taking not enough nutrients," said Sushant Maula Chowdhury, senior medical officer. "Their psychological and social [conditions] there is very big imbalance and when there is some heart problem with the mental side, the body also follows it."
Dr. Sushant Maula Chowdhury sees a patient. /CGTN Photo 
Nuree Begum, 55, lost all her family members in the chaos of the violence – her husband, children and grandchildren. 
She walked through forests and swam through a river to reach Bangladesh three months ago and has given up hope of finding them.
"Military was coming from all sides," Begum said, "and there was noise of shooting and bombing."
A doctor who saw Begum said she is a classic case of depression, but she's not alone. She and thousands of other women are suffering from depression and have no will to live.
But for these women, who have lived through injustices, reports and governments are neither important nor relevant. A look at them makes it clear that recovery for the Rohingya women is a distant dream, and being alive is a miracle.
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10 November, 2017

HRW calls on world leaders to address Myanmar’s Rohingya crisis


November 9, 2017104


NEW YORK, Nov 9 (APP):Human Rights Watch (HRW), a prominent international watchdog, has called on world leaders to address the plight of Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar, who have been fleeing a military campaign against them in the Southeast Asian country since late last year.
The New York-based rights organization made the plea on Thursday as world leaders are set to gather for a series of summits in Asia from November 10 to 14.
“The Rohingya crisis is among the worst human rights catastrophes in Asia in years and demands concerted global action,” said Brad Adams, the Asia director at HRW.
“World leaders shouldn’t return home from these summits without agreeing to targeted sanctions to pressure Burma (Myanmar) to end its abuses and allow in independent observers and aid groups,” he said.”˜Take Myanmar to The Hague!”.
Adams also stressed that world leaders gathering in Asia should consider organizing a set of judicial mechanisms to hold accountable the perpetrators of the abuses in Myanmar via the United Nations General Assembly and Human Rights Council.
“The International Criminal Court was created precisely to deal with crimes against humanity like those being committed in Burma (Myanmar),” Adams said. “Members of the Security Council attending the Asia summits should be discussing referring the situation in Burma to The Hague.”
He called on leaders to ensure that their governments opposed plans for the displaced Rohingya Muslims to be returned to Myanmar by force, citing that such plans fail to meet core international standards prohibiting forced returns or returns that could result in further abuses.
Heads of governments from the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC), including the US, China, Japan, Russia, Canada, Australia, and Mexico, will be meeting in Da Nang, Vietnam, on November 10.
Leaders from the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) will be meeting in Manila, Philippines, on November 12, along with associated ASEAN side-summits with the US, the European Union, Japan, and South Korea, among others.
Most of these leaders will then take part in the annual East Asia Summit in Angeles, north of Manila, on November 13 and 14.
In a unanimously-backed statement released on Monday, the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) strongly condemned government-sanctioned violence against Myanmar’s Muslim Rohingya minority, voicing “grave concern” at the reports of human rights violations by the country’s security forces in the Rakhine State.
Myanmar’s government has been denying the widespread reports and eyewitness accounts of horrific violence by government soldiers and Buddhist mobs against the Rohingya in Rakhine. That violence began late last year and intensified in August.
Myanmar brands the Rohingya Muslims in the country “illegal immigrants” from Bangladesh. Rohingya Muslims, however, have had roots in the country that go back centuries. They are considered by the UN the “most persecuted minority group in the world.”
More than 600,000 Rohingya Muslims have so far fled the predominantly-Buddhist Myanmar to neighboring Bangladesh since August 25, when the crackdown on the Rohingya intensified in Rakhine.


http://www.app.com.pk/hrw-calls-on-world-leaders-to-address-myanmars-rohingya-crisis/


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15 October, 2017

Rohingya crisis: Sheikh Hasina at UNGA to demand more pressure on Myanmar as conditions worsen

Dhaka: Bangladesh prime minister Sheikh Hasina headed for the United Nations General Assembly on Saturday to plead for global help coping with the Rohingya crisis as conditions worsen for about 400,000 refugees who have fled a crackdown in Myanmar.
The prime minister left a day after her government summoned the Myanmar ambassador for the third time to protest over its neighbour’s actions. Her office said Hasina would demand more pressure on Myanmar during talks in New York.
Sheikh Hasina meets Rohingya Muslims at a refugee camp. AP
Bangladesh has been overwhelmed by Rohingya Muslims since violence erupted in Buddhist-dominated Myanmar’s Rakhine state on 25 August.
Conditions are worsening by the day in the border town of Cox’s Bazar where the influx has added to pressures on Rohingya camps already overwhelmed with 3,00,000 people from earlier refugee waves.
“Sheikh Hasina will raise the Rohingya issue during her speech at the UN General Assembly. She will seek immediate cessation of violence in Rakhine state in Myanmar and ask the UN secretary general to send a fact-finding missing to Rakhine,” a spokesman for the prime minister, Nazrul Islam, told AFP.
“She will also call the international community and the UN to put pressure on Myanmar for the repatriation of all the Rohingya refugees to their homeland in Myanmar,” he said.
Foreign minister AH Mahmood Ali earlier told reporters that his country faces “an unprecedented crisis” due to the influx over the past three weeks.
Backlash fears amid Myanmar tensions
“We will continue international pressure on the Myanmar government to immediately end its ongoing ethnic cleansing of the Rohingya,” he added.
Amid mounting tensions between the two, the foreign ministry on Friday summoned the Myanmar charge d’affaires in Dhaka to protest alleged violations of its airspace by Myanmar drones and helicopter.
The ministry warned that the three encroachments between 10 and 14 September could lead to “unwarranted consequences”.
The Bangladesh government has also protested to the embassy over the planting of landmines near their border, which has killed several Rohingya, and the treatment of the refugees.
UN leader Antonio Guterres has also said Myanmar’s treatment of the Rohingya could amount to ethnic cleansing.
UN agencies and other relief groups have warned that the refugee crisis could get out of control.
The World Health Organisation and UN children’s agency on Saturday launched vaccination campaigns against measles rubella and polio. They estimate that 60 percent of the new arrivals are children.
Amid monsoon rains, most of Rohingya, who spent more than a week trekking cross-country from Rakhine to reach the Bangladesh border, have found existing camps overflowing and have instead settled on muddy roadsides.
Many families do not have a shelter over their heads and refugees have been fighting for food and water deliveries.
“The needs are seemingly endless and the suffering is deepening,” said UNICEF spokeswoman Marixie Mercado.
Nur Khan Liton, a respected Bangladeshi rights activist working with the refugees in Cox’s Bazar, told AFP: “Refugees are still pouring in. But there is no attempt to bring discipline and order in the aid management.
“There is a serious lack of coordination among the government and the agencies.”
He said the Rohingya “have become victims of muggings and extortion.”
“Diarrhoea has broken out. I heard that one Rohingya boy has died of diarrhoea. The authorities must move quickly before it becomes an epidemic.”
The government has put the army in charge of ferrying foreign relief aid from airports to Cox’s Bazar. It also plans to build 14,000 shelters, which it hopes will be enough for 4,00,000 people. Each shelter can house six refugee families.
Hasina has ordered the shelters erected within 10 days, Bangladesh’s disaster management secretary Shah Kama told AFP.
The authorities have sent police reinforcements to Cox’s Bazar to protect Buddhist temples in case of a radical Muslim backlash.
Islamist protesters demanded military action against Myanmar during a rally in Dhaka on Friday.
http://www.firstpost.com/world/rohingya-crisis-sheikh-hasina-at-unga-to-demand-more-pressure-on-myanmar-as-conditions-worsen-4049735.html
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06 October, 2017

UN chief in Myanmar suppressed report predicting its shortcomings in Rakhine

UN chief in Myanmar suppressed report predicting its shortcomings in Rakhine
Renata Lok-Dessallien, head of the United Nations Country Team in Myanmar UNFPA

Meanwhile, Renata Lok-Dessallien faces fresh charges that she undermined attempts to publicly promote the rights of the Rohingya, the stateless Muslim minority

ned and then “suppressed” a report that criticised its strategy in Myanmar and warned it was ill-prepared to deal with the impending Rohingya crisis, sources have told the Guardian.
The review, written by a consultant and submitted in May, offered a highly critical analysis of the UN’s approach and said there should be “no silence on human rights”.
The report, entitled The Role of the United Nations in Rakhine state, was commissioned by Renata Lok-Dessallien, the UN resident coordinator and the organisation’s most senior figure in Myanmar. It made 16 recommendations. The report’s author Richard Horsey outlined the need for new staff positions and “frank” discussions with government, and called for the report to be widely distributed among aid agencies.
A source close to events, who asked not to be named, said the paper was “spiked” and not circulated among UN and aid agencies “because Renata Lok-Dessallien didn’t like the analysis”.
“It was given to Renata and she didn’t distribute it further because she wasn’t happy with it,” said another well-placed source.
The report, a copy of which has been obtained by the Guardian, accurately predicted a “serious deterioration” in the six months following its submission and urged the UN to undertake “serious contingency planning”.
“It is recommended that, as a matter of urgency, UN headquarters identifies ways to improve overall coherence in the UN’s system approach,” wrote independent analyst Horsey.
Security forces would be “heavy-handed and indiscriminate” in dealing with the Rohingya, said Horsey – a prediction that rang true when Rohingya militants attacked dozens of outposts on August 25, prompting a massive military crackdown.
In little more than a month, more than half a million Rohingya have fled over the border to Bangladesh amid allegations of massacres by Myanmar’s armed forces and Rohingya insurgents.
The 28-page document said its author would be expected to provide feedback to the UN’s humanitarian country team, a group consisting of UN agencies such as the World Food Programme and the UN refugee agency as well as other aid groups such as Save the Children. However, the meeting never took place.
The final report was “shared with some senior officials”, said the representative, who declined to identify the individuals concerned. Sources in Myanmar said the report was “mentioned at meetings on two occasions” before it “disappeared off the agenda”. No one was able to access the document subsequently.
Meanwhile, Renata faces fresh charges that she undermined attempts to publicly promote the rights of the Rohingya, the stateless Muslim minority. Aid workers said the UN prioritised good relations with the Myanmar government over humanitarian and human rights advocacy.
Renata, during an earlier posting in Bangladesh as the Resident Coordinator, had been accused of engineering the January 11, 2007, political changeover, when an army-backed caretaker government took over power and declared a state of emergency.
The Guardian approached Horsey, the author of the report, for comment. “The UN knew, or should have known, that the status quo in Rakhine was likely to evolve into a major crisis,” he said in an emailed response.
His report said senior UN figures in New York had sent “mixed messages” and there was no replacement special adviser to the secretary general, a high-level UN official with “diplomatic clout”, leaving the resident coordinator in an impossible position.
http://www.dhakatribune.com/world/south-asia/2017/10/05/un-chief-myanmar-suppressed-report-predicting-shortcomings-rakhine/
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PM: Bangladesh to move ahead despite Rohingya influx

PM: Bangladesh to move ahead despite Rohingya influx
Bangladesh’s Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina Wazed speaks with a reporter during the United Nations General Assembly in New York City, US September 18, 2017 Reuters

The premier said the hapless Rohingya people who fled to Bangladesh will be shifted to an island called “Bhasan Char” from Cox’s Bazar

Asserting that Bangladesh never felt scared in facing problems, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has said the country will surely make its great strides in development despite the inflow of tens of thousands of forcibly evicted “Myanmar nationals” into it.
The prime minister made the remarks while exchanging views with Awami League leaders based in the United Kingdom (UK) and other European countries on Thursday.
“We, the Bangali nation, fought and liberated the country at the call of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman… we never got scared in the face of any problem. We rather want to advance further by tackling it [problem],” she said.
Prime Minister’s Press Secretary Ihsanul Karim briefed reporters after the meeting.
Hasina said discussions with Myanmar has already begun to resolve the crisis with the recent visit of its Minister of the Office of State Counsellor Kyaw Tint Swe to Bangladesh.
“But, Bangladesh extended shelter to the victims of the forced exodus on humanitarian grounds as the people of this country always believed in humanity,” she said.
Hasina said: “We can’t throw them [the Rohingya] out into the Bay of Bengal [and] if we could feed 16 crore people, we can also feed additional five to seven lakh people at their time of distress.”
She further said: “If necessary, we’ll take one meal a day and share another with these distressed people… we’re not that rich but our heart is big enough and we stand for mankind.”
The premier said the hapless Rohingya people who fled to Bangladesh will be shifted to an island called “Bhasan Char” from Cox’s Bazar.
Hasina, who along with her younger sister Sheikh Rehana, visited the Rohingya camps in Cox’s Bazar before flying to New York to attend the 72nd session of the UN General Assembly narrated the horrifying stories she heard from the fleeing women and children from Myanmar’s Rakhine state.
She said the civil administration, army, navy and air force, BGB, police and her party volunteers were working hard to mitigate the sufferings of these people.
“Without waiting for any external assistance, we’ve made arrangement for accommodation, food and medicine,” Hasina said.
She said the international community was amazed to see the generosity of accepting such a huge number of people by the Bangladesh government.
Speaking about the Padma Bridge project, she expressed her happiness over the first installation of a span on the country’s biggest infrastructure project.
Hasina said vested quarters have tried to tarnish her and her family’s image by bringing false allegations of corruption. “But, all the allegations were proved wrong in the Canadian Federal Court,” she said.
She said Bangladesh has set up a glaring example in the world by constructing this huge bridge over such a mighty river with strong current.
On the recent flood in the country, Hasina said the deluge has caused massive damage to crops. But there is an adequate stock of food (while the government is importing rice) so that the people do not suffer, she added.
She also mentioned the “destruction and mindless atrocities perpetrated by the BNP-Jamaat clique” in 2013, 2014 and 2015.
She urged the expatriate leaders of Awami League and its associate bodies to work together for the victory of the party in the next general elections.
She also called upon them to further brighten the country’s image abroad through their works.
Awami League Central Office Secretary Dr Abdus Sobhan Golap, president of the UK chapter of Awami League Sultan Mahmud Sharif, Vice-President Jalaluddin Ahmed, General Secretary Syed Sajedur Rahman and Joint Secretary Anwaruzzaman Chowdhury, among others, were present during the discussion.
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