Burma Briefing

Summary
The Government of Myanmar has been engaged in a series of military campaigns against minorities. The most notable is their continued persecution of the Rohingya which has been described by the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein, as seeming like “a textbook example of ethnic cleansing”. At the same time the Myanmar Military has continued its six year long campaign against Christian minorities in the Kachin and Shan region. In all cases, the military campaign are hallmarked by religious persecution; arbitrary arrest, murder and rape as a weapon of war against civilian populations.

In light of the UN Security Council’s failure to agree on a resolution regarding Myanmar's campaign against the Rohingya, it is imperative that the EU Ministers take concrete actions when they meet on Monday November 13th to ensure that human rights violations are not normalised in the country and do not spread further throughout the country and to guarantee all perpetrators are held to account. These messages should also be repeated to the government of Myanmar when EU Heads of State meet those of Asian countries at the ASEM summit on 21-22 November in Naypyidaw.

While EU Ministers included positive steps when they met on 16 October, far greater commitments are needed in response to the gross human rights violations. The EU can impose stricter sanctions and must champion the recent UN Security Council Presidential Statement from 6 November, which made clear that the situation on the ground would be reviewed within 30 days. In order to secure the much urgently needed progress on the ground as set out now by both the UN Security Council, and the Foreign Affairs Council, the EU should call for transparent investigations into allegations of human rights abuses and violations and to allow for unhindered access for international humanitarian organisations to all parts of Myanmar. The events that transpired in Rakhine State since August 25th of this year have alarmed the international community, yet the response and reaction has been underwhelming. The UN has the ability to lead the way to change this response, working in tandem with the EU, including the role of European members of the UN Security Council.

Rakhine State – Persecution of the Indigenous Rohingya
At the time of writing, more than half of the Rohingya population has been displaced into Bangladesh by the Myanmar Military’s campaign. Those remaining have been left to starve with severe and intentional aid cuts while under attack by proxy vigilantes. Among those displaced are 4,000 unaccompanied children and 2,000 children are facing severe acute malnutrition. Of the over 600,000 displaced many are considered extremely vulnerable and reports have already emerged of women and girls trafficked into prostitution. There is reasonable fear others will be trafficked into forced labor as well as they attempt to escape and survive. The vast number of refugees themselves are so overwhelming that aid agencies are struggling to accommodate the needs of all of them, while reports of cholera outbreaks are becoming more common. Bangladesh has had to establish an entirely new region for to house all of them, and the cost to the international community has been enormous.

The World is now facing a humanitarian disaster, which might have been prevented through addressing concerns regarding the Burmese Military sooner. These acts cannot be tolerated by any civilized country and any underwhelming response will effectively normalize them. There is a very real risk that the violence will not simply end with the Rohingya, but will continue elsewhere in the country, as anti-Muslim propaganda and ultra-nationalism continue in concert with discriminatory policies countrywide. What is often seen as an isolated social problem in Rakhine State is in fact part of a countrywide pattern based on discriminatory laws and propaganda that will not end if not addressed.

These concerns have precedent; anti-Muslim riots have resulted in several deaths and mass displacement in the past five years, with a recent incident just this past summer resulting in Muslim properties being attacked. On top of this, policies restricting the movement of Muslims have increased significantly in the south of the country. Similarly, there has been an increase in scrutiny and discriminatory practices against Burmese Muslims registering their citizenship, which has restricted movement and education and resulted in the detention of Muslims for moving through the country as would be legal for any Buddhist resident. The xenophobia and Islamophobia which has caused so much devastation and death in Rakhine State is not limited to the region, but is growing throughout the country in a systematic and orchestrated way, which will only worsen if not addressed.

<Shan & Kachin States - Persecution of Christian Minorities
The conflict in Kachin and Shan States continues unabated. For six years the civilian population has been subject to arbitrary arrests, murder, rape, pillaging and an orchestrated campaign of blocking food and medicine to civilians displaced in territory considered to be under control of rebel forces. The world has done far too little as school teachers were murdered, children were forced to serve as porters, Christian pastors were arbitrarily detained and rape has been used as a weapon of war.

Conclusion
While the most recent meeting of the EU Ministers included positive steps, far greater action is needed in response to the gross human rights violations throughout Myanmar. Burma Human Rights Network makes the following recommendations:

  • Support the establishment of a UN mandated global Arms Embargo
  • Ban visas for members of the Burmese Military seeking to enter the EU
  • End all cooperative ventures with the Burmese Military, including training
  • Support sanctioning of all resources from Burma connected to conflicts, specifically jade and other gems and minerals used in jewelry, timber and fossil fuels.
  • Support a ban on investment in any company tied to the Burmese Military or cronies known to be connected to and benefiting from military operations
  • Ban all investment in Rakhine State’s Special Economic Zones
  • Support the referral of the above the events detailed above to the International Criminal Court
  • Reevaluate cooperation and support of the Burmese Government with consideration to its role in the events detailed above.

 

Media Enquiries
Please Contact

Kyaw Win
Executive Director
Burma Human Rights Network (BHRN)
E:This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
T: +44(0) 740 345 2378


BHRN BURMA BRIEFING PDF

Download (173.44 KB)


Slide thumbnail
Slide thumbnail
Slide thumbnail
Slide thumbnail
Slide thumbnail

10 February, 2018

Slide thumbnail

February 07 2018, 21:44
MONOLOGUE FOR TWO:
HUMAN RIGHTS ACTIVIST
KYAW WIN

Slide thumbnail
Slide thumbnail
Slide thumbnail
Slide thumbnail
Slide thumbnail
Slide thumbnail
Slide thumbnail
Slide thumbnail
Slide thumbnail
Slide thumbnail

Events

  • The ROHINGYA crisis : 6 Months on

    The ROHINGYA crisis : 6 Months on

  • Religious Intolerance in Burma

    Religious Intolerance in Burma

  • Human Rights and Violence In Regional ASEAN

    Human Rights and Violence In Regional ASEAN

  • PERSECUTION OF MUSLIMS IN BURMA

    PERSECUTION OF MUSLIMS IN BURMA

World News About Burma

  • Silently, Burma is now expelling Rohingyas from its detention camps
  • Myanmar orders Rohingya to leave tense border zone
  • As the monsoons approach, the Rohingya refugees are desperate for hope
  • Humanitarian access worsening in Myanmar: UN official
  • Too many are looking away from Burma’s ethnic cleansing campaign
  • Amal Clooney to represent two Reuters journalists detained in Myanm
  • Burmese soldiers accused of escalating violence against northern minorities
  • U.N. chief 'shocked' by top Myanmar general's comments on Rohingya
  • Lawmakers call for pressure on Myanmar over Pyongyang ties
  • Australia condemns Myanmar violence and says offenders 'must be held to account'
  • UN genocide adviser: Indications Myanmar cleansing Rohingyas
  • Myanmar urged not to drag out case against Reuters reporters
  • Myanmar building military bases over Rohingya villages: Amnesty
  • I Saw a Genocide in Slow Motion
  • Former Rohingya MP, Aung Zaw Win, arrested in Myanmar
  • Rohingya demand help as Rakhine atrocities continue
  • The Genocide the U.S. Didn’t See Coming
  • MP calls for Aung San Suu Kyi to be stripped of Freedom of Dundee
  • Myanmar must take back Rohingyas with dignity: Lisa Curtis
  • Lisa Curtis: US will work towards the safe return of Rohingya
  • Silently, Burma is now expelling Rohingyas from its detention camps

    Over 700,000 Rohingya have been forcibly expelled from their ancestral lands in that country by a volatile mix of military aggression and religious persecution, with the country's government largely turning a blind eye or worse.

    State-sponsored violence has led to a massive exodus of the Rohingya from the country, a great human wave of refugees who have no choice but to flee for their lives before the onslaught . . . .

    www.washingtonexaminer.com


  • Myanmar orders Rohingya to leave tense border zone

    TOMBRU, Bangladesh: Myanmar security forces have resumed loudspeaker broadcasts near its border with Bangladesh ordering Rohingya Muslims to immediately leave a strip of no-man's land between the two countries, refugees said on Sunday (May 20).

    Around 6,000 refugees from the persecuted minority have been camping on the narrow stretch of land since fleeing a brutal military crackdown in Myanmar's west last August . . . .

    www.channelnewsasia.com


  • As the monsoons approach, the Rohingya refugees are desperate for hope

    Exhausted parents dragging toddlers through water and mud, babies carried in the arms of siblings little older than themselves, and horrifyingly tiny graves of children who did not survive the journey.

    This is the confronting scene we witnessed in January at the Rohingya refugee settlements surrounding Cox’s Bazar on our visit to South-East Bangladesh as co-chairs of the parliamentary friends of Unicef.. . . .

    www.theguardian.com


  • Humanitarian access worsening in Myanmar: UN official

    Ursula Mueller, assistant secretary-general for humanitarian affairs and deputy emergency relief coordinator, concluded her six-day mission to the country on Sunday. She visited several conflict-torn ethnic areas of Myanmar including western Rakhine state, northern Kachin state and northeastern Shan state.

    “When you cut that humanitarian lifeline, there is a very real human impact,” she said. . . .

    www.aa.com.tr


  • Too many are looking away from Burma’s ethnic cleansing campaign

    The writers insist that Buddhists must speak out about atrocities against the Rohingya, no matter how painful. “Like many around the world, we have been horrified by reports of widespread atrocities committed by Myanmar security forces ,” the letter says. “These have included mass rape, arson, enforced disappearances and extrajudicial killings that had included the sadistic murder and torture of young Rohingya children and infants . . .

    www.washingtonpost.com


  • Amal Clooney to represent two Reuters journalists detained in Myanm

    Prominent human rights lawyer Amal Clooney has joined the legal team representing two Reuters journalists detained in Myanmar. A court in Yangon has been holding preliminary hearings since January to decide whether Wa Lone, 31, and Kyaw Soe Oo, 28, will be charged under the colonial-era Officials Secrets Act, which carries a maximum penalty of 14 years in prison . . .

    www.reuters.com


  • Burmese soldiers accused of escalating violence against northern minorities

    Human rights atrocities and potential war crimes have been stepped up against other Burmese minorities while the world has been distracted by the ethnic cleansing of Rohingya Muslims, a new United Nations report has revealed . . .

    www.telegraph.co.uk


  • U.N. chief 'shocked' by top Myanmar general's comments on Rohingya

    U.N. chief Guterres said in a statement on Monday he was “shocked” at the comments, and urged “all leaders in Myanmar to take a unified stance against incitement to hatred and to promote communal harmony”. . .

    www.reuters.com


  • Lawmakers call for pressure on Myanmar over Pyongyang ties

    WASHINGTON >> The Trump administration has slapped sanctions on companies across the globe to punish illicit trade with nuclear-armed North Korea, yet Myanmar, which is suspected of acquiring ballistic missile systems from the pariah state, has escaped the full force of the “maximum pressure” campaign . . .

    www.news-herald.com


  • Australia condemns Myanmar violence and says offenders 'must be held to account'

    Australia has told Myanmar that international observers must be allowed into the isolated Rakhine state to monitor the situation of Rohingya still living there, and to supervise the return of any of those who have fled and wish to come back. . .

    www.theguardian.com


  • UN genocide adviser: Indications Myanmar cleansing Rohingyas

    UNITED NATIONS — The U.N. adviser on preventing genocide said Tuesday that all information he has received indicates the Myanmar government intended to get rid of Rohingya Muslims in Rakhine state and possibly even destroy them “which, if proven, would constitute the crime of genocide”. . .

    www.washingtonpost.com


  • Myanmar urged not to drag out case against Reuters reporters

    YANGON (Reuters) - Some international observers urged Myanmar on Wednesday not to drag out legal proceedings against two Reuters journalists, as they appeared in court for the 10th time since they were arrested in December and accused of possessing secret government papers . . .

    uk.reuters.com


  • Myanmar building military bases over Rohingya villages: Amnesty

    Security forces have bulldozed houses and started constructing at least three new security facilities in Myanmar's western Rakhine state, said Amnesty International's Remaking Rakhine State report, which was published on Monday . . .

    www.aljazeera.com


  • I Saw a Genocide in Slow Motion

    Sometimes Myanmar uses guns and machetes for ethnic cleansing, and that’s how Sono Wara earlier lost her mother and sister. But it also kills more subtly and secretly by regularly denying medical care and blocking humanitarian aid to Rohingya, and that’s why her twins are gone . . .

    www.nytimes.com


  • Former Rohingya MP, Aung Zaw Win, arrested in Myanmar

    Aung Zaw Win, a major property tycoon and former MP for the Union Solidarity and Development party, was arrested at Yangon international airport on Wednesday as he was about to leave on a business trip to Bangkok . . .

    www.theguardian.com


  • Rohingya demand help as Rakhine atrocities continue

    MORE THAN 100 women were gang-raped. One was raped in front of people she loved and later killed. Even a woman eight months’ pregnant was raped.

    Sultana Razia, a Rohingya teacher from Chittagong, exposed such atrocities perpetrated against her . . .

    www.nationmultimedia.com


  • The Genocide the U.S. Didn’t See Coming

    Barack Obama was determined to open up to Myanmar. Now the country’s military is slaughtering its most vulnerable ethnic group. Could the United States have prevented it? . . .

    By NAHAL TOOSI March/April 2018

    www.politico.com



  • MP calls for Aung San Suu Kyi to be stripped of Freedom of Dundee

    Dundee West MP Chris Law has said it is time for Myanmar leader Aun San Suu Kyi to be stripped of the freedom of the city over her country’s treatment of Rohingya Muslims . . .

    Mr Law and other members of the International Development Committee were . . .

    www.thecourier.co.uk

  • Myanmar must take back Rohingyas with dignity: Lisa Curtis

    Myanmar has to take back the Rohingya refugees from Bangladesh after ensuring their security and dignity, Deputy Assistant to US President Donald Trump Lisa Curtis says on March 3, 2018. In the Reuters file photo, Rohingya refugee children fly improvised kites at Kutupalong refugee camp near Cox's Bazar . . .

    www.thedailystar.net
  • Lisa Curtis: US will work towards the safe return of Rohingya

    Lisa Curtis, deputy assistant to US President Donald Trump and senior director for South and Central Asia at the National Security Council at the White House, has lauded Bangladesh for its extensive humanitarian support to the persecuted Rohingya refugees from strife-torn Rakhine state of Myanmar . . .

    www.dhakatribune.com

Facebook