The United Nations Human Rights Council has agreed to send an international fact-finding mission to investigate widespread allegations of killings, rape, and torture by Myanmar armed forces against Rohingya ethnic minority in Arakan/Rakhine state.
Arakan Rohingya Union (ARU) and the European Rohingya Council (ERC) warmly welcome the HRC Resolution calling for sending an international fact-finding mission to Arakan to investigate crimes against humanity committed by the Government of Myanmar armed forces (combinations of army, BGP personnel, and township police) accompanied by local government officials.
Myanmar ambassador Htin Lynn, speaking before the decision was taken by consensus, rejected the move as “not acceptable”. Myanmar’s national commission had just interviewed alleged victims who fled to Bangladesh and would issue its findings by August, he said. ARU and ERC express serious concerns about the integrity of the investigation in Arakan launched by the Government of Myanmar. There is no legitimacy of such an investigation by the Government of Myanmar as the process is not transparent and it has already demonstrated partiality during the interview with several witnesses.
The U.N. report issued earlier is fully credible based on interviews with 220 Rohingya among 75,000 who have fled to Bangladesh since October. The report has provided details of how Myanmar’s security forces have committed mass killings, and gang rapes of Rohingya in a campaign that is amounts to crimes against humanity and ethnic cleansing.
Myanmar’s Lynn, referring to the resolution, said: “Such kind of action is not acceptable to Myanmar as it not in harmony with the situation on the ground and our national circumstances. Let the Myanmar people choose the best and the most effective course of action to address the challenges in Myanmar”.
Rohingya people welcome this “landmark decision” by the 47-member forum. However, it is regretting that it is not tantamount to not a full international Commission of Inquiry, but it is a significant step in right direction.
ARU and ERC call on the Government of Myanmar to abandon its common practice of defiance at the international stage, cooperate with the UN, and allow the international fact-finding mission to Arakan.
ARU and ERC demand the Government of Myanmar to stop the persecution policy against Rohingya people, stop the ill-devised verification (NVC) campaign, restore the full citizenship of Rohingya ethnic minority through reinstating their National Registration Certificate (NRC), permanently cease all the basic human right violations against Rohingya, and repatriate all the IDPs from camps in Arakan and refugees from camps in South and Southeast Asia to their original homes in Arakan state.