Rohingya issue: UN to send fact-finding mission to Myanmar

Geneva [Switzerland], Mar. 24 : The United Nations Human Rights Council on Friday decided to send an independent international fact-finding mission to Myanmar to investigate alleged human rights violations in the country, against the ethnic Rohingya Muslims in particular.

According to Anadolu news agency, the mission will establish "the facts and circumstances" of the alleged "violations by military and security forces, and abuses, in Myanmar, in particular in Rakhine State, including but not limited to arbitrary detention, torture and inhuman treatment, rape and other forms of sexual violence, extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary killings, enforced disappearance, forced displacement and unlawful destruction of property, with a view to ensuring full accountability for perpetrators".

The Council also called upon Myanmar authorities "to eliminate statelessness and the systematic and institutionalized discrimination against members of ethnic and religious minorities, including the root causes of discrimination, in particular relating to the Rohingya minority." Earlier on March 13, the UN Special Rapporteur Yanghee Lee called for "prompt, thorough, independent and impartial investigations" into the killings and other serious human rights violations in Myanmar.

The fresh wave of violence and subsequent reprisals against the civilian population began last year mid October after insurgents, believed to be mostly from the Rohingya minority, attacked Myanmar border posts on October 9, killing nine police officers there.

The Rohingya advocacy groups claim that not dozens but hundreds of Rohingya - described by the UN as among the most persecuted groups worldwide - were killed in the military operations in an area which has been closed to aid agencies and independent journalists.

The Myanmar Government has been accused of being unwilling to open the area to international observers, leaving at least two separate UN agencies without access.

Source: ANI