Egypt condemns human rights violations against Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar

Henrietta Brewer
December 6, 2017

Geneva: The UN rights chief on Tuesday for a fresh global investigation into Myanmar's abuses against its Rohingya Muslim minority, warning of possible "elements of genocide".

Addressing a UN Human Rights Council session, Youssef urged the world countries to provide protection for the Rohingya people and help them return to their homes in Myanmar.

The top court had earlier chose to give a detailed and holistic hearing on the government's decision to deport Rohingya Muslims to Myanmar.

Zeid slammed "widespread, systematic and shockingly brutal" attacks against the Rohingya, as well as policies that had dehumanized and segregated the minority, and left it wallowing in statelessness for decades.

Steve Gumaer Rohingya

Shahriar Alam, Bangladesh's junior foreign affairs minister, told the session in Geneva that his country was hosting almost one million "Myanmar nationals" following executions and rapes. But rights groups say the conditions are not in place to ensure safe, voluntary and dignified returns.

Myanmar's civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi has been the target of global vitriol for a perceived failure to stand up for the stateless minority.

But he says the many decades of violations against the Rohingya in Myanmar's Rakhine state and the deliberate efforts to erase its ethnic identity are very troubling.

Mainly Buddhist Myanmar denies the Muslim Rohingya are its citizens and considers them foreigners.

"We express our gravest concern with recent events in Myanmar's Rakhine state and the violent, traumatic abuses Rohingya and other communities have endured".

But Myanmar's refusal to acknowledge the Rohingya "remains a stumbling block" for any negotiations, Bangladesh's ambassador said on Monday.

He cited a long list of atrocities Rohingya who have fled to Bangladesh say they have suffered, describing them as "acts of appalling barbarity".

Myanmar does not accept its jurisdiction, meaning the Security Council's unanimous support would be needed to force an investigation.

But Myanmar has refused to cooperate and has blocked access to the team of investigators, who have begun their work outside the country.

Yet, he added, prosecutions for alleged acts of violence against them, including sexual violence - whether committed by security forces or civilians - appeared to be extremely rare.

Marzuki Darusman, head of the independent global fact-finding mission, said by video from Malaysia: "We will go where the evidence leads us".

More than 600,000 refugees have crossed the border from Myanmar since late August, Bangladesh's United Nations ambassador said, joining the 300,000 or so which had fled earlier outbreaks of violence.

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