UN Suspects 'Acts of Genocide' Committed against Rohingya in Myanmar


Myanmar's "ethnic cleansing" of Rohingya Muslims was continuing, a senior United Nations human rights official said on Tuesday, more than six months after insurgent attacks sparked a security response that has driven almost 700,000 people into Bangladesh. Myanmar's government denies such abuses and announced in January that it was ready to accept the refugees back.

Earlier this year in February, the Centre had responded to a plea which alleged that Rohingya refugees who wanted to enter India after fleeing persecution in Myanmar were being "pushed back" at the border by the BSF in violation of the United Nations principle of non-refoulement.

The Rohingya immigrants, who fled to India after violence in the Western Rakhine state of Myanmar, have settled in Jammu, Hyderabad, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Delhi-NCR and Rajasthan.

Bangladesh insists the repatriation process will go ahead, last month submitting to Myanmar the names of 8,000 refugees expected to return to Rakhine, where the Muslim minority has been persecuted for generations.

Gilmour spoke to refugees who recounted abductions by security forces and at least one apparent death of a Rohingya man in custody in February, the statement said. The UN envoy said it was "inconceivable" for any Rohingya to return to Rakhine state in the near future in a "safe, dignified and sustainable" way.

The Supreme Court on Tuesday granted more time to the Centre to file an affidavit in the Rohingya refugees case, where it argued that India did not want to become the world's refugee capital.

"The conversation now must focus on stopping the violence in Rakhine state, ensuring accountability for the perpetrators, and the need for Myanmar to create conditions for return", said Gilmour.

Rohingya who sought shelter in Bangladesh have reported rape, killings and arson by security forces.

"UNHCR is urging the authorities to ensure the safety of the group now in no man's land", UNHCR spokeswoman Vivian Tan said Tuesday. "We've asked Myanmar for humanitarian access in order to help people like them and others affected by the recent violence".

"Tragically 10 refugees have been killed by frightened elephants inside the settlements". Reuters uncovered the massacre and has pieced together how it unfolded.