Seven countries have called on the UN Security Council to convene a meeting to discuss the ongoing atrocities against Rohingya
Muslims in Myanmar
According to a request seen by AFP on Friday, France, Britain, the US, Egypt, Kazakhstan, Senegal and Sweden asked UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres to brief the Security Council on Myanmar’s military campaign against Rohingya Muslims in Rakhine state.
The Security Council is holding consultations to set a time for the meeting, the Ethiopian presidency of the council said.
Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar’s Rakhine have been subject to systematic persecution and violence at the hands of the military and Buddhist mobs for decades.
The religious minority has been subject to an escalated campaign of horrific violence since late last year, when the military laid siege to Rakhine. There have been widespread reports and eyewitness accounts of killings, raping, indiscriminate shootings at fleeing civilians, and the burning down of houses.
The Myanmar government claims it is fighting militants in the area, but the UN says the situation is better described as the “ethnic cleansing” of the Rohingya Muslims, whom the government refuses to recognize as citizens despite the fact that the 1.1-million-strong population has been living in the country for generations.
The photo shows makeshift shelters of Rohingya Muslims at a refugee camp near the Bangladeshi town of Ukhia on September 22, 2017. (Photo by AFP)
Over the past month, nearly 430,000 Rohingya have fled from a brutal army-led crackdown across the border in Rakhine state. The recent exodus of Rohingya has brought the number of refugees from Rakhine living in Bangladesh to over 800,000.
The government forces in Myanmar do not even spare the fleeing Rohingya refugees. Recent reports by Amnesty International and Bangladeshi officials say the military plants landmines on the path of those trying to cross into Bangladesh, causing them to sustain serious wounds or lose their limbs.
The violence has prompted an international outcry, and several world leaders, including French President Emmanuel Macron, have described it as “genocide.”