“What’s happening in Myanmar can be dressed up as counter-insurgency campaign, but in design and purpose, it’s a pogrom and has popular support”; these words by Francis Wade, the author of a book about violence against the Rohingya, clearly shows the emergent condition in Myanmar’s western state.
Genocide of Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar is not unprecedented. The central government has never recognized these people as citizens of Myanmar and did whatever it could to expel them from the country. Genocide heightened with intensified massacre in 2012 and 2015 lingering on to the present.
Thousands of people fled their homes to take refuge to Bangladesh. Observers believe the number of displaced people is likely to increase. The Burmese military said 400 militants had been killed in clashes with their forces.
Horrific accounts of violence and brutality by Burmese soldiers has been recounted by people who survived the massacre by fleeting to Bangladesh. Sultan Ahmed, 27, is one of these who told the Fortify Rights, a charity working in the area, “Some people were beheaded, and many were cut. We were in the house hiding when [armed residents from a neighboring village] were beheading people.”
Matthew Smith, head of Fortify Rights, asserted that “We can’t stress enough the urgency of the situation. The Myanmar authorities are failing to protect civilians and save lives. International pressure is critically needed.”
Human Rights Watch announced that satellite imagery shows more than 700 buildings in only one village to have been fully burnt.
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