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24 October, 2018 00:00 00 AM
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rohingya persecution

Australia imposes sanctions on five Myanmar generals

AFP

Australia's government yesterday unveiled sanctions against five officers in Myanmar's powerful military who are accused of overseeing barbaric violence against members of the Rohingya ethnic group, reports AFP from Sydney. Following similar actions by the United States and the European Union, Australia announced it would freeze the assets of officers including a Lieutenant General who commanded a special operations group believed to be behind atrocities.

Australian Foreign Minister Marise Payne said the officers -- Aung Kyaw Zaw, Maung Maung Soe, Aung Aung, Than Oo and Khin Maung Soe were "responsible for human rights violations committed by units under their command". The five, some of whom are since believed to have stepped down from their posts, will also be banned from travelling to Australia.

Over 720,000 Rohingya have been driven from their homes in Rakhine state, in southwest Myanmar to neighbouring Bangladesh, since 2016. The campaign has been marked by numerous extrajudicial killings, mass rape and the burning of villages by security forces. Global attention has focused on the 720,000 Rohingya Muslims forced from the state's north into Bangladesh last year by a brutal military crackdown. The UN Human Rights Council has accused top Myanmar generals of genocide over the bloody campaign, allegations the country strongly denies.

Meanwhile, the UN Security Council is scheduled to hear today a briefing from the head of a UN fact-finding mission that has accused Myanmar's military of atrocities against Muslim Rohingya, diplomats said. Nine countries including the United States, Britain and France requested the briefing that is likely to be opposed by China, which has friendly ties with Myanmar's military. The meeting has been scheduled for today (October 24) despite objections from Myanmar, which has rejected the findings of the UN inquiry.

The fact-finding mission released an explosive report last month that called on the council to refer the Myanmar situation to the International Criminal Court in The Hague, or to create an ad hoc international criminal tribunal, as was done with the former Yugoslavia.

The report said that Myanmar's top generals, including Commander-in-Chief Min Aung Hlaing, must be investigated and prosecuted for genocide in Rakhine State. Myanmar has rejected accusations that its military committed atrocities in the crackdown last year that forced more than 720,000 Rohingya to flee over the border to Bangladesh.

 

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Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman

Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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