AOCE calls on the international community to hold perpetrators accountable.
Pursuing its efforts to shed light on the world's largest humanitarian crisis, Al-Azhar Observatory for Combating Extremism (AOCE) takes serious note of the U.N. human rights report on Myanmar’s growing restrictions on life-saving aid for the Rohingya Muslims. These restrictions may amount to war crimes such as degrading treatment, starvation, and collective punishment, according to the UN report.
The report by the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, released on Friday, says “Urgent steps are needed to meet people's fundamental needs and rights in Myanmar”, adding, “Myanmar soldiers have targeted medical facilities, burnt food stores, destroyed water wells and even killed a group of three displaced people for trying to return to their village and grow food. Up to 40 aid workers have been killed in the country since February 2021.” The report further stressed that “In the context of armed conflicts, the intentional obstruction or denial of humanitarian assistance may constitute war crimes such as willful killing, torture and other degrading treatment, starvation, and collective punishment”.
On its part, the Myanmar ruling junta has denied targeting civilians, claiming that its operations are against “terrorists” who seek to destabilize the country.
Overall, the U.N. report said at least 3452 people had died at the hands of the military and its affiliates, and 21,807 individuals had been arrested since the military takeover through to April 2023. U.N. human rights spokesperson Ravina Shamdasani said, “Aid providers are consistently exposed to risks of arrest, harassment or other mistreatment, or even death.”
The AOCE has always warned, and still warns, about the deterioration of the humanitarian situation in Myanmar, calling on all relevant international institutions to find effective solutions to one of the most serious humanitarian crises in our current era, as nearly one million Rohingya persons suffer from poor health, food, and security conditions in refugee camps.
Therefore, the AOCE renews its call to all international bodies and institutions to cooperate to end to this tragedy and bring perpetrators of violence in Myanmar to account.