The European Rohingya Council welcomes the report and recommendations of the Independent International Fact-Finding Mission on Myanmar (IIFFMM) released August 27, 2018.
ERC acknowledges the IIFFMM´s team hard work in independently and impartially investigating what has happened to the Rohingya, Kachin and Shan people in Myanmar.
We agree with IIFFMM´s findings, based on hundreds of eyewitness interviews, satellite imagery, photographs and videos that Myanmar Military and security forces committed Genocide against Rohingya, Crimes against humanity and war crimes against Kachin, Rohingya and Shan.
We also strongly agree with the IIFFMM findings that Aung Sang Suu Kyi, “has not used her de facto position as Head of Government, nor her moral authority, to stem or prevent the unfolding events in Rakhine.”
ERC supports the IIFFMM call for the case to be referred to the International Criminal Court (ICC) or the establishment of a special independent body by the UN to conduct an investigation in support of war crimes and genocide prosecutions.
ERC is deeply concerned if the government of Myanmar will take the report of the mission seriously and comply with the recommendations put forward by IIFFMM.
With experience from the past on Myanmar´s behaviour towards Rohingya and other persecuted ethnic minorities, it is highly unlikely that the government will cooperate with the UN and the international community. Myanmar’s Permanent Representative to the UN, U Hau Do Suan has already told BBC: “As we did not accept the idea of a fact-finding mission from the beginning, we reject their report.” After the release of report on August 27, the Myanmar Security forces and Rakhine vigilantes have already been threatening the Rohingya to leave their homes and the ancestral land in Buthidaung north and Maungdaw south as retaliation.
There are still less than half a million Rohingya remaining in Arakan/Rakhine State whose lives are at greater risk now. ERC fears that there will be more exodus of Rohingya from Arakan in the coming days.
The international community has the responsibility to act in ensuring justice and accountability.
Now based on the IIFFMM’s report, it becomes the legal and moral obligation of UNGA, UNSC, EU, U.S and all UN member states to immediately discharge their responsibilities to protect the remaining Rohingya in Rakhine State and act on the proposed recommendations as a matter of urgency.
Failing to do so will allow Myanmar Armed Forces to enjoy impunity and would send a dangerous message not only to Myanmar’s military, but to Genocide perpetrators worldwide to freely commit such atrocities now and again in the future.
For more information:
Dr. Anita Schug
The European Rohingya Council