A new report exposes Myanmar's 'Extensive and Systematic Preparations' for Rohingya Atrocities

The Rohingya are a persecuted and mostly stateless Muslim minority from Rakhine state in western Myanmar, a predominantly Buddhist country. After an insurgent group known as the Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (ARSA) attacked state security forces on Aug. 25, 2017, the Myanmar military carried out brutal reprisals against Rohingya civilians characterized by murder, rape and arson. The crackdown forced more than 700,000 Rohingya to flee across the border into neighboring Bangladesh.

The campaign to expel them was not merely a response to the insurgent attack, as the dominant narrative holds, but that it was premeditated. The August ARSA attack was the second of its kind; the group’s first fatal ambush was carried out in October 2016, which the Myanmar military met with a brutal campaign of rape and extrajudicial killing that forced tens of thousands to flee.

Systematic preparations include the collection sharp or blunt objects from Rohingya civilians, training and arming local non-Rohingya cummunities, tearing down fencing and other structures around Rohingya homes, deliberately depriving Rohingya of food and life-saving aid to weaken them prior to attacks, and deploying unnecessarily high numbers of state security forces to northern Rakhine state.

Charitable Foundation Winston Churchill collects funds for humanitarian assistance to people in Myanmar. Donate

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