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UN report outlines ‘devastating cruelty’ against Rohingya population in Myanmar

A UN report issued on Friday stated that the widespread human rights violations perpetrated by Myanmar’s security forces against the Rohingya population is likely to constitute crimes against humanity.

The report released by the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights was based on interviews with those who fled Myanmar in early October. According to the UN News Centre, the report documented “mass gang-rape, killings, including of babies and young children, brutal beatings, disappearances and other serious human rights violations by the country's security forces.”

“The devastating cruelty to which these Rohingya children have been subjected is unbearable – what kind of hatred could make a man stab a baby crying out for his mother's milk. And for the mother to witness this murder while she is being gang-raped by the very security forces who should be protecting her,” said UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein.

“What kind of 'clearance operation' is this? What national security goals could possibly be served by this?” he further added.

Zeid called on the international community for a robust mechanism to address such violence. “The Government of Myanmar must immediately halt these grave human rights violations against its own people, instead of continuing to deny they have occurred, and accepts the responsibility to ensure that victims have access to justice, reparations and safety.”

Violence, systemic discrimination and policies of exclusion have been undertaken against the Rohingya population in the Rakhine state for decades.