After a year-long investigation, United Nations experts found that Myanmar’s army commander and other top generals are culpable for genocide against Rohingya Muslims.
The experts further pin the generals for crimes against humanity targeting other ethnic minorities.
The UN panel considers that these errant generals should face trial in an international court.
According to a United Nations Fact Finding Mission on Myanmar, their 18-page report has details of military campaigns involving atrocities that “undoubtedly amount to the gravest crimes under international law.”
However, Myanmar has rejected allegations of widespread atrocities, asserting that its security forces were simply responding to attacks by Rohingya militants on Myanmar police posts and an army station on Aug. 25 last year.
The UN panel leveled the most serious charge, genocide, over the ferocious campaign unleashed by the Buddhist-majority security forces against Rohingya Muslims a year ago. That campaign, in the state of Rakhine, sent more than 700,000 fleeing across the border to Bangladesh.
Also the panel describes the Rakhine operations as a “foreseeable and planned catastrophe” building on decades of oppression of Rohingya Muslims.
Myanmar has long falsely classified the Rohingya as “Bengali” immigrants from Bangladesh, denying them citizenship and making them vulnerable to attack, including previous assaults in 2012 and 2016.
The panel found evidence of genocidal intent in the operation, citing the prevailing rhetoric of hate directed at the Rohingya and statements by military commanders as well as “the level of organization indicating a plan for destruction; and the extreme scale and brutality of the violence.”