Condemns Burmese (Myanmar) Military for Continued Killings, Bombings &War Crimes in Arakan State, Burma & Pleads the International Community to Intervene in Arakan State.
Date: March 16, 2020 Letter No. 02/2020
Burmese (Myanmar) military has continued targeting civilians in Arakan State. On March 13, 2020, at least three civilians were killed and as many as 30 people wounded when troops from Burmese army launched an attack on Mrauk-U and Kyauktaw townships in northern Rakhine state. Soldiers from Burmese army entered the villages and fired light arms and mortars on several villages, a hospital, and a refugee camp where the internally displaced persons (IDPs) were residing. Three residents Ma Thein Saw (18), Maung Kyaw Bu (23) and U Nyunt Hla (56) of Tharsi village in Kyauktaw were killed in the attack, and around 30 people—including at least four children—were injured. At least fourteen houses were burnt and destroyed due to the artillery fire. The Burmese military is now using helicopter gunships and bomber airplanes to attack on civilian villages and towns: burning and destroying them.
Since December 2018, the Burmese military has been killing, arresting, and torturing civilians, as well as ransacking homes and villages, shooting into villages and towns, shelling heavy artilleries that are destroying religious buildings and historic sites, and committing war crimes that amount to genocide. The Burmese government has shut down internet in most of Arakan State, blocking the access of information to and from the public. Local and international reporters have been prohibited from covering the conflict areas so that the Burmese government can coverup the war crimes and human rights violations being committed by Burmese military. More than 100 people have been killed by Burmese military, and several hundreds have been arrested and tortured. More have also been killed in the Burmese military’s detention centers. There are more than 100,000 internationally displaced people (IDPs) in Arakan State now, however the Burmese government has been ignoring the displaced refugees and even blocking the local and international aid organization.
The Arakan American Community (AAC) condemns Burmese military and the government for continued and broaden killing of civilian including children, committing war crimes and genocide in Arakan State and strongly urges the United Nations and the international communities the following:
1. Stop all military action in Arakan State and form an independent commission to investigate the war crimes and bring justice to the victims of the war crimes.
2. Restore internet and all communications services to the public in Arakan State.
3. Provide humanitarian aid to the displaced civilians and allow INGOs and the Humanitarian Organizations full access to the displaced refugees.
4. Declare northern Arakan State as No-Fly Zone to deter Burmese military from assaulting civilian areas using aircrafts.
Information Department Arakan American Community (AAC)