US House urges Myanmar sanctions over Rohingya campaign

Halima Khatun, who arrived in Bangladesh in October holds a whistle and a razor blade that she uses as toys at the Shamlapur refugee camp in Coxs Bazar Dec. 1 2017

Ed Jones AFP Getty Images

Myanmar's security forces may be guilty of genocide against the Rohingya Muslim minority, according to the top United Nations human rights official this week.

The resolution also urges the restoration of humanitarian access to the restive Rakhine state where unrest has forced hundreds of thousands of Rohingya Muslims to flee to Bangladesh. Zeid Raad al-Hussein asked the UN's Human Rights Council at a meeting in Geneva, Switzerland overnight, ABC News reported.

He told a special session of the Human Rights Council on the Rohingya on Tuesday: "My government is doing everything possible to deter these extremist acts".

These crimes had been "perpetrated by Myanmar security forces and extremist Buddhist vigilantes", Alam said.

Marzuki Darusman, head of an independent worldwide fact-finding mission on Myanmar, said by video from Malaysia that his team had interviewed Rohingya refugees, including children in the Bangladeshi port city of Cox's Bazar, who recounted "acts of extreme brutality" and "displayed signs of severe trauma".

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It is estimated that more than 600,000 Rohingya have fled to neighbouring Bangladesh to escape the violence which has been escalating since the summer.

He listed alleged abuses against the Rohingya, including "killing by random firing of bullets, use of grenades, shooting at close range, stabbings, beatings to death and the burning of houses with families inside".

During their visits, Emine and Mevlüt listened to the tale of woes from the displaced Rohingya, who described the horrific details of the recent army crackdown in Northern Rakhine state. "Conditions in Myanmar's Rakhaine state are not in place to enable a safe and sustainable return. refugees are still fleeing".

The U.N. human rights chief says actions by Myanmar's government to "dehumanize" the Rohingya minority are likely to fan more violence and draw in communities from across the region.

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