Myanmar soldiers confess to mass murder and rape of Rohingya Muslims
According to Myo Win Tun, the 15th Military Operations Centre commander ordered to "shoot all you hear and all you see" when assaulting Muslim villages.
Two Myanmar soldiers have gone on record, validating for the first time, the army’s atrocities against the nation’s Rohingya Muslim minority.
According to a human rights group, the two defectors said on camera that they were instructed to carry out mass rape and killings in 2017, which corresponds to accounts by victims of the attacks in Rakhine province.
The NGO Fortify Rights, says that the testimony, which claims that women, men, and children were buried in mass graves as well, could be used as evidence of crimes against humanity in the International Criminal Court (ICC). The rights group said that the two soldiers fled Myanmar last month and are said to be in the ICC’s custody in The Hague.
Myo Win Tun and Zaw Naing Tun reportedly gave “the names and ranks of 19 direct perpetrators from the Myanmar army, counting themselves, as well as six senior commanders, whom they claim ordered or contributed to atrocity crimes against Rohingya.”
According to Myo Win Tun, the 15th Military Operations Centre commander ordered to “shoot all you hear and all you see” when assaulting Muslim villages. They killed and buried “eight women, seven children and 15 men and elderly” in one operation.
“We also raped Muslim women before shooting them,” he said. “There were the officers, sergeants, and corporals who raped Muslim women. I also raped a woman one time.”
The Myanmar government has consistently rejected accusations of genocide against the Muslim minority. Earlier this year, it claimed that the allegations are based on a “distorted picture of the situation” after the International Court of Justice ordered Myanmar to prevent the ethnic cleansing of the Rohingya.
The UN says that at least 10,000 people have been murdered, and more than 700,000 have fled Rakhine state since the military’s 2017 crackdown following attacks by the Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (ARSA) the previous year. Thousands of Rohingya women and girls, it is said, were raped, and between 2017 and 2019, around 200 Rohingya villages were razed to the ground.
ARSA was formed following the Rakhine State riots in 2012 that involved attacks on Muslim villages, leaving tens of thousands displaced. Human Rights Watch described the incidents supported by the Myanmar authorities, as “ethnic cleansing.”
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