One year ago, a terrible human rights crisis erupted in Myanmar. The Myanmar military embarked on a vicious and systematic campaign against the ethnic Rohingya in Rakhine state, burning villages to the ground and killing thousands of civilians, including men, women and children.
In the past year, Amnesty International has documented extensively this relentless campaign of ethnic cleansing, and the squalid camps on the Myanmar-Bangladesh border where more than 900,000 Rohingya who managed to escape are now housed.
The Myanmar military assaulted civilians, including children, shooting and killing them as they fled in horror. They laid landmines along the path to safety. Hundreds of thousands of Rohingya have been killed with their homes destroyed and women sexually assaulted. The United Nations called this crisis “a textbook example of ethnic cleansing.”
It’s time for United Nations Ambassador Nikki Haley to move for an international mechanism that will pave the way for bringing the perpetrators of these crimes to justice. Ask your Member of Congress to push for an investigation of crimes against the Rohingya now.
September 14, 2017
Amnesty International can reveal new evidence pointing to a mass-scale scorched-earth campaign across northern Rakhine State, where Myanmar security forces and vigilante mobs are burning down entire Rohingya villages and shooting people at random as they try to flee.
The organization’s analysis of active fire-detection data, satellite imagery, photographs and videos from the ground, as well as interviews with dozens of eyewitnesses in Myanmar and across the border in Bangladesh, shows how an orchestrated campaign of systematic burnings has targeted Rohingya villages across northern Rakhine State for almost three weeks.
“The evidence is irrefutable – the Myanmar security forces are setting northern Rakhine State ablaze in a targeted campaign to push the Rohingya people out of Myanmar. Make no mistake: this is ethnic cleansing,” said Tirana Hassan, Amnesty International’s Crisis Response Director.
The Amnesty International Club at Vashon High School in Vashon Island, Washington held a telephone conference with Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Aung San Suu Kyi on December 10, 2010. Aung San Suu Kyi was released on November 13, 2010 after spending more than 15 of the past 21 years under house arrest and is now able to communicate with people from around the world.
The telephone conference was organized by Alix Clarke along with students Brooke Kipling and Emma Lodes. Teacher Harris Levinson helped the students pose questions to Aung San Suu Kyi. The group in attendance felt very honored to be able to ask her questions and hear her brilliant and insightful answers.
13 November 2010
Myanmar should free all prisoners of conscience
following Aung San Suu Kyi’s release
Amnesty International today welcomes the release of Aung San Suu Kyi, but calls on the government of Myanmar to immediately release all of the prisoners of conscience in the country.
Aung San Suu Kyi, Myanmar’s best-known prisoner of conscience, has spent more than 15 of the past 21 years under house arrest. She was one of more than 2,200 political prisoners, including prisoners of conscience, currently being held in deplorable conditions for simply exercising their right to peaceful protest.
“While Daw Aung San Suu Kyi’s release is certainly welcome, it only marks the end of an unfair sentence that was illegally extended, and is by no means a concession on the part of the authorities”, said Amnesty International’s Secretary General, Salil Shetty. “The fact remains that authorities should never have arrested her or the many other prisoners of conscience in Myanmar in the first place, locking them out of the political process”.
The last time an election took place in Myanmar (also known as Burma), the results were ignored and the winner, Aung San Suu Kyi, was locked up.
Twenty years later – on November 7 – the country will hold another much-anticipated and highly controversial election. However Aung San Suu Kyi, whose party won the elections 20 years ago by a landslide, will likely not be released from house arrest until after the election has concluded.
Aung San Suu Kyi is one of more than 2,100 political prisoners detained in Myanmar today. Silencing opposition voices violates three fundamental freedoms that all member countries of ASEAN, the Association of Southeast Asian Nations – including Myanmar – must adhere to: freedom of expression, peaceful assembly and association.