July 7, 2020
We the undersigned organizations are representing the Arakanese community all over the world. Firstly, we welcome British government recent visa and financial restrictions on Tatamadaw’s commander in chef and voice commander. This development of restrictions over the Myanmar top generals is a good step taken by one of the UN Security members.
Secondly, we call on all member states of the UN Security Council (UNSC) to enforce the order of International Court of Justice (ICJ) and the provisional measures to protect civilian populations in Rakhine State, Myanmar, and similar restrictions. Thirdly, our community urge the UN Security Council to investigate the perpetration of summary executions, arbitrary arrests, torture, disappeared, rape, arson, and forced relocations of communities by the Myanmar military and to take concrete actions against the military for war crimes and crimes against humanity. We strongly recommend UNSC actions against the Myanmar government to include economic sanctions, armed embargos, the dismissal of Myanmar’s representative at the UN, no fly zones, R2P if necessary, and visa restrictions on Myanmar government and military officials.
The ongoing Myanmar Military’s clearance operations in Kyauk Tan Village tract in Rathedaung township, Rakhine state are forcing tens of thousands of people to flee to different townships. Myanmar military issued the order to clear all residents in 42 villages in the village tract on June 24, but it revoked the order on June 27. Whereas people are fear to be killed, arrest and tortured, they are fleeing to Sittway, Rathedaung, Punaygun, and nearby villages in Maungdaw township in order to take shelters and protected. The fleeing communities are displaced, and lack sufficient food and medicine with no security and protection in temporary shelters. The government fails to provide emergency humanitarian assistance to tens of thousands of internally displace persons.
The British government, as well as the foreign diplomatic missions of Australia, Canada, UK, US and UN have issued statements that call on the Myanmar military to uphold the obligation of ICJ provision measures and the protection of the civilian populations.
According to reports made by the local news agencies and charity organizations, 3,000 residents out 8,000 villagers are facing shortage of foods and starvation in Dar Let village track in Ann township when Myanmar military imposed a curfew law and blocked road and water transportations in January. These vulnerable civilian population will starve and die without a concrete UN step undertaken to provide immediate response to the lockdown communities. Myanmar leaderships has failed to meet its obligation towards the Rakhine people and continues to systematic eliminate us on the basis of racial hatred.
Myanmar leaderships has failed to meet its obligation towards the Rakhine people and continues to systematic eliminate us on the basis of racial hatred. Internet access has been shut down in Rakhine and Chin States for one year, which effects 1.3 million people. At the same time, the population is threatened by COVID-19 pandemic and the virus continues to spread. Rakhine State is the second largest coronavirus infected region in Myanmar while people are trapped in the middle of the armed conflicts. Arakan Army has been fighting for greater autonomy, but the military and government respond with aggressive military operation and systematic killing of unarmed civilians and targeting vulnerable communities.
In addition, local human rights organizations have reported that 270 civilians have been killed, 552 residents injured, and 574 villagers arrested, many more disappeared from January 2019 to June 2020. Eighteen residents including minor teenage boy have been missing from Tin Ma and Tin Ma Gyi villages for four months after Myanmar soldiers arrested them in March. Family members do not know where they are still alive or killed. The entire villages were also burned down and thousands of residents have been displaced and sought refuge in Kyauktaw since early March.
Internally displaced refugees have reached 233,451 up to date, which is 11.67 percent of Rakhine population of estimated 2 million. The violence and atrocities will never end in Rakhine State as long as the military is unpunished, and the perpetrators are not held accountable to international law.
Therefore, we call on UNSC to take immediate, effectively, and concrete actions against the Myanmar government and the military. Organizations:
- Arakan American Community
The United States of America
- Arakan Bangladesh Community
- Arakan Information Center
Myanmar, Malaysia, and Thailand
- Arakan Youth’s Union (Japan)
- Arakan UK Community
- Canada Arakanese Community
- International Campaign for Arakan
The United States of America
- European Campaign for Arakan
- Indian Arakan Community