Rohingya villages Ruined ‘to erase evidence’
Satellite images of Myanmar imply whole Rohingya villages have been destroyed, campaign group Human Rights Watch states,
The team said at least 55 villages – most of which have been damaged by arson – had been completely bulldozed.
The cities “ought to be treated as crime scenes” and maintained, it included.
Over half a million Rohingya individuals fled the devastation of their houses last year in the UN called a “textbook case of cultural cleansing”.
Villages where Rohingya had lived were burned and several thousand people were killed in retaliation after Rohingya militants staged a series of attacks on police outposts.
Myanmar’s military says it is fighting the militants and denies targeting civilians.
Most fleeing Rohingya created the trip throughout the border to neighbouring Bangladesh.
Human Rights Watch stated the apparent destruction of houses erases signs for lawful claims in the exiled Rohingya.
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United Nations team have not been allowed access to the region to carry out an analysis.
“Many of the villages were scenes of atrocities from Rohingya and needs to be maintained so the specialists appointed by the UN to record such abuses can correctly evaluate the signs to identify those responsible,” said Brad Adams, Asia director at Human Rights Watch.
“Bulldozing these places threatens to divert both the memory and the lawful claims of the Rohingya who lived there.”
The repatriation is voluntary – and faith groups have raised concerns about the conditions awaiting those who return. Many of those living in camps in Bangladesh have said they need guarantees of their safety.
Mr Adams said the clearing of cities “only heightens concerns” about the repatriation programs.
He said authorities donating to the cause ought to take care not to help “attempts to pretend the Rohingya don’t have the right to come back to their villages”.
Formerly, Myanmar officials have said property has to be cleared before new houses can be constructed.
The Rohingya are a Muslim cultural group that has resided in majority-Buddhist Myanmar for generations.
But they’re denied citizenship and other rights from the nation, which considers them to be illegal immigrants from Bangladesh.