Myanmar’s army 'killed Muslim Rohingyas with genocidal intent’

Myanmar generals should be prosecuted for 'genocidal intent' against Rohingya, UN investigators say

"Myanmar's top military generals, including Commander-in-Chief Senior General Min Aung Hlaing, must be investigated and prosecuted for genocide in the north of Rakhine State, as well as for crimes against humanity and war crimes in Rakhine, Kachin and Shan States", the report said.

Their report also criticized de facto civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi, a former political prisoner and a past victor of the Nobel Peace Prize, of not doing enough to prevent the military operations in Rakhine state.

The council created the mission in March a year ago - almost six months before a string of deadly rebel attacks on security and police posts set off a crackdown that drove Rohingya to flee into neighbouring Bangladesh.

But the report said the crimes it documented were "shocking for the level of denial, normalcy and impunity that is attached to them".

Protests were held to commemorate the first anniversary of Myanmar's crackdown on Rohingyas which started on 25th August 2017 and resulted in a mass exodus of Muslims to camps in Bangladesh.

The U.N.'s Independent International Fact-Finding Mission on Myanmar released its report on Monday.

Many Rohingya survivors and victims were traumatised by the killings and rapes inflicted on the Muslim minority previous year as 700,000 fled across the border.

Christopher Sidoti, an Australian human rights expert, acknowledged that no "smoking gun" linked the six military leaders directly to orders to carry out genocide, but pointed to inferences of their role based on a strict chain of command in Myanmar.

Myanmar never permitted the United Nations investigators access to the country, but they said that during their investigation they had interviewed 857 victims and eyewitnesses, and had used satellite imagery and authenticated documents, photographs and videos as a basis to reach their conclusions.

They also recommended that the matter be referred to the International Criminal Court or another special tribunal.

Shortly after the United Nations report appeared, the tech giant announced it was "banning 20 Burmese individuals and organisations from Facebook - including Senior General Min Aung Hlaing".

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But in a trial that has commanded an worldwide spotlight and is widely seen as a litmus test for the civilian government's relationship with the press, the delay was widely perceived to have political motivations, especially as the decision comes on the eve of the U.N. Security Council briefing on Myanmar.

Kyaw Soe Oo and Wa Lone were probing the September 2017 massacre of 10 Rohingya men and boys in Myanmar's Rakhine state a week after the military launched a sweeping crackdown on members of the stateless Muslim minority.

The call prompted Facebook, which has been criticised for allowing hate speech against the Rohingya to flourish, to ban the army chief and remove other pages tied to the country's military.

"We continue to work to prevent the misuse of Facebook in Myanmar - including through the independent human rights impact assessment we commissioned earlier in the year".

Under the constitution, civilian authorities have little control over the military. Stecklow said the social media platform is the only news source for many people in Myanmar, with millions of users.

The Rohingya are one of the many ethnic minorities in Myanmar and make up the largest percentage of Muslims.

Today, we are taking more action in Myanmar, removing a total of 18 Facebook accounts, one Instagram account and 52 Facebook Pages, followed by nearly 12 million people.

The UN report singled out Facebook for its "slow and ineffective" response.

This month it admitted it had been "too slow" in tackling hate speech in Myanmar on Facebook.

Last week, CBSN spoke to Reuters global investigative reporter Steve Stecklow, who wrote about the discovery of more than 1,000 examples of posts, comments and images on Facebook attacking the minority group.

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