Burma’s Foreign Minister says the president has ordered an investigation into alleged incidents in the Arakan State village of Duchira Dan, but it appears that US and UN calls for an internationally-backed inquiry have been rejected.
Maungdaw security forces have launched a search for the Rohingya men of Duchira Dan village who have apparently gone into hiding since the disappearance of a local police sergeant in the village on 13 January.
The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights says she has received credible information that at least 48 Muslim Rohingyas were killed last week in northern Arakan, but the Burmese government maintains the murders never happened.
The Burmese government denied on Friday that a Buddhist mob ripped through a town in an isolated strife-torn corner of the country this week, attacking Muslim women and children. Villagers and a rights group said more than a dozen people may have been killed, and that hundreds have fled.
Campaign group Amnesty International said on Tuesday it had gathered evidence that insurgents from a Rohingya Muslim armed group killed scores of Hindu civilians in August last year, amid a surge in violence in western Burma.
A judge in Yangon on Tuesday allowed the submission of evidence police say they obtained from the mobile phones of two Reuters reporters arrested in December for alleged possession of secret documents, in what has become a landmark press freedom case.
Britain’s UN envoy suggests the UN Security Council could consider helping Burma collect evidence of crimes committed during a military crackdown of the Rohingya, denounced by the world body as ethnic cleansing after most recent bout of persecution of the Muslim minority last year.
A government spokesman on Wednesday moved quickly to refute a state media report that seven soldiers who were convicted for involvement in a high-profile massacre of Rohingya Muslims in Rakhine State were released a day earlier as part of a mass amnesty marking the Burmese New Year.
The United Nations on Wednesday called on Burma to give aid agencies unhindered access to camps it has built for tens of thousands of Muslim Rohingya refugees before they can return after fleeing Burmese military operations last year.
Two senior government officials over the weekend inspected camps being readied in anticipation of the repatriation of hundreds of thousands of Rohingya refugees from Rakhine State, who are currently sheltering in neighbouring Bangladesh.
Rakhine State Chief Minister Nyi Pu has cautioned that Muslim militancy is a continuing threat in the western state, where a military vehicle was hit by an improvised explosive device last week, injuring at least five people.
Life has stopped in its tracks in Burma’s northern Rakhine State where an estimated 180,000 Rohingya remain, fearful after violence drove 650,000 to flee to Bangladesh, the International Committee of the Red Cross said on Wednesday.
President Htin Kyaw has established yet another governmental body to address the situation in troubled Rakhine State, this one comprised of Burmese and foreign members including the chairman of the Myanmar National Human Rights Commission and a former US presidential aspirant.
Burma’s de facto leader Aung San Suu Kyi visited areas hit by conflict in the western state of Rakhine on Thursday for the first time since attacks by militants from the Rohingya Muslim minority two months ago sparked a refugee crisis.
The Rakhine State government is set to close down, by 2 November, temporary camps for internally displaced persons affected by the most recent violence to plague the state, insisting that calm has been restored at their original places of residence.
Two hunters from a remote village in the north of Arakan State were killed and two others were injured by unidentified gunmen after crossing the border into Bangladesh, the Burmese government said on Monday.