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Civil society groups call on UN to take urgent action against military


At least 440 civil society organizations issued an open letter to the U.N. General Assembly (UNGA) on Oct. 17. It called on U.N. member states to take action to hold Burma accountable under international law. This statement follows last month’s warning from the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights, Volker Türk, detailing military airstrikes, artillery, and arson attacks against civilians. 

The CSOs accused the international community of failing to take action to stop human rights abuses after the U.N. Security Council adopted its resolution in December 2022 condemning violence in Burma. “[The international community] must ensure justice and accountability through all possible avenues, strengthen locally led humanitarian assistance, and unequivocally support the Myanmar people’s will for federal democracy,” stated the CSOs. 

It recommended the U.N. Security Council adopts a resolution to refer Burma to the International Criminal Court (ICC) or establish an international criminal tribunal to hold hearings on alleged war crimes committed by the military. It called for immediate economic sanctions and an arms embargo. 

An airstrike on an Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) camp in Kachin State killed 29 civilians on Oct. 9. At least 4,149 have been killed by pro-military forces since the 2021 coup, states the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners (AAPP). Nearly two million people are displaced from their homes due to violence and natural disasters across Burma, states the U.N.


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