Scores of Rohingya villagers in Myanmar have been massacred and buried in 5 mass graves, according to an exclusive investigation by the Associated Press news agency. The report by the news agency on Thursday (02/06/2020) includes witness testimony from two dozen survivors and relatives of victims, as well as time-stamped mobile phone footage of the aftermath of the attack. Estimates suggest 400 members of the persecuted Muslim minority were killed by government troops. Video obtained by the agency indicates attempts at using acid to remove the bodies. The remains contained inside the shallow graves rose to the surface after heavy rainfall and survivors were able to film the evidence.
Phil Robertson of Human Rights said the report “raises the stakes for the international community to demand accountability from Myanmar” and underlined the need for a UN-led arms embargo on the country. “The AP’s report that (soldiers) brought along to Gu Dyar Pin village containers of acid to disfigure the bodies and make identification more difficult is particularly damning because it shows a degree of pre-planning of these atrocities,” Robertson said. “It’s time for EU and the US to get serious about identifying and leveling targeted sanctions against the Burmese military commanders and soldiers responsible for these rights crimes.” UN special envoy on human rights in Myanmar,Yanghee Lee told reporters on Thursday the killing and disposal of the bodies bear “the hallmarks of a genocide.”