Myanmar Forces and Buddhist Villagers Torched Rohingya Homes, then Killed

Rohingya Refugee Women

Rohingya Refugee Women

The 4,600-word report, published on February 9, is accompanied by images of the 10 massacre victims before and after they were killed by villagers and soldiers at Inn Din on September 2 past year.

They offer evidence of a massacre believed to have taken place on the morning of 2 September past year, after the arrival of troops in the village of Inn Din drove its Rohingya inhabitants to flee.

Disturbing photographs have shed light on a massacre of 10 Rohingya men shot and hacked to death as violence in Myanmar gathered momentum in September. "The rest were shot by Myanmar troops", Reuters reported, citing two of the gravediggers.

A January statement by the Burmese army on the massacre of the 10 men said security forces were attacked by about 200 Bengalis with sticks and swords, and the security forces had opened fire into the sky, arresting 10 of the villagers while the remainder dispersed.

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The account marked the first time soldiers and paramilitary police have been implicated by testimony from security personnel in arson and killings in the north of Rakhine state that the United Nations has said may amount to genocide.

"If they have a place to live, if they have food to eat, they can carry out more attacks", one of the local policeman who took part in the operation said.

Asked about the evidence Reuters had uncovered about the massacre, Myanmar government spokesperson Zaw Htay said on Thursday, before publication of the report: "We are not denying the allegations about violations of human rights".

Human Rights Watch said Myanmar's military leaders should be held accountable in an worldwide court for alleged crimes against the Rohingya population.

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If there was "strong and reliable primary evidence" of abuses, the government would investigate, he said.

Men and women who had newly arrived at refugee camps in Bangladesh were interviewed and described how forced starvation, abductions and looting of property drove them to flee their homes. Bangladesh and Myanmar had earlier signed deals to start the repatriation. "Their only crime was to take an interest in the atrocities by Myanmar's security forces against the country's Rohingya minority, which resulted in an exodus of around 700,000 refugees", Daniel Bastard, head of Reporters Without Borders' Asia-Pacific desk, told The Washington Post via email.

Similarities exist between the Reuters report and the account from the military.

Police arrested two Reuters reporters, Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo, on December 12 for allegedly obtaining confidential documents relating to Rakhine and have accused them of violating Myanmar's Official Secrets Act. If convicted they face up to 14 years in prison.

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