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    A Myanmar police officer stands watch as journalists arrive in Shwe Zar village in the suburb of Maungdaw town, northern Rakhine state of Myanmar, on Wednesday, Sept. 6, 2017

    'Elements of Genocide' Cannot Be Ruled Out in Myanmar - UN Human Rights Chief

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    The situation in Rakhine state still remains tense in the wake of the Myanmar authorities' military campaign launched against the Rohingya minority.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein noted that only a competent court can make a final decision on whether Myanmar's crisis included "elements of genocide."

    "Can anyone rule out that elements of genocide may be present?… The concerns are extremely serious, and clearly call for access to be immediately granted for further verification," Zeid told the UN Human Rights Council, as quoted by the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR).

    The UN high commissioner also called on the council to take steps to end the violence against the Rohingyas.

    READ MORE: Ray of Hope for Peace: Pope Francis Arrives in Myanmar Amid Rohingya Crisis

    More than 600,000 Rohingyas were forced to flee the country to neighboring Bangladesh in August after Myanmar's government took military actions in response to the conflict between the Rohingya minority and Myanmar's army which followed Rohingya militants' attacks on government's military outposts. The actions of Myanmar's military have drawn strong worldwide condemnation.

    The US has branded the violent acts against Rohingya Muslims as "ethnic cleansing," whereas in early November, Washington introduced the bill on sanctions and travel restrictions on Myanmar military officials.

    Similarly, a number of human-rights NGOs, such as Amnesty International, accused Myanmar of "apartheid."

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    Tags:
    rohingya refugees, Rohingya Muslims, UN Human Rights Council, Rakhine, Myanmar
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