Myanmar’s junta has destroyed the country’s economic, educational, health and social protection systems and brought them to the brink of collapse, the United Nations said Thursday in a report describing a litany of violations by the military , which could amount to war crimes and crimes against humanity.

The report was prepared by the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) and documents how security forces detained the people of Myanmar from February 1st to mid-February , tortured and denied various rights – July and based on interviews with more than 70 victims and witnesses. which was published for the 48th Ordinary Session of the UN Human Rights Council from September 13th to October 8th.

“A. Because of this, efforts to achieve international accountability supported by the Human Rights Council must continue and be stepped up… Member States must act urgently to prevent Myanmar from further disintegrating into national armed conflict or state collapse. ”

In one of the report In the accompanying statement, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet urged the international community, including the 11-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), to ensure the situation does not get out of hand.

“There are no signs of effort the military authorities to stop these violations or implement previous recommendations on combating impunity and security sector reform, “she said.

” This underscores the urgent need for strong accountability measures. It also goes against the commitments to ASEAN leaders to end the violence and start a constructive dialogue between all parties. ”

Myanmar’s military has attempted to overthrow the democratically elected government of the National League for Democracy (NLD) with the Justify claim the party stole the country’s November 2020 ballot paper through election fraud.

The junta has yet to prove its claims and has forcibly suppressed anti-coup protests, killing at least 1,121 people and arresting 6,718 others, according to the Bangkok-based Assistance Association for Political Prisoners (AAPP).

In April, ASEAN leaders reached a “five-point consensus” that would lead the junta to end violence in the country and initiate dialogue takes up crackdown on his opponents in order to find a peaceful solution to the country’s political crisis.

This handout, courtesy of an anonymous source on September 18, 2021, shows people trying to put out a fire while houses in the Magway Division are burning on September 10, 2021. AFP

Litany of Abuses

The UN report documented at least 50 deaths in connection with imprisonment by mid-July and spoke to family members who – provided they were allowed to see the bodies of their loved ones before disposal – showed visible signs of injuries such as bruises in the victims and reported broken noses and ribs, head injuries, sewn cuts and burn marks. In many cases, the families did not receive any information about medical examinations or investigations into the cause of death.

Children were arbitrarily detained and served in military interrogation centers, the United Nations said, while they were allegedly subjected to torture and ill-treatment in detention. < The report states that the military's "four cuts" strategy of cutting off enemies' access to money, food, intelligence and recruits violates "a number of human rights as well as international humanitarian law" in certain situations Among other things, through retaliation against communities after skirmishes with militias of the People's Defense Forces (PDF) or during searches that led to killings or injuries and displacement.

In one example, the military responded to the takeover with heavy weapons and air strikes in populated areas at the end of May several police stations and bases a joint force of PDFs and ethnic armed organizations (EAOs) in Kayah state and southern Shan state in more than 55 reported civilian deaths. The remains found after the fighting subsided in June included 22 bodies showing signs of execution, the report said.

The United Nations also documented an increase in targeted crime between February and July Killings and use of explosive devices by unidentified actors, including more than 130 deaths from shootings and knife wounds since May alone. The majority of the targeted people are said to have been current or former area administrators or suspected military informants.

The junta’s actions took place against the backdrop of a decimated health sector grappling with a deadly COVID-19 outbreak which killed 17,266 people and infected nearly 452,000, plus a growing loss of investor confidence that wrecked the country’s economy.

The United Nations found that around 200,000 women textile workers – mostly women – reportedly lost their jobs by April had, as well as up to 400,000 construction workers.

Health facilities, personnel, transportation and supplies were exposed to direct attacks by security forces, according to the report, with the World Health Organization (WHO) between February 1 and the end of June 248 incidents recorded.

The report concludes that the numerous human rights violations and abuses as well as violations of international humanitarian law “can amount to war crimes … [and] crimes against humanity”.

“The national consequences are terrible and tragic – the regional consequences could also be profound,” said Bachelet the results of the report.

“The international community must redouble its efforts to restore democracy and prevent major conflict before it is too late.”

Attempts by the RFA’s Myanmar Service, the spokesman’s office Contacting the junta for comment on the report’s findings went unanswered Thursday.

Protesters hold a three-finger salute during a demonstration against the military coup in Yangon on July 11, 2021. AFP

Tougher approach chosen

Aung Myo Min, the NUG’s human rights minister, praised what he said was the United Nations’ much tougher approach to holding the junta accountable for its actions.

“This time dealt with your report more serious crimes such as crimes committed during the armed conflict and human rights abuses such as extrajudicial killings, “he told RFA.

In July, Bachelet called for international pressure to end the violence in Myanmar, but resigned violations in the country do not equate to war crimes and crimes against humanity.

Phil Robertson, deputy Asia director for Human Rights Watch based in New York, told RFA that the report made it “fairly clear” that ” Crimes against humanity are again taking place in Myanmar and that the situation is ultimately slipping back to the worst ”. Scenario. “

” Not only do they find excessive and lethal force being used against demonstrators, but also systematic torture and abuse. And they try to sound the alarm to the international community by saying, ‘Look, something has to stop here ‘… because the situation in Myanmar is so dire that we are now facing a huge human rights crisis as called for an arms embargo.

Robertson said the report now puts the responsibility on the international community to take “comprehensive sanctions” and other measures that would force the junta to end its oppression of the people of Myanmar.

“That is very clear, and she is speaking correctly, asking that the big question is whether the international community will do this.”

Reported by Myanma r Service of the RFA. Translated by Kyaw Min Htun. Written in English by Joshua Lipes.

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