Myanmar replaces General in charge of Rohingya chaos amid UN allegations of organized rape crimes against humanity
Nov 13, 2017 World 6534 By Abdulkerimu Oare
- Myanmar replaces General in charge of Rohingya chaos amid UN allegations of organized rape crimes against humanity.
- No reason was given for Major General Maung Maung Soe being transferred from his post.
- Top UN official accuses the Myanmar Army of using organised rape as a weapon.
Myanmar has transferred the Army general who was in charge of the operations in
Rakhine State in the Western part of the country that has led to over 600,000 Rohingya Muslims fleeing to nearby Bangladesh for refuge.
No reason was given for Major General Maung Maung Soe being transferred from his post as the head of Western Command in Rakhine, where Myanmar’s military, known as the Tatmadaw, launched a sweeping counter-insurgency operation in August.
“I don’t know the reason why he was transferred,” Major General Aye Lwin, deputy director of the psychological warfare and public relation department at the Ministry of Defence, told Reuters. “He wasn’t moved into any position at present. He has been put in reserve.”
This move comes ahead of a visit on Wednesday by U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson who is expected to deliver a stern message to Myanmar’s generals
On Sunday, another U.N. official accused Myanmar’s military of conducting organized rape and other crimes against humanity, and said she would raise the matter with the International Criminal Court in the Hague.
“When I return to New York, I will brief and raise the issue with the prosecutor and president of the ICC whether they (Myanmar’s military) can be held responsible for these atrocities,” Pramila Patten, Special Representative of the Secretary-General on Sexual Violence in Conflict, said in Dhaka.
“Sexual violence is being commanded, orchestrated and perpetrated by the Armed Forces of Myanmar, otherwise known as the Tatmadaw,” Patten said following a three-day tour of the Rohingya refugee camps in the Cox’s Bazar region of Bangladesh.
“Rape is an act and a weapon of genocide,” she said.
“The forms of sexual violence we consistently heard about from survivors include gang-rape by multiple soldiers, forced public nudity and humiliation, and sexual slavery in military captivity. One survivor was in captivity for 45 days by the Myanmar army,” Patten said.