By M.S. Anwar | Opinion Editorial
December 2, 2016
The Burmese government formed an inquiry commission ‘to investigate into the on-going crisis in Maungdaw’ on December 1, according to a statement released by the Myanmar President U Htin Kyaw.
The formation of the inquiry commission came in the wake of the international pressures mounting on the Burmese government in regard to the serious crimes being committed by the (Burmese) military against the Rohingya ethnic minority in Maungdaw.
The statement, on paper, says “the inquiry commission is formed to investigate into the background that led to the militant attacks in Maungdaw; and its aftermaths and alleged human rights abuses on October 9 and November 12 and 13; and to prevent any such violence/attacks from occurring in the future.”
The inquiry commission comprises the members of the ruling government, the MPs, the Myanmar Police Chief, Ex-Burmese United Nations Staffs and the members of Burmese Human Rights Organizations and so on.
The commission is to be chaired by U Myint Swe, current vice president 1 and ex-Lt-General who had been involved with Military Security Affairs and NaSaKa, the former Border Security Forces notorious as ‘Rohingya exterminating machine.’
Shockingly, neither any member from the Rohingya community, against whom the Burmese military the atrocities are being committed, nor any members from other Burmese Muslim communities are included in the commission.
“You commit the crimes, then you form an inquiry commission to probe into your own crimes. Your commission members will do their best to conceal the crimes you have committed. And lie to the with a straight face. End of the story! Another phase of genocide has been completed. Simple, isn’t?” asked an elderly Rohingya in Maungdaw.
Hence, to put it bluntly, the Inquiry Commission has been formed by the Burmese government with its own people to investigate into the mass atrocities committed against the Rohingya by its own military. How would they scrutinize the military involved in the gross atrocities and mass rapes against Rohingya? Above all, why would they really investigate into the complicities of the military officials in the crimes? Whose order the military officials of the lower ranks on the ground act upon?
One can continue to ask countless questions. But all the questions will lead to only an answer. That is the Burmese military, from the highest ranks to the lowest ranks, are complicit in the mass crimes against Rohingya.
One may argue that the Burmese civilian government led by Daw Aung San Suu Kyi is not complicit in the crimes as the military is not, by the constitution, liable to listen to her order. But her silence, cover-up of the military’s crimes and acting as a military shield well amount her complicit in the genocide of the Rohingyas.
Therefore, the inquiry commission formed by the President Htin Kyaw — apparently under the directions of Daw Suu Kyi and the Snr Gen Min Aung Hlaing — is nothing but a vile attempt to conceal the crimes of ethnic cleansing against Rohingya and decrease the international pressures on the government to allow international investigation teams in Arakan State.
Exactly, it is something that will give déjà vu moments to anyone familiar to Rohingya issues of the 2012 Rakhine Inquiry Commission that twisted the truths and forged the reports of the state-sponsored violence against the Rohingya and fooled the international community!
Therefore, the Rohingya as a whole categorically reject the Inquiry Commission formed by the Burmese government on December 1. We demand international investigation teams to be sent to Arakan and carry out investigations the fairest possible.
Statement by the President U Htin Kyaw of Forming Inquiring Commission of Maungdaw Crisis
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