Published: Sun, January 14, 2018
Medicine | By Earnest Bishop

Burma leader says probe of mass grave 'positive'

Burma leader says probe of mass grave 'positive'

More than 600,000 Rohingya, who are not recognised by the Myanmar government as one of the country's many ethnic groups, have fled to Bangladesh since August a year ago, when violence between armed Rohingya and Myanmar security forces prompted a severe crackdown.

During a meeting on Friday, Kono asked Suu Kyi's government to allow humanitarian and media access to the affected area, the resettlement of returned refugees, and the implementation of recommendations made by former U.N Secretary-General Kofi Annan.

Myanmar's military admitted this week that soldiers and villagers were responsible for the deaths of 10 Rohingya Muslims found in a grave last month in Inn Dinn village of Maungdaw Township.

Rights groups have accused Nobel Laureate Suu Kyi of failing to condemn the widespread abuses during the army crackdown, which followed raids by militants from the Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (ARSA).

"These 10 Rohingya innocent civilians found in the mass grave. were neither ARSA members nor had any association with ARSA", it said in a statement circulated on Twitter.

The Myanmar military did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

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Myanmar's civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi has called the military's investigation into the deaths of Rohingya Muslims found in a mass grave a "positive indication", state media reported Saturday.

Aung San Suu Kyi stressed the importance of the rule of law and said the military would take responsibility.

Asked if the revelations about the killing at the village of Inn Din, about 50 kilometres north of the state capital Sittwe, could be a concern for refugees who are being asked to return, Suu Kyi said: "Some people might be afraid, but this is not something that has happened right now". But the military has insisted that there has been no wrongdoing by any security forces.

National police spokesman Thet Naing said he was not aware of the murder complaint.

More than 655,000 Rohingyas have crossed into Bangladesh since August 25 a year ago, escaping a military crackdown in the Rakhine state, which many countries and human rights bodies have described as ethnic cleansing.

Myanmar denies ethnic cleansing, saying its security forces had mounted legitimate counter-insurgency clearance operations.

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