The United States will be doubling its financial aid to the Rohingya Muslims. According to a report from Reuters, around 700,000 Rohingya Muslims have been displaced from their homes in Myanmar. Nikki Haley, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, made the announcement earlier this week.
The crisis began in 2017 after Rohingya allied groups attacked Myanmar police and military forces. In retaliation, the Myanmar military has conducted several missions against the Rohingya, including “forced deportations.” These operations have created a humanitarian crisis.
Additionally, U.N. investigators discovered that the Myanmar military has committed “mass killings and gang rapes” against the Rohingya Muslims. The investigators also determined that the operations against the Rohingya Muslims have been carried out with “genocidal intent.”
The United States recently published the findings of its investigation into the situation in Myanmar and reached a similar conclusion, adding that the atrocities committed by the Myanmar military were ” well-planned and coordinated.” However, the U.S. has not classified the violence against the Rohingya Muslims as a genocide.
“The military is at fault, the fact-finding mission came out and gave clear examples of what’s happened,” Ambassador Haley said to journalists on Monday. “These weren’t terrorists. This was the military that did this to them. These people just want a place to live.”
Many have called for the arrest and prosecution of six Myanmar military commanders, including top general Min Aung Hlaing who has denounced the investigators’ findings and warned against foreign intervention.
“As countries set different standards and norms, any country, organization and group has no right to interfere in and make decision(s) over sovereignty of a country,” Min Aung Hlaing said via his website.
Myanmar’s U.N. ambassador did not respond to the criticism, and the country’s government has denied the allegations in the past. Myanmar officials also claim that the investigations were ‘ “one-sided” and that the Myanmar military’s actions in the area are “legitimate counterinsurgency operations.”
Ambassador Haley said that the United States would be sending $185 million of additional aid to the Rohingya Muslims, the majority of which is going to the refugees who have fled the country and are now living in neighboring Bangladesh. With these additional funds, the total amount spent by the United States this year will be $389 million.
The U.S. is also calling on foreign countries to put pressure on Myanmar to end the crackdown.
“It’s time for the international community to move. I did also request the French and the British to bring the fact-finding mission and have that reported in the Security Council,” said Haley while speaking to reporters on Monday.
Answering Ambassador Haley’s call for international action, Reuters reports that the International Criminal Court is investigating the possibility of prosecuting those allegedly responsible for the forced deportation of Rohingya to Bangladesh.
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