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Myanmar's 'ethnic cleansing' of Rohingya continues, says UN official

UN Assistant Secretary-General for Human Rights Andrew Gilmour said widespread and systematic violence against the Rohingya persists.

FILE: A Rohingya Muslim refugee waits with others for food aid at Thankhali refugee camp in Bangladesh's Ukhia district on 12 January 2018. Picture AFP

YANGON - Myanmar’s “ethnic cleansing” of Rohingya Muslims was continuing, a senior UN human rights official said on Tuesday, more than six months after insurgent attacks sparked a security response that has driven nearly 700,000 people into Bangladesh.

“The ethnic cleansing of Rohingya from Myanmar continues. I don’t think we can draw any other conclusion from what I have seen and heard in Cox’s Bazar,” UN Assistant Secretary-General for Human Rights Andrew Gilmour said after a four-day visit to refugee camps in Bangladesh’s Cox’s Bazar district.

“It appears that widespread and systematic violence against the Rohingya persists,” Gilmour added in a statement.

“The nature of the violence has changed from the frenzied blood-letting and mass rape of last year to a lower intensity campaign of terror and forced starvation that seems to be designed to drive the remaining Rohingya from their homes and into Bangladesh.”

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