Myanmar’s military junta has committed crimes against humanity amid ongoing conflicts in the country following the coup last year, said a new report by the United Nations. Source: NCR Online.
The UN Independent Investigative Mechanism for Myanmar said in its annual report on August 9 that sexual and gender-based crimes, including rape and other forms of sexual violence, and crimes against children have been perpetrated systematically by members of the security forces and armed groups.
Since starting operations three years ago, the IIMM has collected more than 3 million pieces of information from almost 200 sources; these include interview statements, documentation, videos, photographs, geospatial imagery and social media material, reported ucanews.com.
“There are ample indications that since the military seized power in February 2021, crimes have been committed in Myanmar on a scale and in a manner that constitutes a widespread and systematic attack against a civilian population, and the nature of potential criminality is also expanding,” the report said.
It said this includes the execution of four pro-democracy activists on July 25, after the report was prepared.
The report also revealed children in Myanmar have been tortured, conscripted and arbitrarily detained, including as proxies for their parents, UCA News reported.
More than 2100 people, including scores of children, have been killed and over 15,000 people have been detained by the junta since the February 1, 2021, coup.
Especially since the coup, Catholic leaders in Myanmar have spoken out for human rights. Most recently, in June, the bishops expressed deep concern over the worsening situation in the country. They urged that much-needed humanitarian assistance be allowed to reach displaced people across the country.
Pope Francis has repeatedly called for prayers for Myanmar
U.N. report: Myanmar junta ‘committing systematic crimes against humanity’ (CNS via NCR Online)