Crimes Against Humanity in Burma
In 2010, Physicians for Human Rights investigated alleged human rights violations against the people of Chin State. Our research revealed extraordinary levels of state and military violence against civilian populations. The 2011 report, Life Under the Junta: Evidence of Crimes Against Humanity in Burma’s Chin State, provides the first quantitative data of these human rights violations. Our report also reveals that at least eight of the violations surveyed fall within the purview of the International Criminal Court (ICC).
Our research revealed widespread reports of human rights violations among 621 randomly selected Chin households during the 12 months prior to interviews. The abuses included forced labor, religious persecution, beatings, killing, disappearances, torture, rape and widespread pillaging.
In September 2011, PHR also conducted an investigation in Burma’s Kachin State in response to reports of grave human rights violations in the region. PHR found that between June and September 2011, the Burmese army looted food from civilians, fired indiscriminately into villages, threatened villages with attacks, and used civilians as porters and human minesweepers. Our report, Under Siege in Kachin State, Burma, details these findings and the status of Kachin IDP camps.
Resolution to End Persecution of the Rohingya in Burma Introduced (November 19, 2013)
PHR welcomed the introduction of a resolution that aims to end discrimination against the Rohingya, a minority group in Burma (officially the Union of Myanmar) that is one of the world’s most persecuted ethnic groups.
PHR’s Dr. Holly Atkinson to Discuss Persecution of Rohingya and Anti-Muslim Violence in Burma on Monday (October 29, 2013)
Dr. Holly Atkinson, volunteer medical advisor and past president of Physicians for Human Rights (PHR), will speak Monday at a panel event, “Our Walls Bear Witness: The Plight of Burma’s Rohingya.”
PHR Documents Systematic Patterns of Anti-Muslim Violence in Burma (August 20, 2013)
PHR today released a report documenting the recent wave of violence against Muslims throughout Burma, whose government has created a culture of impunity for the violators and has failed to protect the Muslim minority.
United States Extends Ban on Gems and Jade from Burma (August 8, 2013)
PHR welcomed President Obama‘s executive order keeping the ban on import of gems and jadeite from Burma, helping acknowledge that Burma’s gem industry is rife with exploitation and abuse.
Commemorating the 75th Anniversary of Kristallnacht: Lessons for Early Atrocity Prevention in Burma (November 9, 2013)
November 9, 2013 marks the 75th anniversary of Kristallnacht, or “crystal night.” On this day in 1938, Nazis in Germany staged state-sanctioned, anti-Jewish riots that demolished windows of Jewish shops & burned down synagogues, hospitals, & cultural institutions.
The Plight of Burma’s Rohingya (November 7, 2013)
On November 3, 2013, a boat carrying at least 70 Rohingya men, women, and children sank off of the coast of Burma. The boat was allegedly headed for Malaysia, where these displaced Rohingyas sought safety from the ongoing persecution and violence in Burma.
Burma’s Rohingya Need Protection from Persecution (November 1, 2013)
Rakhine state, on the western coast of Burma, is among the most dangerous places in the world to be a Muslim. Just over a year ago, simmering tensions and small-scale clashes erupted into mass violence between Buddhist Rakhines and Muslim Rohingya, a minority of about 800,000 whose roots in Burma are several centuries old.
Remembering the 8888 Protests in Burma (August 8, 2013)
August 8, 2013 marks the 25th anniversary of the 8/8/88 uprising in Burma, when the Burmese military brutally suppressed pro-democracy protesters. Student leaders initiated the demonstrations in Rangoon to protest corruption, government mismanagement, and the lack of economic reforms.
Patterns of Anti-Muslim Violence in Burma (August 2013)
In this report, PHR documents how persecution of and violence against the Rohingya in Burma has spread to other Muslim communities throughout the country. PHR conducted eight separate investigations in Burma and the surrounding region between 2004 and 2013.
Massacre in Central Burma (May 2013)
Anti-Muslim violence swept through central Burma in spring 2013, reportedly sparked by an argument at a gold shop and the killing of a Buddhist monk in Meiktila, Mandalay. Homes, mosques, and madrassas were destroyed, and over 100 people lost their lives. This report is the result of an investigation by a PHR team, undertaken shortly after the violence occurred.
President Obama is choosing an odd time to make history as the first US president to visit Burma. Ethnic violence continues to devastate Rakhine State in western Burma, conflict rages in northern Kachin State, and military officials responsible for some of the worst violence in the country continue to thrive in a climate of impunity.
PHR Urges US to Consider Ramifications of Inviting Burmese Military to Training Exercise (October 2012)
PHR is deeply troubled by media reports that members of Burma’s military could be invited to observe an upcoming US-Thai military joint training exercise. The exercise, to be held next year, would bring together participants from the US and the Thai armed forces as well as military representatives from several other Asian nations.