Please Update your browser

Your browser is out of date, and may not be compatible with our website. A list of the most popular web browsers can be found below.
Just click on the icons to get to the download page.

Jakarta Post
The Jakarta Post
Video Weather icon 30°C
DKI Jakarta, Indonesia
weather-icon
30°C Partly Cloudy

Dry and mostly cloudy throughout the day.

  • weather-icon

    Wed

    26℃ - 32℃

  • weather-icon

    Thu

    25℃ - 32℃

  • weather-icon

    Fri

    25℃ - 31℃

  • weather-icon

    Sat

    26℃ - 30℃

Myanmar bans UN rights envoy from country

  •  

    Agence France-Presse

Geneva, Switzerland | Wed, December 20, 2017 | 06:46 pm
 Myanmar bans UN rights envoy from country Rohingya Muslim refugees wait for a consultation outside a clinic run by the International Organisation for Migration (IOM) in Leda refugee camp near the Bangladeshi town of Teknaf on September 18, 2017. Pressure grew on Myanmar September 18 as a rights group urged world leaders to impose sanctions on its military, which is accused of driving out more than 410,000 Rohingya Muslims in an orchestrated (AFP/Dominique Faget )

The UN's rights envoy for Myanmar said Wednesday the government had banned her from the country, adding her exclusion suggests something "awful" is happening in Rakhine state.

UN Special Rapporteur Yanghee Lee had been due to visit Myanmar in January to assess the state of human rights across the country including in Rakhine, which was plunged into crisis by a military crackdown on the Rohingya minority Muslim community in late August. 

Some 655,000 of them have fled for Bangladesh since then, with accounts of arson, murder and rape at the hands of soldiers and vigilante mobs in the mainly Buddhist country.

The UN has accused troops of ethnic cleansing and possible "elements of genocide" against the Rohingya -- charges the government vigorously denies as it faces intense global outrage.

"I am puzzled and disappointed by this decision by the Myanmar government," said Lee, who is required to go to the country twice a year in order to report to the Human Rights Council and the UN General Assembly.

"This declaration of non-cooperation with my mandate can only be viewed as a strong indication that there must be something terribly awful happening in Rakhine, as well as in the rest of the country," she added.

The South Korean academic said she was told the decision was based on a statement she made after her last visit to Myanmar in July, in which she sharply criticised the government's rights record and its treatment of the Rohingya.

At the time the government criticized the statement as "biased and unfair". 

The UN confirmed Myanmar had withdrawn all cooperation for the duration of Lee's tenure.

Myanmar's government spokesman Zaw Htay said Lee had been barred because she was not unbiased.

"She is not impartial and objective while conducting her work. There is no trust on her," the spokesman said.

Lee, who has visited Myanmar six times since 2014, has consistently sounded the alarm over the persecution of the Rohingya.

The stateless group has been targeted by bouts of violence and systematically stripped of legal rights in recent decades. 

But the latest crisis is the worst to rip through Rakhine state in years.

Myanmar has blocked journalists and investigators -- including a UN fact-finding team -- from independently accessing the conflict zone.

NEWS PULSE

Join the discussions