Myanmar activists, victims file prison criticism in Germany over alleged atrocities

BANGKOK (Reuters) – Myanmar activists and 16 alleged victims of abuse have filed a prison criticism in Germany, accusing high generals of instigating genocide in opposition to Rohingya Muslims and different atrocities since a navy coup two years in the past.

The submitting is the newest in a sequence of worldwide authorized efforts to attempt to maintain the Myanmar navy accountable for alleged atrocities in opposition to the nation’s Rohingya minority and democracy supporters and civilians against the coup.

Fortify Rights, a human rights group backing the criticism, mentioned Germany was picked due to its recognition of the precept of “common jurisdiction”, which holds {that a} nationwide courtroom can attempt people accused of great worldwide crimes.

“The criticism gives new proof proving that the Myanmar navy systematically killed, raped, tortured, imprisoned, disappeared, persecuted, and dedicated different acts that quantity to genocide, crimes in opposition to humanity, and battle crimes,” Matthew Smith, chief govt officer and co-founder at Fortify Rights, informed a information convention in Bangkok.

A spokesman for Myanmar’s navy authorities didn’t reply a name in search of touch upon the criticism filed in Germany. The navy has previously denied rights abuses.

Fortify Rights hopes German authorities will take up the criticism and launch an investigation.

A German courtroom final 12 months jailed a Syrian ex-intelligence officer for all times for homicide, rape and crimes in opposition to humanity, marking the primary conviction for state-backed torture dedicated throughout Syria’s civil battle.

The German embassy in Myanmar couldn’t instantly be reached for remark.

The 16 particular person complainants within the Myanmar submitting embody ethnic Rohingya and others who survived or witnessed crimes in Myanmar because the coup, Fortify Rights mentioned.


The Worldwide Court docket of Justice has been listening to allegations that Myanmar dedicated genocide in a case introduced by Gambia after tons of of hundreds of Rohingya fled to Bangladesh to flee a Myanmar navy offensive launched in August 2017.

Final 12 months, one other civil society group, the Myanmar Accountability Mission, mentioned Turkish authorities had initiated a preliminary investigation after it filed a case in opposition to members of the Myanmar junta over alleged atrocities because the coup.

Within the case of the Rohingya, Myanmar authorities have beforehand mentioned safety forces had been finishing up reputable operations in opposition to militants who attacked police posts.

The junta has additionally denied the navy had carried out atrocities because the coup, disputing casualty figures given by activists and terming opponents “terrorists”.

Akila Radhakrishnan, president of the U.S.-based World Justice Heart, welcomed the submitting of the criticism in Germany saying that, together with different accountability processes, it might assist “pierce the entire impunity the navy has been afforded for a lot too lengthy”.

The navy dominated the previous British colony with an iron fist for years earlier than a decade of tentative reform from 2011, throughout which Nobel Peace Prize laureate Aung San Suu Kyi led a civilian authorities.

Suu Kyi has been in detention since her authorities was overthrown in 2021.

Fortify Rights is an impartial non-profit organisation based mostly in Southeast Asia and based in 2013, funded by donations from Europe, Asia and the USA, together with from non-public foundations.

(Reporting by Panu Wongcha-um and Poppy McPherson in Bangkok; Writing by Ed Davies; Enhancing by Robert Birsel)

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