Joint Statement: Rohingya organizations worldwide call for accountability for genocide and crimes against humanity in Myanmar

Rohingya refugees are resorting to increaingly desperate measures such as makeshift rafts to cross the Naf River to Bangladesh. © UNHCR/Andrew McConnell

Joint Statement
July 19, 2018 

Rohingya organizations worldwide call for accountability for genocide and crimes against humanity in Myanmar

We, the undersigned Rohingya organizations worldwide, call for accountability for genocide and crimes against humanity in Myanmar and for the international community to take action. The international community has failed us and needs to urgently reverse course. We believe it is imperative that the international community urgently address the human rights situation in Myanmar.

The new 160-page report by human rights group Fortify Rights, “They Gave Them Long Swords,” documents how the Myanmar military and authorities made systematic preparations to commit mass atrocity crimes against Rohingya communities during the weeks and months before Rohingya-militant attacks on August 25, 2017. 

Our organizations have documented how Myanmar authorities are responsible for human rights violations in Rakhine State including killings, rape, destruction of property and burning of villages, and avoidable deprivations in aid. The government denies Rohingya citizenship and denies the very existence of our ethnicity.

The Government of Myanmar also denies allegations of human rights violations in Rakhine State and refuses to cooperate with the U.N. Special Rapporteur on the human rights situation in Myanmar Yanghee Lee as well as the U.N. Fact-Finding Mission. The government also continues to restrict access for aid groups. 

Myanmar military and police officials are responsible for the atrocities in northern Rakhine State and should be brought to justice for genocide and crimes against humanity, including Commander-in-Chief Senior General Min Aung Hlaing. 

We believe Aung San Suu Kyi is also complicit in genocide and crimes against humanity against the Rohingya.

In 2016, the international community failed to act to stop the atrocities against the Rohingya, and in 2017, massive attacks ensued. The failures of the international community to date have created an environment for genocide. 

We support the call of the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights, Fortify Rights, and others for the U.N. Security Council to urgently refer Myanmar to the International Criminal Court for atrocity crimes, including genocide and crimes against humanity, against the Rohingya and other ethnic groups, including the Kachin and Shan people. U.N. Security Council member states should apply appropriate pressure—collectively and bilaterally—on any states who do not support a referral to the ICC in order to ensure a referral can take place.

We call on the Government of Myanmar to grant unfettered access to journalists, human rights monitors, and aid groups, and to amend the 1982 Citizenship Law without delay. 

We also call on the Government of Bangladesh to continue to provide protection and humanitarian access to Rohingya refugees, and to cooperate with international efforts to ensure justice and accountability in Myanmar. 


1. Arakan Rohingya Development Association – Australia (ARDA)
2. Arakan Rohingya National Organisation (ARNO)
3. British Rohingya Community in UK
4. Burmese Rohingya Association in Queensland-Australia (BRAQA)
5. Burmese Rohingya Association Japan (BRAJ)
6. Burmese Rohingya Community Australia (BRCA)
7. Burmese Rohingya Community in Denmark
8. Burmese Rohingya Organisation UK (BROUK)
9. Canadian Burmese Rohingya Organisation
10. Canadian Rohingya Development Initiative
11. European Rohingya Council (ERC)
12. Myanmar Ethnic Rohingya Human Rights Organisation in Malaysia (MERHROM)
13. Rohingya Advocacy Network in Japan
14. Rohingya American Society
15. Rohingya Arakanese Refugee Committee
16. Rohingya Association of Canada
17. Rohingya Community in Finland
18. Rohingya Community in Germany
19. Rohingya Community in Norway (RCN)
20. Rohingya Community in Sweden
21. Rohingya Community in Switzerland
22. Rohingya Community Ireland (RCI)
23. Rohingya Organisation Norway
24. Rohingya Society Malaysia (RSM)
25. Rohingya Society Netherlands
26. Swedish Rohingya Association (SRA)

For more information, please contact: 

Tun Khin (Mobile): +44 7888714866 
Nay San Lwin (Mobile): +49 69 26022349 
Zaw Min Htut (Mobile): +8180 30835327

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