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Myanmar blocks UN rights investigator just before visit

Myanmar has told the UN independent investigator of human rights in the country that it would not cooperate with her or grant her access to the country for the rest of her tenure.

Myanmar’s leader Aung San Suu Kyi

Ms Yanghee Lee, UN special rapporteur, said in a statement that she had been due to visit in January to assess human rights across Myanmar, including abuses against Rohingya Muslims in Rakhine State.

“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 said.

Newsmen report that according to UN estimates, 436,000 Rohingya Muslims fled Buddhist-majority Myanmar since Aug. 25 when entire villages were destroyed in Myanmar’s Rakhine State as part of a military crackdown.

Grandi said the people he met, including those who had just arrived, were deeply traumatised by the violence they experienced before leaving for Bangladesh.

“I heard very harrowing stories of loss, of violence that they suffered,’’ he said.

He added that many women and children suffered physical and sexual assaults, intimidation and other forms of brutality.

“In Bangladesh, they are still exposed to enormous hardship.

“Aid agencies working in the region have been trying to budget resources for the next six month,” Grandi said.

NAN


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