Find a Security Clearance Job!

Military


Bureau of Special Operations No. 3

Ethnic cleansing against the Rohingya minority in Rakhine State occurred during 2017. In early August 2017 some security forces deployed throughout northern Rakhine State, committing enforced disappearances and arbitrary arrests and displacing villagers, the majority of whom were Rohingya. On 25 August 2018, the Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (ARSA) claimed responsibility for coordinated attacks against 30 security outposts in northern Rakhine State, killing 12 security personnel. Augmented security forces, as well as local vigilante groups acting independently or in concert with security forces, then reportedly committed widespread atrocities against Rohingya villagers, including extrajudicial killings, disappearances, rape, torture, arbitrary arrest, and burning of tens of thousands of homes and some religious structures and other buildings. This displaced more than 655,000 Rohingya to neighboring Bangladesh as of December, as well as an unknown number within Rakhine State, and more than 20,000 villagers from other ethnic groups, many of whom were evacuated by the security forces.

In Rakhine State, following the August 25 coordinated attacks by ARSA, security forces, aided in some cases by vigilantes, reportedly committed arbitrary and unlawful killings against Rohingya villagers throughout northern Rakhine State. On August 30, in Tula Toli Village (also known as Min Gyi), security forces assigned to the armys Western Command reportedly committed a massacre. One report indicated that all male Rohingya villagers who had not fled ahead of the militarys arrival, as well as some women and children, were unlawfully executed. The military and some government officials denied such abuses occurred and took no steps to seek accountability for the perpetrators.

In the weeks prior to the August 25 attacks, there were reports police arrested Rohingya men from 15 to 40 years old without charges or warrants due to purported links to ARSA, and several of those detained reportedly were not heard from since. Family members who went to police stations to inquire about their disappeared relatives whereabouts were not provided with any relevant information. On August 21, military soldiers and police officers reportedly arrested 10 persons from Tha Man Thar Village in Maungdaw Township. The military later released four and told family members of the other six that police knew nothing about their whereabouts. After August 25, the pace of enforced disappearances reportedly increased. The military and some government officials denied such abuses occurred and took no steps to seek accountability for the perpetrators.

The law prohibits torture; however, members of security forces reportedly tortured, raped, beat, and otherwise abused prisoners, detainees, and other citizens and stateless persons in incidents not related to armed conflict. Such incidents occurred, for example, in Rakhine and Kachin States.

Security forces reportedly subjected detainees to harsh interrogation techniques designed to intimidate and disorient, including severe beatings and deprivation of food, water, and sleep. Human rights groups continued to report incidents of torture in ethnic minority areas. Authorities generally took no action to investigate incidents or punish alleged perpetrators.

There were widespread reports of torture of Rohingya villagers, including children, in northern Rakhine State, including beatings, rape, and killings in front of family members. Rifle butts were allegedly used to hit Rohingya villagers stomachs and heads, and refugee testimonials referred to the military, sometimes jointly with ethnic Rakhine Buddhists, breaking legs, arms, and ribs of fleeing Rohingya villagers.

In January 2018 a mobile phone video taken by a member of the security forces during clearance operations in northern Rakhine State in November 2016 and posted on YouTube showed police beating civilian Rohingya. The government launched an investigation into police misconduct. Police reportedly prosecuted four persons and demoted one officer for the abuses recorded in the video, but details regarding the results of any investigation were not made public.

There were widespread reports of rapes of Rohingya women, children, and at least one man in northern Rakhine State by military forces and Border Guard Police. Most documented rapes were gang rapes, and many were mass rapes. The UN special representative on sexual violence assessed sexual violence was used as a calculated tool of terror aimed at the extermination and removal of the Rohingya as a group. One woman from Chut Pyin Village (also known as Shoppara) reported five soldiers raped her on August 26, the day before her village was burned by security forces. She reported soldiers stabbed her in the side with a knife during the rape while threatening to shoot her. Authorities failed to conduct a credible investigation into these allegations.

The United Nations, media, human rights groups, and Bangladesh border authorities reported security forces planted land mines along the border of Bangladesh in northern Rakhine State in September, with some suggesting the mines were planted to prevent Rohingya refugees from returning. Sources alleged at least nine internally displaced persons (IDPs) died from wounds characteristic of landmine injuries while fleeing northern Rakhine State to Bangladesh.

Lieutenant General Aung Kyaw Zaw was the Commander of the Bureau of Special Operations No. 3 of the Myanmar Armed Forces (Tatmadaw) from August 2015 to the end of 2017. The Bureau of Special Operations No. 3 oversaw the Western Command and, in that context, Lieutenant General Aung Kyaw Zaw is responsible for the atrocities and serious human rights violations committed against Rohingya population in Rakhine State by the Western Command during that period. These include unlawful killings, sexual violence and systematic burning of Rohingya houses and buildings.

In his former role as chief of the Burmese Armys Western command, Maung Maung Soe oversaw the military operation in Burmas Rakhine State responsible for widespread human rights abuse against Rohingya civilians in response to attacks by the Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army. The Secretary of State determined on November 22 that the situation in northern Rakhine state in Burma constituted ethnic cleansing. The United States Government examined credible evidence of Maung Maung Soes activities, including allegations against Burmese security forces of extrajudicial killings, sexual violence, and arbitrary arrest as well as the widespread burning of villages.

Security operations led to hundreds of thousands of Rohingya refugees fleeing across Burmas border with Bangladesh. In August 2017, witnesses reportedly described mass killings and arson attacks by the Burmese Army and Burmese Border Guard Police, both then under Maung Maung Soes command in northern Rakhine State. In August 2017, soldiers described as being from the Western Command allegedly entered a village and reportedly separated the inhabitants by gender. According to witnesses, soldiers opened fire on the men and older boys and committed multiple acts of rape. Many of the women and younger children were reportedly also shot. Other witnesses described soldiers setting huts on fire with villagers inside.

Brigadier General Aung Aung was the Commander of the 33rd Light Infantry Division of the Myanmar Armed Forces (Tatmadaw). In that context, he was responsible for the atrocities and serious human rights violations committed against Rohingya population in Rakhine State in the second half of 2017 by the 33rd Light Infantry Division. These include unlawful killings, sexual violence and systematic burning of Rohingya houses and buildings.

Major General Khin Maung Soe was the Commander of the 15th Light Infantry Division of the Myanmar Armed Forces (Tatmadaw), under which Infantry Battalion No. 564. In that context, he was responsible for the atrocities and serious human rights violations committed against Rohingya population in Rakhine State in the second half of 2017 by the 15th Light Infantry Division, in particular by Infantry Battalion No. 564. These include unlawful killings, sexual violence and systematic burning of Rohingya houses and buildings.

Brigadier General Thura San Lwin was the Commander of the Border Guard Police from October 2016 until early October 2017. In that context, he is responsible for the atrocities and serious human rights violations committed against Rohingya population in Rakhine State by the Border Guard Police during that period. These include unlawful killings and systematic burning of Rohingya houses and buildings.

Thant Zin Oo is the Commander of the 8th Security Police Battalion. In that context, he is responsible for the atrocities and serious human rights violations committed against Rohingya population in Rakhine State in the second half of 2017 by the 8th Security Police Battalion. The serious human rights violations include unlawful killings and systematic burning of Rohingya houses and buildings. Those violations were conducted in conjunction with and in direct support of the 33rd Light Infantry Division of the Myanmar Armed Forces (Tatmadaw) led by Brigadier General Aung Aung. Thant Zin Oo is therefore associated with listed person, Brigadier General Aung Aung.



NEWSLETTER
Join the GlobalSecurity.org mailing list