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Myanmar Muslims hope UN envoy’s visit will bring change

Muslim villagers in western Myanmar’s troubled Rakhine state said Sunday that they hope positive change will result from a U.N. envoy’s visit to the region, where soldiers are accused of widespread abuses against minority Muslims, including murder, rape and the burning of thousands of homes.

 

 

Muslim villagers in western Myanmar’s troubled Rakhine state said Sunday that they hope positive change will result from a U.N. envoy’s visit to the region, where soldiers are accused of widespread abuses against minority Muslims, including murder, rape and the burning of thousands of homes.

U.N. Special Rapporteur on Human Rights Yanghee Lee concluded a three-day visit Sunday to probe the situation in northern Rakhine, where an army crackdown has driven an estimated 65,000 Muslim ethnic Rohingya to flee across the border to Bangladesh in the past three months.

“We really hope that her visit brings a positive change for Rohingya and we hope to gain our human rights,” a displaced Rohingya man living temporarily in Kyee Kan Pyin village said on condition of anonymity due to security reasons.

The crackdown began in October after nine policemen were killed in attacks by a shadowy group along the border. The government and the army have rejected the accusations of abuses and killings, saying recently that they have simply been conducting a “clearance operation” in the region.

 

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