Myanmar Regime Committed Almost 2,800 War Crimes in Last Six Months: NUG

By The Irrawaddy 13 June 2022

Myanmar’s junta committed almost 2,800 war crimes across the country in the last six months, according to the parallel civilian National Unity Government (NUG).

The NUG’s Ministry of Home Affairs and Immigration said that from December 1 to May 31, regime forces committed 2,778 war crimes including arbitrary killings, extrajudicial executions, the use of torture, using civilians as human shields, air and artillery strikes on civilian targets, the looting and burning of houses and the use of sexual violence.

Some 12,719 houses and religious building have been destroyed by junta forces, causing estimated losses of 241 million kyats (US$6.9 million).

Last Friday, the ministry also said that the regime had conducted 910 arrests and carried out 479 arson attacks, 346 murders, 336 attacks, 226 robberies and 101 cases of torture in the same six month period.

Regime forces also committed 10 cases of sexual violence, as well as 27 instances of using civilian detainees as human shields to deter attacks by resistance groups.

Sagaing Region, a stronghold of the resistance movement, suffered the most recording a total of 1,178 war crimes, followed by Magwe Region with 537 cases and Mandalay with 234.

Junta arson attacks also targeted Sagaing the most, with some 8,933 houses being lost, followed by Magwe with 2,168 and Chin State with 1,332, according to the NUG’s Ministry of Home Affairs and Immigration.

The ministry said it has collected evidence of the military regime’s war crimes and that its priority is to hold those responsible accountable for their crimes.

People are being urged to report junta war crimes to police forces and People’s Administration Groups operating under the NUG, which is working with local and international organizations to hold the regime responsible for its atrocities.

“Everyone who committed war crimes must be held to account whatever the situation,” said the NUG.

In early June, authorities in Turkey initiated a preliminary investigation into members of the regime, including coup leader Senior General Min Aung Hlaing, concerning a criminal complaint filed by the Myanmar Accountability Project (MAP), a UK-based nongovernmental organization.

In late March, MAP filed a criminal case with the public prosecutor’s office in Istanbul, Turkey against junta leaders over the use of torture in the military interrogation center in Yangon.

As of June 10, over 1,900 people have been killed by regime forces and more than 14,000 people, including democratically-elected lawmakers, have been arrested or detained since last year’s coup, said the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners.