United Nations presses Myanmar to probe atrocities against Rohingya

The report was published on Friday. We will be immediately investigating these allegations through the investigation commission led by Vice-President U Myint Swe.

"The killing of people as they prayed, fished to feed their families or slept in their homes, the brutal beating of children as young as two and an elderly woman aged 80 - the perpetrators of these violations, and those who ordered them, must be held accountable", High Commissioner Zeid said in the report.

"We are still hoping with all our hearts that they will eventually allow us to visit Sittwe and distribute the aid ourselves", said the mission chief, Abdul Azeez Abdul Rahim.

The plight of the stateless Rohingya, of whom some 1.1 million live in apartheid-like conditions in Rakhine, has always been a source of friction between Myanmar and Bangladesh.

The government, led by Nobel laureate Aung San Suu Kyi, has said the allegations are invented and has resisted mounting worldwide pressure to protect the minority.

It made the allegations in a damning report compiled after interviews with more than 200 Rohingya refugees who fled from Myanmar to Bangladesh.

Many Rohingya were reportedly hoping that Suu Kyi, a Nobel Peace Prize victor, would work to restore their rights.

More news: Ancient 'lost continent' fragment discovered in the Indian Ocean

It further noted that according to reports, operations by security forces in the area have continued into January 2017, although their intensity and frequency may have reduced. The UN has the indisputable evidence, it must now follow through.

"The "area clearance operations" have likely resulted in hundreds of deaths and have led to an estimated 66,000 people fleeing into Bangladesh and 22,000 being internally displaced", the new United Nations report said. Of 101 women interviewed, 52 said they had been raped or experienced sexual violence from the security forces.

Is there global support for the Rohingya?

In the past few months, security forces in Myanmar have accelerated efforts to clear the ethnic group from the country's borders - in a campaign of "area clearance operations" - to historic levels in terms of both scale and brutality, Foreign Policy reports.

The ship is expected to arrive in Yangon on February 9 where it will unload 500 tonnes of supplies, organisers said.

The report was based on interviews with 204 victims located across the border, in Bangladesh.

"The ship is expected to reach Yangon, Myanmar on Wednesday (Feb 8)", he said, adding that it would spend about a day there before heading to Bangladesh to drop off aid at several Rohingya refugee camps there.

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