Advisory board submits report on Rohingya to Myanmar government

Controversial advisory board submits report on Rohingya to Myanmar government 

A Rohingya boy cries as hundreds of Rohingya refugees walk through water in a paddy field at Bangladesh’s border as they flee from Budichong, Myanmar, after crossing the Naf river, Bangladesh 09 October 2017. International organizations have reported claims of human rights violations and summary executions allegedly carried out by the Myanmar army. EPA-EFE/FILE/ABIR ABDULLAH

Bangkok Desk, Aug 17 (efe-epa).- The Advisory Board for the Committee for Implementation of the Recommendations on Rakhine State, established by the Myanmar government to address the Rohingya refugee crisis, presented its final report at their last meeting amid criticisms and resignations of its members.

The chairman of the board, former Foreign Minister of Thailand Surakiart Sathirathai, submitted the report on Thursday to the de facto leader of the Myanmar government Aung San Suu Kyi, state media reported Friday without giving details about its content.

The advisory board was created to implement the recommendations of the commission led by former United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan to tackle violence and discrimination against the Muslim minority Rohingya in the western Rakhine State.

The recommendations were presented one day before an armed assault from Rohingya insurgency and the subsequent responses from the Myanmar Army, which led to the exodus of more than 700,000 people who fled to Bangladesh from what the UN describes as an “textbook example” of “ethnic cleansing.”

The submission of the report was made during the fourth and last meeting of the board and after two of its 10 members resigned during the last eight months as a result of frustration with its function.

The first member to resign was Suu Kyi’s old friend and former US Ambassador to the UN, Bill Richardson, who described the committee as a “whitewash” and “a cheerleading squad for government policy” and criticized Myanmar’s Nobel Peace Prize laureate for her lack of “moral leadership” amid the crisis.

Richardson’s resignation was followed by that of retired Thai ambassador Kobsak Chutikul, who justified his departure on the grounds of the panel’s ineffectiveness and the unwillingness of the Myanmar Army and government to find solutions.

This Aug. 25 will mark one year since the beginning of the Army’s last reprisal campaign against the Rohingya, a Muslim minority whose citizenship is rejected by the Myanmar state as it considers them illegal immigrants.

At the end of July, Myanmar appointed another commission to investigate complaints against the military.