On Thursday, hundreds of thousands of ethnic minority Rohingya refugees observed the fifth anniversary of their migration from Myanmar to Bangladesh, as the US, the European Union, and other Western governments committed to assist the pursuit of justice in international courts.

Thousands of refugees gathered in Bangladesh’s Cox’s Bazar district to observe Genocide Remembrance Day, with speakers asking safety from persecution within Myanmar so they can return home.

A refugee in the Kutupalong camp sang a song about their journey to Bangladesh five years ago, overcoming bullets, trees, and the sea. Many people in the audience sobbed as they listened.

The United Kingdom imposed new sanctions against enterprises tied to Myanmar’s military, which rules the country, on Thursday.

Star Sapphire Group of Companies, International Gateways Group, and Sky One Construction are among those sanctioned in an effort to limit the military’s access to armaments and revenue.

Amanda Milling, Minister for Asia, also reaffirmed the United Kingdom’s intention to intervene in a November 2019 action brought by The Gambia seeking justice in the International Court of Justice, the United Nations’ main judicial instrument. The lawsuit will establish whether Myanmar violated the Genocide Convention by conducting military operations against Rohingya Muslims in 2016 and 2017.

Over several decades, more than one million Rohingya refugees have fled to Bangladesh from Myanmar, including around 740,000 who crossed the border beginning in August 2017 when the Myanmar military launched a “clearance operation” against them in response to attacks by a rebel group. Since a military coup last year, the safety situation in Myanmar has deteriorated, and attempts to return them have failed.

Source: AP News


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