Editor’s Note: “Shirin Ebadi is the winner of the 2003 Nobel Peace Prize. Tawakkol Karman won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2011. The opinions in this commentary are those of the authors.
(CNN) Today, the investigation led by the UN Independent International Fact-Finding Mission on Myanmar presented its findings to the Human Rights Council.
The mission’s exhaustive report defines human rights violations and abuses committed in Kachin, Rakhine and Shan states as “shocking for their horrifying nature and ubiquity” and calls for the investigation and prosecution of senior military officials for genocide, war crimes, and crimes against humanity.
This report details what we heard and witnessed directly from Rohingya women when we traveled to the refugee camps of Kutapalong and Thyankhali in Bangladesh, in February this year: they and their communities have experienced murder, imprisonment, enforced disappearance, torture, rape and sexual slavery and other forms of sexual violence; persecution and enslavement.
More specifically, the report highlights the role and culpability of Commander-in-Chief Senior-General Min Aung Hlaing; and makes it clear that these systematic crimes followed a clear chain of command from the most senior levels of the Myanmar military.
The UN report highlights what the Rohingya people have been yelling from the rooftops: the current Rohingya crisis is more than a humanitarian catastrophe. It importantly underscores that there is sufficient information to warrant the investigation and prosecution of senior officials in the Tatmadaw chain of command “so that a competent court can determine their liability for genocide.”
Read the full Op-Ed here