September 9, 2013

This report by The Sentinel Project assesses the risk of genocide against Muslim minorities in Burma and has found the risk level to be high in light of intensified persecution.

The purpose of the research was to explore the threat against the Rohingya and provide advanced warning in the event that genocide was found to be imminent. The result of this work has shown the Rohingya to be at a high risk of genocide, whether by violent extermination or by the slow destruction of the group through isolation and starvation.

While much media attention has emphasized the role of the allegedly “grassroots” 969 movement, which aims to boycott Muslim businesses and customers, the Sentinel Project has found the reformist government, local governments, and Burmese security forces to also be either complicit or actively involved in ethnic cleansing campaigns.

Burma currently presents a textbook case for a country on the brink of genocide. There are many key indicators of genocidal intent, such as the Burmese government’s attempts to limit reproduction amongst the Rohingya ethnic group; proposed restrictions on intermarriage between Muslims and Buddhists; continued employment of hate speech against this minority (both Rohingyas specifically and Muslims in general); and forced registration of Rohingyas under a “foreign” ethnic identity, thus attempting to provide documentary denial of the existence of the group.

The Sentinel Project’s risk assessment concludes that, apart from outright violent extermination (i.e. mass killing) of the Muslim Rohingya minority, two conditions would need to be observed in order to declare the campaign against the Rohingya genocide: (1) continued ethnic cleansing and ghettoization of the Rohingya and other Muslims, and (2) continued isolation and deprivation of internally displaced persons (IDP) camps.

Download this report


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