Possible elements of genocide in Myanmar

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Possible elements of genocide in Myanmar

During their visits, Emine and Mevlüt listened to the tale of woes from the displaced Rohingya, who described the horrific details of the recent army crackdown in Northern Rakhine state. In a report, United Nations investigators said such violations may have constituted crimes against humanity.

Rohingya refugees continue to flee Myanmar for Bangladesh even though both countries set up a timetable last month to allow them to start to return home, the United Nations refugee agency (UNHCR) said on Thursday.

The United Nations' High Commissioner for Human Rights says the mounting evidence of military-perpetrated atrocities against Rohingya Muslims could constitute worldwide criminal law's most serious charge.

Myanmar denies committing atrocities against the Rohingya.

Myanmar does not accept its jurisdiction, meaning the UN Security Council's unanimous support would be needed to force an investigation.

Marzuki Darusman, who heads the independent fact-finding mission, told the Human Rights Council by videoconference that his team has "not yet come to any conclusion on these issues".

It is estimated that more than 600,000 Rohingya have fled to neighbouring Bangladesh to escape the violence which has been escalating since the summer.

Earlier, U.N. human rights chief Zeid Ra'ad al-Hussein cited problems like segregation, killing by random firing of bullets, burning of houses with families inside, and rape targeting the Rohingya.

"Can anyone - can anyone - rule out that elements of genocide may be present?" he told the 47-member state forum.

MrZeid said no Rohingya should be sent back unless there was sustained human rights monitoring on the ground.

In the sprawling camps of southern Bangladesh, now home to over 800,000 Rohingya, many say they would prefer to remain there, because they do not trust Myanmar's assurances of safe return.

He was speaking at a special council session Tuesday on the Rohingya's plight.

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