International Human Rights Day & armed conflicts in Myanmar

Myanmar Spring Chronicle – December 09 Scenes
MoeMaKa, December 10 2022

International Human Rights Day & armed conflicts in Myanmar


International Human Rights Day, which falls on December 10 every year, is a day celebrated to recognize that human rights are fundamental rights since birth and a day celebrated with the goal of respecting fundamental human rights for every walks of life. 


On such a commemorative day, it is saddened by the fact that human rights violations are happening every minute, every hour, and every day in all parts of Myanmar. Human rights violations have been occurring since before February 1, 2021, and after the military coup, there has been a rapid escalation in violations in various forms.


In cases of human rights violations suffered by minorities and locals in armed conflict areas before February 1, 2021, the causes are restrictions according to the existing 2008 constitution, existing criminal laws and practices that are not written and approved as law, immigration laws that have been in place for decades, and gender-based practices.


After the military coup, in addition to the above-mentioned human rights violations, violent crackdowns on armed conflicts, the civil disobedience movement in urban and anti-coup protests, family members being held hostage, and arrests and interrogations of political opponents who are not members of the armed organizations by the military council have gotten worse.


After that, there are deaths during the interrogation or after being beaten and tortured for protesting in prison, assassinations of accused civilians who are not members of the armed forces as being informants or pillars by armed groups, shootings and killings of women and minor children, and the arresting, torturing, and killing of the rest of the family members just because one of them was involved in political activities. Since the above incidents, mass arrests and killings of civilians have been reported in the news almost every day.


Even before the coup, minority rights and civil rights were banned, and the Rohingya issue, which forced Rohingya to live in segregated and restricted areas such as refugee camps without the right to travel and stay where they wanted, is also a violation of human rights. The 2017 incident, which was considered genocide by the international community, is still being heard in the International Court of Justice.


Every day, houses in ethnic areas and central Myanmar, such as Sagaing and Magway, are burned down. And the torturing and killing of people with the accusation of being members of the armed forces, as well as encouraging and supporting them, are happening almost every day.


In the ethnic areas and Sagaing and Magway Divisions in central Myanmar, houses are being burned down every day. Tortures and killings are occurring almost every day with the accusation of being a member of the armed forces, encouraging or supporting them.


The killings, torture, and arrests happening everywhere over time are too frequent to describe them all in the news. As organizations that record human rights violations, the difficult situation of recording violations by both sides will be a practical problem to be faced.


Almost every armed organization commits threats against civilians and oppressed the resistance by arresting or killing them. The only difference is that there is a large number of widespread perpetrations versus a small number of perpetrations. As armed organizations, most of them have abandoned the international laws and ethical standards that should be practiced for unarmed civilians.


Human rights violations committed by the other armed groups are documented by human rights violation monitoring organizations against that groups. However, they do not want to record and hide the human rights violations committed by the armed organizations they support. 


In a time like this, only events that appear in the news can be known by the public. Human rights violations that are not reported as news might be due to the fact that the suffering people do not dare to speak out under the influence of armed groups and powerful governance mechanisms. One day, there may still be demands for justice for the unjust killings.


All in all, it is a sad situation that people in Myanmar who are suffering from human rights violations are not in a position to speak out about their human rights violations on International Human Rights Day.