Myanmar military top brass must face justice: Rights body

A Rohingya mother and child in Bangladesh

The list also includes Lt. Gen. Aung Kyaw Zaw, commander of the Bureau of Special Operations No. 3; Major Aung Myo Thu, a field commander with the 33rd Light Infantry Division; Major General Maung Maung Soe, commander of the army's Western Command, which oversees Rakhine State; and Brigadier General Thura San Lwin, commander of the Border Guard Police during the time of the alleged crimes.

Myanmar has rejected most accusations of wrongdoing and has said it launched a legitimate counter-insurgency operation after attacks against its military by Rohingya militants last August.

The seven were sanctioned "because of their involvement in or association with atrocities and serious human rights violations committed against the Rohingya population in Rakhine State in the second half of 2017", the EU Council said in a statement.

Top Myanmar military officials should be tried for crimes against humanity for a systematic attack on Rohingya Muslims, Amnesty International says.

The government statement also said that Lieutenant General Aung Kyaw Zaw - commander of the bureau of special operations and also on the European Union list - was permitted to resign in May for health reasons and "weakness in serving duty".

The Tatmadaw's statement said Major General Maung Maung Soe, who is among seven military officers on the European Union's list, was sacked on Monday.

In a rare example of Myanmar bowing to pressure from the west over the actions of the military, the government responded to the sanctions with an announcement that Maj Gen Maung Maung Soe was being removed from his position.

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The U.S.is also ceasing the issuance of visas to current and former senior leaders of the Myanmar military.

Human rights lawyer Thein Than Oo echoed the government's stance on the ICC, telling RFA, "As Myanmar is non-state party to the ICC. we would say the ICC has no jurisdiction to prosecute Myanmar".

Annan's spokesman referred questions to the Myanmar government.

"The ethnic cleansing of the Rohingya population was achieved by a relentless and systematic campaign in which the Myanmar security forces unlawfully killed thousands of Rohingya, including young children", said the report.

Two Reuters journalists were jailed while reporting the story and remain in prison in Yangon, where they face up to 14 years behind bars for violating Myanmar's Official Secrets Act.

Under Canadian law, the sanctions freeze the assets of the people involved and prohibit most business dealings with them. "99th - famed for their brutal counterinsurgency campaigns against this nation's many ethnic minorities". "Their ensuing crackdown drove 700,000 Rohingya into neighboring Bangladesh", Reuters reported. "I can not control my patriotic urge for revenge". He later told Reuters he did not shoot or kill anyone during his Rakhine deployment.

The chairman of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) on Tuesday arrived in Myanmar's restive western state of Rakhine as part of a humanitarian trip.

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