We're Live Bangla Wednesday, February 24, 2021

Time for the US to step up in holding Myanmar accountable

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It is welcome news to see that the incoming Biden administration in the United States is set to launch a review of Myanmar’s persecution of the Rohingya, and determine whether genocide was committed.

At this point, few will doubt that the atrocities committed by the Myanmar army against its own Rohingya people, with tens of thousands killed, and hundreds of thousands forced to flee their homes, crossing over to Bangladesh, qualify as genocide.

Bangladesh has gone above and beyond in its display of humanity, housing these Rohingya refugees within its borders. However, despite Bangladesh straining its own resources to provide for the Rohingya, it has been extremely frustrating to see the lack of support from the international community with regards to providing justice for the Rohingya.

Over and over again, despite repeated pleas, the international community has turned a blind eye to the issue, with Myanmar being let off the hook. With that in mind, given the directive of the Biden administration, this hopefully will open avenues to others from the international community finally looking into Myanmar’s actions, and holding them accountable for their actions. The US, as the world’s military and economic superpower, can play a major role in holding Myanmar accountable.

What must also be addressed is the long-term fate of the Rohingya refugees and their eventual repatriation to Myanmar. As things currently stand, Myanmar has shown little interest in creating a safe environment to take back their own people. Yet, keeping the Rohingya within Bangladesh is simply not a sustainable solution in the long run.

Therefore, we welcome the Biden administration to do a thorough investigation and put pressure on Myanmar for greater transparency. This should encourage others in the international community to do their part, and finally, the Rohingya can begin to see some semblance of justice.