'Can Anyone Rule Out Genocide' - UN Human Rights Chief

Restless Beings welcomes UN Human Rights Chief Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein’s remarks today – Tuesday 5th December 2017 regarding the on-going persecution of the Rohingya in Burma. In a Special Session of the UN Human Rights Council, Zeid  asked ‘can anyone rule out that elements of genocide may be present?’

It must be noted that when Zeid in September said he believed the Rohingya persecution amounted to ‘textbook example of ethnic cleansing’ many politicians across various international Government’s did the same.  Human rights campaigners for years have been claiming ‘Genocide’ and so Zeid’s use of the word must be welcomed.  It is hoped that consequentially other world leaders and individuals of high influence who until now felt uncomfortable about labelling the issue as genocide are emboldened to do so.

Genocide as a legal term naturally has legal implications and as such commits the international community into some form of action. Many Governments including the UK government has up to now called for various delegations and fact finding missions but whilst 625,000 have fled the terror they face in Burma such calls to action are virtually inefficient considering the scale of the human disaster that the world has been witnessing.

In an apparent rebuttal to the Pope and other leaders who have recently travelled to Burma and not used the term Rohingya with the Burmese authorities, Zeid said “Refusal by international as well as local actors to even name the Rohingyas as Rohingyas – to recognise them as a community and respect their right to self-identification – is yet another humiliation, and it creates a shameful paradox: they are denied a name, while being targeted for being who they are”

Restless Beings echoes his calls for world leaders “to take the appropriate action to stop this madness now”


For press enquiries, please contact:

Mabrur Ahmed (Director of Restless Beings)