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Rohingya refugee crisis: US exploring sanctions on Myanmar

News Agencies | Updated on: 24 October 2017, 15:56 IST

The United States is considering sanctions against Myanmar for its treatment of the Rohingya Muslims in restive Rakhine state.

In a statement, the US State Department said that Washington may use a human rights law to target those involved in the violence, which triggered a massive exodus and humanitarian crisis.

"We are exploring accountability mechanisms available under US law, including Global Magnitsky targeted sanctions," said US State Department Spokesperson Heather Nauert in a statement on Monday.

The Act gives the President the right to block or revoke the visas or impose property sanctions on them.

"It is imperative that any individuals or entities responsible for atrocities, including non-state actors and vigilantes, be held accountable," the statement further said.

The US has also announced that it will withdraw military assistance to Myanmar officers and units operating in the northern Rakhine region of Myanmar.

Since August 25, Myanmar's powerful army has launched a military campaign against the Rohingya.

According to various reports, Myanmar leader Aung San Suu Kyi has described military operations as a 'counterterrorism operation.'

More than 600,000 Rohingya have fled the country to walk by foot or sail in rickety boats to arrive in neighbouring Bangladesh.

Last week, US Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson said the US holds Myanmar's military leadership "accountable" for the Rohingya refugee crisis. 


First published: 24 October 2017, 15:56 IST