Thursday, January 17, 2019 | ePaper
9 UNSC members ask to discuss Myanmar inquiry
The chair of a United Nations inquiry that accused Myanmar's military of genocide is likely to brief the Security Council this month after Britain, France, the United States and six other members requested the meeting, diplomats said on Tuesday.
The move comes as global pressure mounts on Myanmar to act on accountability after a Myanmar military crackdown in the western state of Rakhine last year drove some 700,000 of the largely stateless minority over the border into Bangladesh. The crackdown followed attacks by Rohingya militants on security posts. Myanmar has denied committing atrocities against the Rohingya, saying its military carried out justifiable actions against militants. The UN inquiry's report, released in August, called for the UN Security Council to impose an arms embargo on Myanmar, impose targeted sanctions and set up an ad hoc tribunal to try suspects or refer them to the International Criminal Court. Diplomats say council veto powers China and Russia are likely to protect Myanmar from any push for such measures. However, they cannot block the briefing on the UN report because a minimum nine of the 15 council members support the move, which cannot be vetoed. Diplomats say China and Russia believe the report should first be addressed by the UN General Assembly's Third Committee, which deals with human rights. The letter requesting the briefing was signed by Britain, France, the Netherlands, Sweden, Poland, Peru, Kuwait, Ivory Coast and the United States.