Amnesty International has launched a campaign in which posters placed around New York City declare Myanmar military chief Senior General Min Aung Hlaing “wanted for mass murder”.
The posters have been plastered on sidewalks on 30 locations around the city in order to grab the attention of world leaders who are in the city to attend the 73rd UN General Assembly.
“Senior General Min Aung Hlaing is responsible for overseeing crimes against humanity in Myanmar. He was top of the chain of command during the Myanmar army’s vicious campaign of murder, rape, torture and village burning which forced hundreds of thousands from their homes,” said Kumi Naidoo, Amnesty International’s secretary general.
“His army has also committed war crimes against ethnic minority civilians in northern Myanmar, where conflicts continue to rage. We want world leaders to have his face in their minds this week when they discuss next steps for accountability,” he said.
Min Aung Hlaing was among the 13 Myanmar military officials named by Amnesty in June as one who had control over the atrocities committed by security forces against Rohingya communities in Aug. 2017. In that report, Amnesty alleged that the senior general was involved in the decision to deploy combat units to northern Rakhine State in the days before the mass displacement of Rohingya began, and he also praised the military’s “brilliant efforts to restore regional peace” during a visit to the area in Sept. 2107.
“For too long Min Aung Hlaing has managed to stay out of the spotlight and escape international attention, despite overseeing the horrendous crimes against the Rohingya,” Naidoo said. “It’s time to expose those responsible for these atrocities, and make sure they are held to account.”
On Thursday, the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva adopted a resolution to form a body that will collect and analyze evidence in the event of criminal proceedings against Myanmar’s military leaders for genocide or crimes against humanity.
At the General Assembly in New York, Myanmar has received criticism from the leaders of Malaysia and Turkey, as well as from the UN’s deputy humanitarian chief Ursula Mueller.