Top UN human rights official denounces 'textbook' ethnic cleansing in Myanmar

Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights arrives at the 36th Session of the Human Rights Council at the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland, on Sept 11, 2017.
Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights arrives at the 36th Session of the Human Rights Council at the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland, on Sept 11, 2017. PHOTO: REUTERS

GENEVA (Reuters) - The top UN human rights official on Monday (Sept 11) denounced Myanmar's "brutal security operation" against Muslim Rohingyas in Rakhine state, which he said was "clearly disproportionate" to insurgent attacks carried out last month.

Mr Zeid Ra'ad al-Hussein, addressing the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva, said that more than 270,000 people had fled to Bangladesh, with more trapped on the border, amid reports of the burning of villages and extrajudicial killings.

"I call on the government to end its current cruel military operation, with accountability for all violations that have occurred, and to reverse the pattern of severe and widespread discrimination against the Rohingya population," Mr Zeid said.

"The situation seems a textbook example of ethnic cleansing."