Alwaght- Amnesty International has called for an independent investigation into rights abuses in Myanmar's Rakhine state after the Buddhist regime’s army admitted its troops were involved in the murder of 10 Rohingya Muslims.
The remains of the victims were found in December in a mass grave outside Inn Din, a village in the Maungdaw township.
In a Facebook post on Wednesday, Min Aung Hlaing, the military's commander in chief, said soldiers and villagers had confessed to killing 10 Muslims on September 2.
James Gomez, Amnesty's regional director for Southeast Asia and the Pacific, called the admission a positive development, but said it was "only the tip of the iceberg".
It "warrants serious independent investigation into what other atrocities were committed amid the ethnic cleansing campaign that has forced out hundreds of thousands of Rohingya Muslims from Rakhine State since last August," he said on Thursday.
The army's unprecedented acknowledgement came after months of denial of any wrongdoing towards the persecuted Rohingya minority.
Almost 870,000 Rohingya Muslims have fled to Bangladesh, including about 660,000 who arrived after Aug. 25, when the Myanmar army started a new round of violence against this minority group. Last week, Doctors Without Borders, also known by its French acronym MSF said that at least 6,700 members of the persecuted Rohingya Muslim minority group were killed in ongoing state-sponsored ethnic only in a period of one month beginning on August 25.
UN investigators have heard Rohingya testimony of a “consistent, methodical pattern of killings, torture, rape and arson”.
Last month UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra‘ad al-Hussein said genocide charges could be brought against Myanmar following the country’s campaign against the country's Rohingya Muslims.
He noted that attacks on the Rohingya had been “well thought out and planned” and he had asked Myanmar’s de facto leader Aung San Suu Kyi to do more to stop the military atrocities.
Zeid has already called the campaign “a textbook example of ethnic cleansing” and asked rhetorically if anyone could rule out “elements of genocide”.