In an overwhelming vote, US House declares crimes against Rohingyas as genocide

The US House of Representatives on Thursday in an overwhelming bipartisan vote of 394-1, in a non-binding resolution, declared the crimes against Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar as a genocide.

Such a move by the US House of Representatives comes months after the State Department released a report on alleged widespread acts of violence against the Rohingya in the northern Rakhine state of Myanmar, which the lawmakers rued had failed to label these atrocities as genocide.

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The atrocities have driven more than 7,00,000 Rohingya from their homes to Bangladesh, bringing the total Rohingya refugee population there to nearly 10 lakh.

“The United States has a moral obligation to call these crimes genocide. Failing to do so gives the perpetrators cover and hinders efforts to bring those accountable to justice. With this resolution, the House fulfils its part of that duty,” Congressman Ed Royce, Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, said.

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“The measure also accomplishes a number of other important goals: It provides a thorough accounting of the crisis, calls out the complicit Burmese government, urges the Secretary of State to join us in formally declaring genocide and promotes multilateral agreement on that declaration,” Royce said.

Following the resolution, Royce urged the US government to put more pressure on the Burmese government.

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