whatever they want to "stop terrorism,"
which in this case has included rape, arson,
and mass murder toward all civilians.
LINDLEY: Do you see the crimes suffered
by the Rohingya as “ethnic cleansing”
or the more severe crime of “genocide”?
PAULOSE: The United Nations
leadership has called it ethnic cleansing.
Now various parts of the international
community are slowly starting to use
the word genocide.
I do not see ethnic cleansing
LINDLEY: Why is it important to
as an appropriate term to describe
these events, and the term is still
the subject of debate among legal
scholars. Ethnic cleansing is not an
independent crime under international
law. The U.N. Commission of Experts
defines ethnic cleansing as "a
purposeful policy designed by one
ethnic or religious group to remove
by violent and terror-inspiring means
the civilian population of another
ethnic or religious group from certain
geographic areas." The International
Criminal Court incorporates these
elements of ethnic cleansing in
genocide, crimes against humanity,
and war crimes.
describe the crimes against the
Rohingya in Myanmar as genocide
rather than ethnic cleansing?
PAULOSE: Genocide is an
internationally recognized crime.
Genocide is the appropriate and precise
term. Crimes against humanity are also
appropriate for the same reason.
LINDLEY: Is there evidence of crimes
against the Rohingya that satisfy the
definition of genocide under the law? What
specific crimes have you learned about?
PAULOSE: There are numerous
accounts of rape against women. Rape
is a widespread tool used against
women in Myanmar. There are many
conflicts in which rape is used as a
weapon of war, as a crime against
humanity, and as genocide.
I do want to emphasize that rape,
no matter if it happens to one person
or 1,000, is a grotesque violation
of human dignity and a person's
security. After the Rwandan genocide,
the International Criminal Tribunal
for Rwanda, in a seminal case called
Akayesu, determined that rape can be
carried out to further genocide. Those
who commit rape do so to “to destroy a
woman from a physical, mental, or social
perspective and [to destroy] her capacity
to participate in the reproduction and
production of the community."
Children have been targeted by
the army and killed. Recently, there
was an admission that the Tatmadaw
killed people and buried them in
mass graves. Of course, they say they
killed about 10 people. I am sure
there are more mass graves; however,
Myanmar has restricted international
access to the Rakhine region. As of
June 6, the U.N. Security Council has
asked Myanmar to allow international
investigators into the country.
It should also be noted that the