Task force funded by Britain to investigate military abuses in Myanmar | Myanmar News

The bill, Myanmar Witness, comes as Western countries seek to increase pressure on the country’s military leaders on allegations of human rights abuses.

A new task force was launched on Monday to investigate evidence of human rights violations in Myanmar five months after the army fired the elected leader. Aung San Suu Kyi and put the South Asian country in turmoil.

The project funded by the British government, Myanmar Witness, said it would share the information with the United Nations Independent Investigation Mechanism for Myanmar, which is testing suspected crimes in Myanmar.

The initiative comes as Western countries seek to increase pressure on Myanmar’s military leaders over allegations of human rights abuses, with the UN saying more than 880 people have been killed by security forces since coup d’état – a figure that the military says is exaggerated.

“The Myanmar Witness will independently collect, preserve, treat, investigate, verify and review incidents of possible interference with human rights,” the group said.

Protesters wear military uniform while participating in a flash mob demonstration against the coup in Yangon on July 1. [AFP]

He said he would encourage submissions by civilians and also independently check incidents on social media – where Myanmar citizens have posted photos and videos that appear to show murders, assaults and other abuses.

The Myanmar witness said he had already discovered and verified evidence of Myanmar army reprisals, bombing of civilian areas and religious buildings, and indications of intent to harm, if not kill, protesters.

Western countries and rights groups have condemned what marked atrocities by security forces in Myanmar.

Military authorities have said they use force only when necessary to counter threats to national security.

According to the United Nations, violence since the coup has driven more than 230,000 people out of their homes.

The Association for the Assistance of Political Prisoners, which followed the post-coup crackdown, says at least 888 people have been killed by security forces since February with nearly 5,200 in detention.

The army disputed the figures, but did not give its estimates.

He said his takeover was necessary because of an alleged fraud in last November’s elections, won by Aung San Suu Kyi’s National League for Democracy party in a landslide. Their demands were rejected by the electoral commission.

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