PHR has been shining a spotlight on human rights violations in Myanmar for more than 15 years. Our most recent work followed a violent August 2017 crackdown by the Myanmar military on minority Rohingya people living in northern Rakhine state, which killed thousands and drove more than 720,000 refugees into neighboring Bangladesh.
In 2020, PHR published Sexual Violence, Trauma, and Neglect, which features interviews with health workers who have treated Rohingya survivors in Bangladesh and who corroborate allegations of sexual violence by Myanmar military.
PHR teams travelled to Bangladesh’s Cox’s Bazar to forensically evaluate survivors’ wounds and to listen to firsthand witness accounts of what happened. Our work, which used medical forensic analysis to corroborate survivors’ stories, is detailed in our reports, “Please Tell the World What They Have Done to Us” and “Widespread and Systematic,” as well as 2019’s “Shot While Fleeing,” which highlights long-term disabilities resulting from the attacks.
This was not the first time that PHR documented atrocities committed against the Rohingya. In 2010, we released an emergency report, “Stateless and Starving; Persecuted Rohingya Flee Burma and Starve in Bangladesh,” detailing the forced internment of Rohingya refugees by the Bangladesh government. The report demonstrated that, among children seeking refuge in Bangladesh, 18 percent suffered from acute malnutrition.
In 2014 and 2015, we revealed how unlawful land confiscations in the Thilawa Special Economic Zone and in Shan state triggered by the government’s economic development projects were having a devastating impact on communities.