Christians Among Ethnic Groups in Myanmar Face Increasing Military Persecution as They are Being Stripped of Homes and Jobs

In a new report, human rights watchdog Amnesty International indicted Myanmar’s government of war crimes and called upon the international community to respond.

Amnesty claims military forces “have killed and injured civilians in indiscriminate attacks since January 2019… [and] carried out extrajudicial executions, arbitrary arrests, torture and other ill-treatment” in Myanmar’s Rakhine state. The army was reportedly acting upon government orders to destroy the Arakan Army (AA), an ethnic Rakhine armed group.

As noted here, Christians were among the affected ethnic populations surveyed by Amnesty during its investigation:

Amnesty International conducted 81 interviews, including 54 interviews on the ground in Rakhine State in late March 2019 and 27 remote interviews with people living in conflict-affected areas. They included ethnic Rakhine, Mro, Rohingya and Khami villagers, belonging to the Buddhist, Christian and Muslim faiths.

According to David Curry, president and CEO of Open Doors USA, conflict between the military and armed ethnic groups is an ongoing “status quo” in Myanmar. He explains, “For the last few years, the Myanmar government has been lashing out at minority groups or groups that challenge its power.”

Entire communities find themselves caught in the fray. In some cases, believers become the target.

What does persecution look like in Myanmar?

Over the past four years, Myanmar rose from 25th to 18th on Open Doors’ World Watch List — a ranking of the top 50 nations where serving Christ is most difficult. Gospel workers describe the hardships Christians face in a dossier obtained here:

The intense and even increasing fighting in predominantly Christian areas like Kachin and northern Shan State should not be overlooked… Christians are being killed, detained and forced to flee to live with tens of thousands others in refugee camps in dire circumstances. As access to these regions is very limited, their situation goes widely unnoticed….

Believers mostly face persecution from the military, the dossier adds.

Click here to read more.

SOURCE: Mission Network News, Katey Hearth