06/07/2022 Myanmar (International Christian Concern) – ICC has previously reported on the human rights abuses and violence perpetrated since 2017 by the Burmese military on the minority Rohingya Muslim community. Despite international condemnation, violence and discrimination against the Rohingya in Myanmar have continued, resulting in a mass exodus of Rohingyas into neighboring Bangladesh, creating a refugee crisis there.
Recently, it was uncovered that Myanmar’s military regime shut down a well-known publishing house in the city of Yangon for importing and distributing a book on the 2017 Rohingya genocide.
The military accused Lwin Oo Sarpay Publishing House of violating the country’s 1962 publishing law by distributing and selling the book “Myanmar’s Rohingya Genocide: Identity, History and Hate Speech” by Ronan Lee, an Irish-Australian researcher. On May 28, the company’s book distribution center was forcibly closed.
A resident of Yangon, the city where Lwin Oo Sarpay formerly operated, commented on the closure. “Lwin Oo Sarpay has been distributing books on politics and history by local and foreign authors,” said the resident, who did not want to be named for safety reasons. “Now that it is closed down and its [operating] license has been withdrawn, people will not learn what they should know.”
Since the February 2021 coup that deposed Myanmar’s democratically elected civilian government, the ruling military junta has routinely shut down media outlets critical of the regime. Lwin Oo Sarpay Publishing House is not the only publishing house that has been closed. In recent weeks, the junta has shuttered two other publishers as well.
There is extensive evidence that the Burmese military committed arbitrary killings, torture, and mass rape against the Rohingya living in Rakhine state in 2017. More than 740,000 people were driven to neighboring Bangladesh because of the violence, where they were packed into refugee camps.
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