Monitoring Desk: In 2017, after post alleged attack on Myanmar border post by so-called Rohingya Militants, a clearance operation was conducted by the Myanmar military which attempted genocide resulting in the death of twenty-five thousand Rohingya and sending over a Million refugees to Bangladesh.
Burmese military burnt down and destroyed hundreds of Rohingya villages, killed thousands of Rohingya civilians, raped and sexually abused Rohingya women, and committed other crimes against humanity. This was the worst genocide, which was carried out by the Myanmar military.
Myanmar military has a history of Human Rights violations. Military Junta has killed more than 2000 civilians since the 1 February 2021 coup. Despite repeated calls for democracy and calm, the military Junta has suppressed free voices with an iron hand. It has continued to kill hundreds of innocent people and detained political leadership. Under such circumstances when the world has stepped aside and is looking towards United Nations for an early peaceful resolution; India is supporting Myanmar with weapons and equipment’s which the Myanmar military is using against the civilian population.
The impact of arms transfers on human rights is explicit and is linked and addressed by the UN Arms Trade Treaty (ATT), which entered into force in December 2014 but India has not signed the Treaty yet due to its malevolent policies. States that are party to ATT are now legally obligated to deny arms transfer that could enable all forms of human rights abuses.
Further, Myanmar Navy is on a modernization drive and extensively cooperating with Bharat Electronic Limited for up-gradation of its equipment. Indian motive behind this cooperation is to further destabilize Myanmar and exploit economically by strengthening the navy in the seaport areas i.e Sittwe, Thilawa, and Yangon; so that all illegal business ventures can be steered through the Navy. This would intensify the ongoing rift between the military and civilians in Myanmar.
According to credible sources, the Indian Naval Attaché in Myanmar is in regular contact with senior Junta leadership. Although, the basic aim for collaborating with the military is to increase Indian military footprints in Myanmar. Most importantly, India is installing a coastal radar system in Myanmar; till date, civil work has started at four sites as chaungta, Gwa, Kwin, and Bauk. Myanmar Naval Chief has visited India last October and requested for equipment with the latest technology and equipment. While the Indian foreign secretary’s visit to Myanmar early this year did had covert agendas.
India has been pursuing defence relations with Myanmar despite coup (1 Feb 21) and sanctions. Credible sources has revealed that current defense cooperation between India and the military junta includes equipment and training. Important purchases from India are radars, Bow mounted sonars and F 23 Class ship, IFF System and Combat Management System. Unfortunately, these defence sales by India is facilitating Human rights abuses in Myanmar. These arms will embolden the military authority of junta its ability to intimidate or abuse.
It is a matter of concern that India is enhancing Myanmar’s military capability despite Sanctions and restrictions by US, Canada, UK, the European Union and other countries on supplying arms or related material and trade with military organizations in Myanmar. UN has issued a rare call to halt all forms of arms sales to Myanmar in response to a violent military coup. It is now up to the international community and UN bodies to take the lead to stop military junta and check its collaborators as India that is helping such brutal regimes. UNHRC should address this audacious step by India which is a violation to all laws and help humanity to survive.