Tatmadaw probe found soldiers responsible in Inn Din village killings

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Amnesty previously accused the Burmese military of committing "crimes against humanity" after the human rights group documented its targeted campaign of violence, including the mass murder of civilians and the widespread rape of Rohingya women and girls.

Ten Rohingya in the group were captured and executed, according to an internal investigation that was launched after a mass grave was located last month.

The statement, published Wednesday on the Facebook page of Myanmar's Commander-in-Chief Senior General Min Aung Hlaing, explained that security forces had been conducting a "clearance operation" when "200 Bengali terrorists attacked using sticks and swords".

Six soldiers were taken to a military hospital, border guard police official Sann Oo said by phone Saturday.

The captives should have been handed over to police, the army statement said, but with militants mounting continuous attacks and destroying two military vehicles, "there were no conditions to transfer the 10 Bengali terrorists to the police station and so it was made a decision to kill them".

More than 600,000 Rohingya, who are not recognised by the Myanmar government as one of the country's many ethnic groups, have fled to Bangladesh since August a year ago, when violence between armed Rohingya and Myanmar security forces prompted a severe crackdown.

The military announced on December 18 that a mass grave containing 10 bodies had been found at the coastal village of Inn Din, about 50 km (30 miles) north of the state capital Sittwe.

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"We have chose to provide the aid in response to the agreement between Myanmar and Bangladesh to represent an global message of support so that the repatriation can be carried out promptly", said Foreign Ministry official Shinobu Yamaguchi in a statement.

The military refers to members of the Rohingya Muslim minority as "Bengalis", a term the Rohingya reject as implying they are illegal migrants from Bangladesh.

The villagers assisted in the execution, according to the statement, because they wanted revenge on the Rohingya militants who had killed their family members in the past.

Until now, however, security forces have denied any accusations of guilt.

"Villagers involved and security personnel who broke the Rules of Engagement will be taken action in accordance with the law", it added.

Myanmar's military targeting of an ethnic minority in the country n an attempt to uphold Buddhist nationalism is not unprecedented.

"This grisly admission is a sharp departure from the army's policy of blanket denial of any wrongdoing", James Gomez, Amnesty International's regional director for Southeast Asia and the Pacific, told RFA.

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