NUG Calls for Global Action to Halt Myanmar Junta’s Escalating War Crimes

Myanmar’s civilian National Unity Government (NUG) declared on Wednesday that effective international actions are urgently needed to prevent the military regime from relentlessly attacking hospitals and civilians.

The NUG said Myanmar’s military has conducted over 1,200 attacks on health facilities, killing 104 medics, injuring 136 others, and destroying a total of 308 hospitals and clinics since the military coup in 2021.

In the latest attack, patients and staff were wounded when junta aircraft bombed the Min Phoo village hospital in Minbya Township, Rakhine State at 1.45 am on Tuesday.

The ethnic Arakan Army (AA) said captured junta soldiers and their family members were among the patients being treated in the hospital at the time of the airstrike.

“The [hospital] is not a military target. It was treating civilians as well as junta soldiers who surrendered to the AA along with their family members,” said a captured junta commander in a video released by the AA on Thursday.

“The attack on the hospital also damages the dignity of our military,” added Lieutenant Colonel Nay Lin Tun, commander of Infantry Battalion 299.

The commander was captured after being wounded in a clash with AA troops in Minbya Township on Jan. 28. He had just finished his third week of recovery from surgery at the hospital in Min Phoo when the airstrike was conducted.

A public hospital in Ramree town, Rakhine State following an attack by junta warplanes on February 20. / AA

On Feb. 20, regime aircraft used powerful bombs to attack a public hospital and residential areas of Ramree town in Rakhine State, destroying the entire hospital building as well as damaging Myoma market, a school, and a convent, the NUG said.

Junta aircraft also attacked a hospital in Kawlin town, Sagaing Region on Feb. 9, destroying almost the entire building. There were no casualties as patients and hospital staff managed to evacuate before the attack, the NUG said.

The civilian government said the junta is frequently attacking hospitals and other civilian targets in violation of the Geneva Conventions, international humanitarian law and UN Security Council resolutions.

It also vowed to take severe action against those who contribute to the military regime’s onslaught against the health sector.

“The international community must not ignore the junta’s violence against health services and civilians,” the NUG said in its statement.

The junta is suffering humiliating defeats on multiple fronts across the country as the NUG’s People’s Defense Forces (PDFs) and allied ethnic armed organizations step up their offensive.

Regime forces have retaliated by intensifying attacks on civilian targets including villages, towns, schools, hospitals and religious sites across the country.

Intentional attacks on civilian areas including villages, towns and schools, as well as buildings dedicated to education, healthcare and religion, are considered war crimes under international law.

Irrawaddy News