Myanmar army head urges troops to obey law

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Myanmar Army leader My Aung Hlaing has told military personnel to obey the law with reference to the case of seven soldiers to a massacre of Muslims from Rohingya.

In a speech at a military school in the north of the country, My Aung Hlaing, soldiers told them to "comply with the military codes of conduct and international laws and conventions", according to a translation published on his official Facebook page in Thursday.

"No one is over the law. Any action will be taken if anyone breaks the law. The problems in Inn Your village … were resolved in accordance with the Geneva Convention and an action was taken against military officers and other ranks who did not comply with the law , "said My Aung Hlaing in his first direct comment on the killing.

Seven soldiers were sentenced to 10 years of hard labor in this month to attend the massacre of 10 Rohingya men in Inn Din, northwestern Rakhine, in September last year.

The massacre was being investigated by two Reuters journalists – Wa Lone, 32, and Kyaw Soe Oo, 28 – arrested in December and remained in custody accused of violating the country's official secrecy law.

The authorities said in February that the military opened an internal investigation of the killings independently and that it was not linked to the Reuters reporters, which they said were accused of obtaining independent secret government papers.

The Rohingya men were buried in a mass grave at the beginning of September after being hacked to death or shot by Buddhist civilian neighbors and soldiers. Reuters published its story about the murders in February.

The murders were part of a major army robbery on Rohingya, seized by allegations of assassination, rape, firefighting and robbery, triggered in response to Rohingya-militant attacks on security forces in late August.

Nearly 700,000 Rohingya Muslims have fled Myanmar as a result, according to UN agencies. The United Nations and the United States described it as ethnic cleansing – an accusation that Myanmar denies.

My Aung Hlaing repeated in his speech that the army's Rakhine operation was a legitimate counteroffensive against "Bengali terrorists".

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