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Case 13 “On Civilian Harm”: Ethnic cleansing

In August and September 2017, Myanmar’s national army conducted so-called clearance operation in Rakhine State. The military campaign disproportionately and indiscriminately targeted Rohingya civilians, a Muslim minority group in Myanmar that has long suffered (institutionalised) discrimination. The majority of Rohingya who survived, fled to Bangladesh. The chapter "Ethnic cleansing: The Rohingya’s expulsion from Rakhine State (Myanmar, 2017)" demonstrates that their suffering has not ended there: Many Rohingya continue to suffer from psychological trauma, children have limited or no access to education, young people are at risk of human trafficking, and armed groups are causing insecurity in the camps. At the same time, the large numbers of refugees put pressure on the security, societal and political situation in Bangladesh.

In ‘On Civilian Harm,’ we explore the ways in which civilians are negatively affected by violent conflict, offer tools and language to discuss the phenomenon, make practical recommendations for civilian harm mitigation and raise questions for further debate. The book contains in-depth analysises of 13 particular events in which harm to civilians occurred as a consequence of use of armed violence. Taken together, they contribute to an increased understanding of the variety and complexity of civilian harm at a conceptual level, bringing out common traits and patterns on civilian harm in violent conflict.

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Date of publication:

Jun 10, 2021


Saba Azeem & Erin Bijl (PAX)


PAX Protection of Civilians

More about the book 'On Civilian Harm'
Case 13 “On Civilian Harm”: Ethnic cleansing

Jun 10, 2021, Saba Azeem & Erin Bijl (PAX)

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