Published: 2017-12-14 16:41
Last Updated: 2017-12-14 16:41
Over 6,700 Rohingya Muslims, including at least 730 children under the age of five, were killed in the first month of violence that broke out in August in Myanmar’s northern Rakhine state, according to Médecins Sans Frontières.
The figures released on Thursday are "in the most conservative estimations," with at least 6,700 of those deaths have been caused by violence, including at least 730 children under the age of five, according to MSF.
Previously, the armed forces stated that around 400 people had been killed, most of them described as Muslim terrorists.
“The numbers of deaths are likely to be an underestimation, as we have not surveyed all refugee settlements in Bangladesh and because the surveys don’t account for the families who never made it out of Myanmar,” said Dr Sidney Wong, MSF’s medical director.
The majority of the people killed (69%) were shot, while others were burned and beaten to death. “We heard reports of entire families who perished after they were locked inside their homes, while they were set alight,” said Wong.
More than 640,000 Rohingya people have fled Myanmar’s Rakhine since August following a brutal crackdown by Myanmar’s military. Soldiers, police and local militias have burned hundreds of Rohingya villages to the ground, and are also accused of gang-raping women and children, as well as slaughtering civilians indiscriminately. Both the UN and the US have described the campaign as ethnic cleansing.