U.S. Urges Myanmar to ‘Stop the Violence’ in Rohingya Crackdown

The U.S. has called on officials in Myanmar to “stop the violence” after more than 300,000 Rohingya Muslims fled the country, amid a brutal crackdown the United Nations has described as ethnic cleansing. In a statement Monday, the White House said the recent surge of violence shows security forces “are not protecting civilians.” “We call on Burmese security authorities to respect the rule of law, stop the violence, and end the displacement of civilians from all communities,” press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said. The statement came hours after the U.N.’s top human-rights official said Myanmar’s “clearing operations” against the minority Rohingya community in Rakhine state represent “a textbook example of ethnic cleansing.” The government of the predominantly Buddhist country has said its security forces are fighting terrorists following an attack last month, though Rohingya refugees fleeing to Bangladesh say they have been brutalized and their homes burned to the ground.