YANGON: Human rights abuses are still occurring in Myanmar despite reforms by the quasi-civilian government, a U.N. rights envoy said today, singling out arbitrary arrest and torture of alleged ethnic Kachin rebels.
Tomas Ojea Quintana, U.N. special rapporteur on the human rights situation in Myanmar, was speaking at the end of a five-day mission to the country, where President Thein Sein has pushed through reforms since the end of military rule in 2011.
Quintana told reporters that while this process of reform is continuing in the right direction, there are significant human rights shortcomings that remain unaddressed, calling for urgent action before the problems became entrenched.
The quasi-civilian government has agreed ceasefires with most of the ethnic rebel groups fighting for autonomy.
But fighting flared up in Kachin State in June 2011 and the conflict escalated late last year when the military used air strikes to thwart what it said was rebel aggression.