A spokesperson from Myanmar's presidential office rejected a UN fact-finding report issued on Monday, which found evidence for the military’s involvement in genocide and crimes against humanity targeting the country's Rohingya Muslim minority population, more than 700,000 of whom have fled to Bangladesh. The commission also established the military’s culpability for war crimes against minorities in conflicts in northern Kachin and Shan states.
The big picture: The country’s numerous ongoing conflicts have allowed the military to retain the upper hand over the civilian government of Aung San Suu Kyi, whom the international community has isolated for her failure to end the violence. Myanmar now faces a stark choice between diverging paths: Protracted conflicts, some unresolved since independence in 1948, could spell a war-torn nation resembling Syria or Afghanistan, where civil wars have undermined civilian governance and empowered hardliners. Alternatively, Myanmar could follow in the footsteps of Indonesia, where the military gradually, albeit partially, withdrew from politics, allowing the civilian government to resolve disputes with regional separatists.