A US judge orders Facebook to release the contents of accounts in the Rohingya file

A US judge has ordered Facebook to publish an archive of accounts linked to the abuses by the Myanmar army (Burma) and Buddhist militias against the Rohingya, which the company had closed, according to the Wall Street Journal.

And the newspaper reported that Judge Zia Farooqi of a court in Washington criticized, in his decision, issued on Wednesday, the giant American company for social networks for refusing to submit these documents to countries that want to prosecute Burma before the international judiciIG.

Facebook refused to release this information, citing US privacy law. But the judge considered that the deleted messages, which belonged to Burmese officials, had nothing to do with protecting users’ personal conversations.

The judge wrote in his decision, according to the newspaper, that “blocking the requested content will miss the opportunity to understand how misinformation led to genocide,” adding that “covering up behind privacy rights is a matter of paradox.”

The platform has been criticized for its inaction in the face of calls for violence linked to the killing of Rohingya in Burma in 2017. The killings, which United Nations investigators have labeled “genocide”, have caused the exodus to Bangladesh of some 740,000 Rohingya, a long-persecuted Muslim minority in Burma.

It is not known how many Rohingya have been killed during the violence, but NGOs say it may be in the thousands.

Facebook responded Thursday, announcing that it was studying the judge’s decision, and noting that it had voluntarily sent documents to the Independent Investigation Mechanism on Burma established in 2018 by the United Nations Human Rights Council.

“We are studying the decision,” the company said in a statement. We remain shocked by the atrocities committed against the Rohingya in Burma and support the judiciIG for international crimes.”

In September 2018, the Hague-based International Criminal Court announced that it had opened a preliminIG investigation into the alleged deportation of Rohingyas by Burma to Bangladesh, the first phase of a mechanism that could lead to a formal investigation and possibly charges.


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