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>> The key test of any democracy
how it treats its most vulnerable and marginalized populations.>> He may have called for a credible probe into human rights abuses, but despite condemning widespread atrocities Myanmar, US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson says it wouldn't be wise to slap sanctions on the whole country.
Rights groups are calling for more pressure from Washington over what the UN has referred to as ethnic cleansing. Bureau Chief Antoni Slodkowski says the US may be treading a fine line, with one eye on Asia's most powerful nation.>> I think the US wouldn't want to push Myanmar into China's arms.
China's influence on Myanmar is undeniable, but the US doesn't want to kind of go incredibly harsh on them and kind of lose any contact, any leverage, any ability to influence the events here. I think that's probably why Tillerson has held off on using terms such as ethnic cleansing to retain a lot of that leverage for later, in case the US decides to come down harder on Myanmar.
>> But that doesn't mean Tillerson came out of Wednesday's briefing looking bad especially as he was standing next to Aung San Suu Kyi the whole time. Once seen as a compassionate champion of democracy, the Myanmar leader has been cast in a far more negative light since the Rohingya crisis began.
>> Tillerson came across as human, as empathetic, as understanding and that put him in contrast with Suu Kyi, who always comes across in her public statements on this issue as fairly distant, cold, and out of touch with reality. There was quite an interesting contrast obviously in the broader context of the Trump administration being accused of not really caring about humanitarian issues or human rights.
>> More than 600,000 Rohingya have fled Myanmar since August. A human rights report released on Thursday accuses the military of mass rape as a tactic against Rohingya women and girls and calls on the UN Security Council to sanction any military leaders found responsible for abuses.