Kofi Annan calls on Myanmar to allow access to troubled area

A commission chaired by former U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan has recommended that the government allow aid workers and journalists free access to an area in western Myanmar where security forces are accused of major human rights abuses against the Muslim Rohingya minority.

Annan spoke Thursday in a video shown at a news conference in Yangon, where his commission issued its interim recommendations for long-term solutions to conflict between the Muslim Rohingya and Rakhine Buddhists in Rakhine state. The commission was established last year at the behest of Myanmar's leader, Aung San Suu Kyi.

The Rohingya face discrimination in Buddhist-majority Myanmar and were the targets of inter-communal violence in 2012 that killed hundreds. The army launched counterinsurgency operations in Rohingya areas last October after the killing of nine border guards.