LONDON - Facebook’s parent company Meta should pay reparations to Rohingya communities who were driven out of western Myanmar in 2017, given the role that it played in enabling the campaign of ethnic cleansing, the human rights group Amnesty International said in a report published yesterday.

In the report, Amnesty claims that Facebook’s “dangerous algorithms and reckless pursuit of profit… substantially contributed to the atrocities perpetrated by the Myanmar military against the Rohingya people in 2017.”

In August of that year, the Myanmar military launched a “clearance operation” against the Rohingya communities of northern Rakhine State in the country’s west, which drove more than 700,000 Rohingya civilians across the border into Bangladesh.

During the assaults, hundreds of villages were burned to the ground, civilians were shot, and hundreds, possibly thousands, of women and girls were raped. Facebook’s role in enabling this ethnic cleansing – and possible genocide – of the Rohingya has long been recognized.

In March 2018, the U.N. Independent International Fact-Finding Mission on Myanmar reported that that social media platforms, particularly Facebook, had played a “determining role” in the violence against the Rohingya, and had “substantively contributed to the level of acrimony and dissension and conflict” in the country ahead of their expulsion.

Later that year, the New York Times conducted its own investigation into Facebook’s role in facilitating the violence, which concluded that Myanmar military personnel had “turned the social network into a tool for ethnic cleansing.”