Maung (or Mr) ZARNI is a research fellow at the (Genocide) Documentation Center - Cambodia, co-founder of FORSEA.co, a progressive activist and intellectual platform for Southeast Asian activists, and Burmese coordinator of the Free Rohingya Coalition. He has 30-years of engagement in activism, scholarship, politics and media. As co-founder of the Free Burma Coalition in 1995, Zarni was widely recognized as a pioneering activist in the use of the then emerging Internet for human rights activism. An adviser to the Genocide Watch, Zarni served as a member of the Panel of Judges in the Permanent Peoples Tribunal on Sri Lanka ('s) genocidal crimes against Eelam Tamil (2013) and was the initiator of the Permanent Peoples Tribunal on Myanmar (2017).
Zarni blew the whistle on Myanmar’s genocide with a 3-year study (co-authored with Natalie Brinham) entitled The Slow-Burning Genocide of Myanmar’s Rohingya (The Washington International Law Journal or WILJ) in 2014 and, again with the same co-author, a historical study entitled Reworking The Colonial-Era Indian Peril: Myanmar's State-directed Persecution of Rohingyas and Other Muslims (Brown Journal of World Affairs, 2017). His most recent monographs are The Enemy of the State speaks: Irreverent Essays and Interviews (2019) and Essays on Myanmar's Genocide of Rohingyas (2018). Initially educated at Mandalay University, Burma, Zarni earned his MA in Education from the University of California at Davis (1991) and a PhD from the University of Wisconsin at Madison with the thesis (1998) on the politics of knowledge and control in Burma under the military rule under the joint supervision of leading American sociologist of education Michael W. Apple and the late Wisconsin historian and former US Military Interrogator of SS officers Robert L. Koehl, a pioneering scholar on Himmler & SS. With Uzbek-British filmmaker and war-correspondent Shahida Tulaganov, Zarni co-produced the 50-minutes educational film Auschwitz: Lessons Never Learned (2020) and served as a leading expert in EXILED: A film by Shahida Tulaganov (2017), a historical documentary about the Rohingya genocide.
For his "impactful" scholarship and activism, Zarni was recognized with the Cultivation of Harmony Award by the Parliament of the World’s Religions in 2015 and shortlisted for Sweden’s Right Livelihood Award in 2018.
He blogs at Zarni's Blog.