ethnic cleansing


Definition of ethnic cleansing 

: the expulsion, imprisonment, or killing of an ethnic minority by a dominant majority in order to achieve ethnic homogeneity

Examples of ethnic cleansing in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Friday's action targets four Myanmar military and police commanders plus two military units for their alleged involvement in ethnic cleansing in Rakhine and other human rights abuses in the nation's Kachin and Shan states. Fox News, "US sanctions Myanmar forces for alleged human rights abuses," 17 Aug. 2018 The road toward ethnic cleansing in America begins and ends at the same place: The ballot box. Will Bunch,, "Can Trump's slow-motion ethnic cleansing keep whites in U.S. majority? | Will Bunch," 12 July 2018 In August 2016, Italian news agency ANSA reported him as calling for ethnic cleansing in Italy. Lauren Said-moorhouse And Gianluca Mezzofiore, CNN, "Meet the populist players about to take power in Italy," 1 June 2018 The tribal Germanic idea of Heimat, or homeland, for instance, represented a bulwark against the ills of modernity before the Nazis notoriously used it as a pretext for ethnic cleansing. Atossa Araxia Abrahamian, New York Times, "Can Islamic and European Civilizations Coexist?," 28 Mar. 2018 Representative Barney Fyffe called George Bush's response to Katrina ethnic cleansing by inaction. Fox News, "Rudy Giuliani reacts to Paul Manafort's plea deal," 14 Sep. 2018 Not one has resulted in any meaningful soul-searching by the military for actions that the United States has deemed ethnic cleansing. Hannah Beech, New York Times, "Myanmar and U.N. Agree to Aim for Repatriation of Rohingya," 31 May 2018 In November, the United States declared that violence against the Rohingya in Myanmar’s Rakhine state constituted ethnic cleansing, and the US later imposed sanctions., "US report: Ethnic cleansing of Rohingya persists in Myanmar," 30 May 2018 Trump’s actions are an ethnic cleansing campaign in attempts to make America less diverse and keep whites in the majority in the U.S., says columnist Will Bunch. Oona Goodin-smith,, "Families of Cosmo DiNardo murder victims speak out, Pa. to pay $2M to fight teacher shortage | Morning Newsletter," 13 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'ethnic cleansing.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of ethnic cleansing

1991, in the meaning defined above

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Last Updated

2 Jan 2019

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The first known use of ethnic cleansing was in 1991

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ethnic cleansing


English Language Learners Definition of ethnic cleansing

: the practice of removing or killing people who belong to an ethnic group that is different from the ruling group in a country or region

More from Merriam-Webster on ethnic cleansing Encyclopedia article about ethnic cleansing

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