Published: Sat, March 10, 2018
Medical | By Jackie Banks

Holocaust museum strips Suu Kyi of rights award

Holocaust museum strips Suu Kyi of rights award

The museum said it hoped that she would have stood up for the Rohingya, who have faced oppression in Myanmar for so long, and done something to stop the genocide.

Aung San Suu Kyi also refused to cooperate with the United Nations and blocked journalists from reporting on the crisis, The Hill reported.

The award, named after Holocaust survivor and author Elie Wiesel, was given to Suu Kyi in 2012 shortly after she was released from a 15-year house arrest for resisting the country's military dictatorship and advocating for human rights in her country. Her party won a landslide victory in 2015 and she became state counsellor.

In recent years, the Museum has been closely monitoring the military's campaign against the Rohingya and your response to it.

As a living memorial to the Holocaust, the Museum's mission is to inspire citizens and leaders worldwide to confront hatred, prevent genocide, and promote human dignity.

The letter continues, urging her to use her position to cooperate with global efforts "to establish the truth about the atrocities committed in Rakhine State and secure accountability for perpetrators" and to lead changes to Myanmarese law that leave most Rohingya stateless. The attacks have prompted almost 700,000 to flee to neighboring Bangladesh.

Despite these credible accounts of human rights abuses, documents released under freedom of information laws show that the Australian defence department plans to spend nearly $400,000 on training members of the Myanma military in 2017-18.

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Meanwhile, a senior Bangladesh cabinet minister has accused Myanmar of obstructing efforts to repatriate roughly 750,000 Rohingya refugees, saying it was unlikely the displaced Muslims would ever return to their homeland, according to AFP.

The museum does on-the-ground research into alleged genocide around the world. "Aung San Suu Kyi's refusal to condemn or halt ethnic cleansing of Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar is shameful", McGovern said.

Human rights organizations around the world have condemned the attacks on the Rohingya people and in November, the USA government declared the situation in Myanmar an example of "ethnic cleansing". Regrettably over the last five years the situation has become progressively worse and today seems untenable for the Rohingya population.

In January, US diplomat Bill Richardson resigned from a Suu Kyi-appointed panel set up to ease tensions with the Rohingya, assailing her for an "absence of moral leadership". ". It is true that Aung San Suu Kyi lacks real power over the military, which retains a quarter of seats in parliament and runs other institutions".

The museum said Suu Kyi failed to live up to the standards it expected of the award's recipients.

Myanmar and Bangladesh signed a repatriation deal for the refugees earlier this year, but authorities in Myanmar have refused to allow any global body including the United Nations to oversee the process.

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