Amnesty International on November 12, 2018 stripped Myanmar’s de facto leader Aung San Suu Kyi of its highest honour, the ‘Ambassador of Conscience’ award, over her indifference to atrocities committed by the Myanmar military against and increasing intolerance of freedom of expression.
The Amnesty International, an international human rights group, named Suu Kyi as its 2009 Ambassador of Conscience Award recipient when she was still under house arrest for her opposition to Myanmar’s oppressive military. However, considering her failure to speak out and her shielding of the security forces from accountability for the violence against the Rohingya, the organisation withdrew the honour from her.
A United Nations fact-finding mission recently found that the Myanmar military was committing genocide against the Rohingyas, the minority Muslim population; and other ethnic minorities and in the middle of all this, Suu Kyi had failed in her duty to protect her own citizens.
The report condemns Suu Kyi for failing to use her power to prevent the genocide and fulfil her responsibility to protect the civilian population, thus, leading to mass murder, rape and displacement. However, Suu Kyi’s administration rejected the findings as one-sided, and said the military action was engaged in a legitimate counter-insurgency operation.