CANADA’S parliament on Thursday unanimously voted to revoke the honorary citizenship of Burma’s (Myanmar) state counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi, following an earlier resolution to label the Rohingya crisis in the Southeast Asian country a “genocide.”
The motion was passed in response to the leader’s apparent failure to stop the persecution of the minority Muslim group in her country, according to the BBC.
The move by MPs in the House of Commons came a day after Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said he was open to looking at stripping Suu Kyi of the honour but said doing so would not end the crisis in Burma, where more than 700,000 Rohingya have fled a government crackdown.
According to Reuters, the motion on removing the honorary citizenship was proposed by Gabriel Ste Marie, a member of the opposition Bloc Quebecois party, who told reporters after the vote: “I think it’s a great symbol”.
The House of Commons last week unanimously voted to call the killings of Rohingya a genocide, a move that Canadian Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland said at the time was significant.
“Our government supported this motion in response to her (Suu Kyi’s) continued failure to speak out against the genocide of the Rohingya, a crime being committed by the military with which she shares power,” Freeland spokesman Adam Austen was quoted as saying.
Legislator Andrew Leslie, who serves as Freeland’s parliamentary secretary, told reporters “that the machinery of government will chew over the details of what specifically is required to implement” the motion to revoke the honorary citizenship.
The motion to strip the citizenship also came after last Thursday’s vote to declare Burma’s military actions against the minority Rohingya an act of “genocide” in which the lower house endorsed the findings of a UN fact-finding mission on Burma that uncovered “crimes against humanity.”
Lawmakers in the House of Commons said the actions that unfolded in the Southeast Asian country “constitute genocide” and also called for the matter to be raised at the International Criminal Court.
They also urged the international community to investigate and prosecute Burma’s generals for “the crime of genocide.”