12/09/2019, 17.26
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Aung San Suu Kyi in the Netherlands to defend Myanmar from charges of genocide against the Rohingya

Gambia has filed a lawsuit against Myanmar at the International Court of Justice. In Myanmar, rallies have been held in favour of the government. The first court hearings will start tomorrow until Thursday.

Naypyidaw (AsiaNews/Agencies) – State Counsellor and Foreign Affairs Minister Daw Aung San Suu Kyi arrived this morning in the Netherlands with a delegation to defend Myanmar from charges of genocide against the Rohingya filed before the International Court of Justice (ICJ).

Back in Myanmar, thousands of people have joined rallies in support of the government across the country in a process of mobilisation that is expected to continue in the coming days.

However, certain groups in the country are in favour of the international legal action against the country’s leaders. Seventeen Shan organisations signed a statement this morning in support of legal action against the country's military leaders.

Gambia filed a lawsuit against Myanmar on 11 November in The Hague on behalf of the Organisation for Islamic Cooperation (OIC).

The first public hearings before the main judicial organ of the United Nations (UN) will start tomorrow and last until Thursday in the presence of representatives of the plaintiff and the accused.

This month’s hearings will not consider whether Myanmar is guilty of genocide, but focus on The Gambia’s request that provisional measures be taken against the country to prevent further acts of genocide.

Myanmar’s team is scheduled to appear at hearings on 11 and 12 December. It is unclear whether Daw Aung San Suu Kyi will personally lead the legal defence, as often speculated.

Legal experts note the ICJ normally takes years to reach a decision in a case, but any provisional measures could be announced in weeks.

Though the court has no way of enforcing them, its rulings can affect countries’ international reputations and set legal precedents.

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