Rohingya women organize while Myanmar faces genocide charges at the ICJ
We, Rohingya women, support The Gambia in their case against Myanmar at the International Court of Justice (ICJ) and call on other governments to support this case. We call on State Counselor Aung San Suu Kyi to work to put an end to the genocide of the Rohingya and protect the 600,000 Rohingya left in Myanmar. Finally, we are grateful for the solidarity shown by the other ethnic minority communities of Myanmar and demand equality for all peoples, regardless of gender, religion, or ethnicity.
In early December, Rohingya women from many different countries came together in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. We came from all walks of life but were united by one common cause: to seek justice and rights for Rohingya people.
At our meeting, we watched as The Gambia initiated their case at the ICJ. The scenes coming out of The Hague made us feel stronger and even more united. We watched as Aung San Suu Kyi listened to The Gambia’s legal team describe, in detail, how our people experienced genocide. The Gambia’s legal team made powerful arguments for “provisional measures” to halt Myanmar’s genocide against our people. However, we know that this fight for justice will be long and is far from being won. We, therefore, thank the Organization of Islamic Cooperation and its 57 members states as well as the governments of Canada and The Netherlands for their support on this case and call on other governments to support The Gambia at the ICJ.
We also watched as many ethnic minorities from Myanmar gathered at The Hague in support of our people. This show of solidarity was heartening and further strengthened our resolve to not only seek justice for Rohingya but for all persecuted minority groups of Myanmar. In Kuala Lumpur, we met with women from other ethnic minority communities in Myanmar, who bravely shared their experiences of persecution with us and how they do their work despite many limitations and potential reprisals.
Women in Myanmar are paying the highest price for human rights violations. We have experienced systematic and genocidal sexual and gender-based violence at the hands of the Myanmar military. Having also suffered at the hands of the military, Aung San Suu Kyi should seek to understand our suffering. Instead, she continues to deny it. Nonetheless, as State Counselor and de facto leader of Myanmar, it is her duty to work to put an end to the genocide of the Rohingya and protect the Rohingya left in Myanmar. Many of our brothers and sisters are still at risk and we demand that they are protected.