UN court to rule on jurisdiction in Rohingya genocide case
THE HAGUE, Netherlands (AP) — The United Nations' highest court is ruling Friday on whether to proceed with a landmark case that accuses Myanmar's rulers of genocide against the country's mainly Muslim Rohingya minority. The International Court of Justice is set to deliver its decision on Myanmar's claims that the Hague-based court does not have jurisdiction and that the case filed by the tiny African nation of Gambia in 2019 is inadmissible. IfThe International Court of Justice is set to deliver its decision on Myanmar's claims that the Hague-based court does not have jurisdiction and that the case filed by the tiny African nation of Gambia in 2019 is inadmissible.
UNITED NATIONS (AP) — The U.N. Security Council on Wednesday unanimously condemned Myanmar’s executions of four political prisoners and called for an immediate halt to all violence and “full respect for human rights and the rule of law.”
The statement approved by all 15 council members noted Myanmar had hanged the men after the Association of Southeast Asian Nations and other members of the 10-nation bloc that includes Myanmar appealed for the sentences to be reconsidered. Council members also “reiterated their full support for Myanmar’s democratic transition and their strong commitment to the sovereignty, political independence, territorial integrity and unity of Myanmar.”
Myanmar junta executes two pro-democracy rivals
Myanmar's junta has executed four prisoners including a former lawmaker from Aung San Suu Kyi's party and a prominent activist, state media said Monday, in the country's first use of capital punishment in decades. The four were executed for leading "brutal and inhumane terror acts", the Global New Light of Myanmar newspaper said. The paper said the executions were carried out "under the prison's procedure" without saying when or how the men were killed.The junta has sentenced dozens of anti-coup activists to death as part of its crackdown on dissent after seizing power last year, but Myanmar had not carried out an execution for decades.
ASEAN has been leading global efforts to bring peace to Myanmar, which has been rocked by civil unrest and and widespread fighting since the military ousted an elected government in February 2021. But it has stonewalled on ASEAN's peacemaking efforts.
This week, ASEAN denounced the executions as “highly reprehensible" and said they set back its efforts to facilitate dialogue between the military leadership and opponents.
Myanmar executes former National League for Democracy lawmaker and 3 other political opponents
The executions, detailed in the state-run Mirror Daily newspaper, were carried out despite worldwide pleas for clemency for the four political prisoners.The executions, detailed in the state-run Mirror Daily newspaper, were carried out despite worldwide pleas for clemency for the four political prisoners, including from United Nations experts and Cambodia, which holds the rotating chairmanship of the Assn. of Southeast Asian Nations.
The four men hanged over the weekend were a former National League for Democracy lawmaker, a democracy activist and two men accused of killing a woman they allegedly believed was a military informant. All were tried, convicted and sentenced by a military tribunal with no possibility of appeal. They were Myanmar's first judicial executions in nearly 50 years and came as a surprise even to family members of the men.
ASEAN's five-point plan to restore peace and stability to Myanmar includes an immediate halt to violence, a dialogue among all parties, and appointment of an ASEAN special envoy who would visit Myanmar to meet all concerned parties. Myanmar’s military-installed government initially agreed to the consensus reached in April 2021 but has made little effort to implement it, and the country has slipped into a situation that some U.N. experts have characterized as a civil war.
Blinken: Myanmar military executions ‘reprehensible’
Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Monday denounced as “reprehensible” the Myanmar military regime’s recent executions of pro-democracy activists and elected leaders. In a statement, Blinken said the U.S. condemns “in the strongest terms” the executions of Ko Jimmy, Phyo Zeya Thaw, Hla Myo Aung and Aung Thura Zaw over their “exercise of their fundamental…In a statement, Blinken said the U.S. condemns “in the strongest terms” the executions of Ko Jimmy, Phyo Zeya Thaw, Hla Myo Aung and Aung Thura Zaw over their “exercise of their fundamental freedoms.
The Security Council echoed ASEAN’s call “for concrete actions to effectively and fully implement the five-point consensus” and took note of the bloc’s view that the death sentences “presented a gross lack of will” to support the ASEAN chair’s efforts to expedite implementation.
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Earlier this week, U.N. special envoy Noeleen Heyzer said the U.N. views the executions as a “blatant violation” of a person’s “right to life, liberty and security.”
The Security Council underlined the importance of Heyzer’s role and encouraged close cooperation with the ASEAN special envoy, Cambodian Foreign Minister Prak Sokhonn. ASEAN foreign ministers begin meetings in Cambodia in a week.
Myanmar's neighbours dismayed over 'highly reprehensible' executions
Myanmar's neighbours dismayed over 'highly reprehensible' executionsThe 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), which includes Myanmar, said it was "extremely troubled and deeply saddened by the executions", as well as by their timing, just a week ahead of the bloc's next meeting.
China, which is Myanmar’s biggest trading partner and an old ally, welcomed the Security Council’s alignment of views with the ASEAN chair’s statement after the executions, which diplomats said Beijing sought.
A spokesperson for China’s U.N. Mission cited the “particular importance” of the council statement’s call for an immediate cessation of all forms of violence, including attacks on infrastructure, health and education facilities.
“We believe this sends a strong signal of the council’s rejection of all violence, unjustifiable wherever and by whoever committed,” said the spokesperson, who was not authorized to speak publicly. “And we hope these important messages from the council could be heeded by all relevant parties.”
Myanmar nationals living in Thailand hold the pictures of deposed Myanmar leader Aung San Suu Kyi as they protest outside Myanmar's embassy in Bangkok, Thailand, Tuesday, July 26, 2022. International outrage over Myanmar’s execution of four political prisoners is intensifying with grassroots protests and strong condemnation from world governments. (AP Photo/Sakchai Lalit)
Myanmar nationals living in Thailand with a picture of deposed Myanmar leader Aung San Suu Kyi, seen at center, stage a rally outside Myanmar's embassy in Bangkok, Thailand, Tuesday, July 26, 2022. International outrage over Myanmar’s execution of four political prisoners is intensifying with grassroots protests and strong condemnation from world governments. (AP Photo/Sakchai Lalit)
A Myanmar national living in Thailand holds the pictures of the executed political prisoners in Myanmar, as they protest outside Myanmar's embassy in Bangkok, Thailand, Tuesday, July 26, 2022. International outrage over Myanmar's execution of four political prisoners intensified Tuesday with grassroots protests and strong condemnation from world governments, as well as fears the hangings could derail nascent attempts to bring an end to the violence and unrest that has beset the Southeast Asian nation since the military seized power last year.(AP Photo/Sakchai Lalit)
This handout photo taken and released by Malaysia's Department of Information shows Malaysia's Foreign Minister Saifuddin Abdullah, right, and the U.N. Secretary-General's Special Envoy on Myanmar Noeleen Heyzer attend a press conference at the Parliament House in Kuala Lumpur, Tuesday, July 26, 2022. (Malaysia's Department of Information via AP)