The Irish capital Dublin has rescinded an honorary title from Myanmar’s de facto leader Aung San Suu Kyi, amid international outcry over her muted response to the ethnic cleansing of Muslim Rohingyas in her country’s West.
Dublin City Councilors voted overwhelmingly on Wednesday to strip Aung San Suu Kyi of her Freedom of Dublin City award, Irish broadcaster RTÉ reports.
In revoking the honor, which was conferred in 1999, the councilors cited the former democracy advocate’s failure to condemn military-perpetrated atrocities against the Rohingya, a Muslim-minority population that has long faced discrimination in Myanmar.
Suu Kyi, whose official title is State Counselor, wields no influence over the autonomous army and has refused to acknowledge its actions in Rakhine state, even as the U.N. documented allegations of rape, murder and arson committed by soldiers.
The army-led crackdown has prompted an exodus of more than 646,000 Rohingya since August, and the U.N. human rights chief has warned that the “shockingly brutal” campaign may include “elements of genocide.”
Amid the abuses, international criticism has come to replace the acclaim and numerous prizes that were once showered on Suu Kyi, who spent 15 years under house arrest staging a non-violent protest against her nation’s junta. Several of the Nobel laureate’s other accolades have recently been revoked or are in discussion of being revoked, including similar Freedom of City awards in Oxford, London and Sheffield.
Last month, musician Bob Geldof returned his own Freedom of Dublin City title to protest the award’s association with Suu Kyi.