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Aung San Suu Kyi cancels trip to United Nations amid growing Rohingya crisis

Aung San Suu Kyi cancels trip to United Nations amid growing Rohingya crisis

Myanmar's national leader Aung San Suu Kyi, facing outrage over ethnic violence that has forced about 370,000 Rohingya Muslims to flee to Bangladesh, will not attend the upcoming UN General Assembly session in NY, a party spokesman said on Wednesday. Many attended Tahajjud prayers at the Masjid in Punjagutta, where they prayed for the safety of Rohingyas in Myanmar.

The 72nd UN General Assembly opened in NY on Tuesday and events are expected to last for weeks to come, including a speech by US President Donald Trump.

It is not possible to strip a Nobel Peace Prize laureate of his or her award once bestowed.

Last October, following attacks on border posts in Rakhine's Maungdaw district, Myanmar security forces launched a five-month crackdown in which, according to Rohingya groups, around 400 people were killed.

United Nations human rights chief Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein on Monday described the operation as a "textbook example of ethnic cleansing".

United Nations agencies estimate more than a quarter-million refugees have arrived on the border of Bangladesh in the last two weeks, joining at least 100,000 who were already there after fleeing earlier riots or persecution in Buddhist-majority Burma.

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On Monday night, she lambasted Myanmar for "atrocities" that she said had reached a level beyond description.

Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei on Tuesday said that violence in Myanmar against the Rohingya Muslims marks the "death of Nobel Peace Prize", a media report said.

The Myanmar government say the death toll now stands at 421, including 378 "terrorists" and 28 civilians.

He urged Muslim countries to take practical steps to stop the violence and said they should "increase political, economic and commercial pressures on the government of Myanmar".

Skoog called for an immediate end to the violence and protections for civilians who had been victims of the fighting.

In an earlier statement, the US State Department stopped short of condemning the Myanmar government or Suu Kyi for the crisis, saying instead it was "concerned".


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