A petition to withdraw the Nobel prize from Suu Kyi collects hundreds of thousands of signatures
Hundreds of thousands of people around the world are calling for the withdrawal of Nobel Prize awarded to Aung San Suu Kyi, strongly criticized for his handling of the crisis of the Rohingyas. This withdrawal is however excluded by the Norwegian Nobel Committee. Thursday morning, the online petition “Take back the Nobel peace of Aung San Suu Kyi” had collected more than 364,000 signatures. “So far, Aung San Suu Kyi, who leads in fact Burma, as it did nothing to stop this crime against humanity in his country”, believes his Indonesian initiator.
According to the UN, some 164,000 people, most of the Rohingyas, have fled the violence in less than two weeks to seek refuge in neighbouring Bangladesh. Widely criticized abroad for its silence on the fate of the Muslim minority of the Rohingyas, Aung San Suu Kyi, leading to de facto the Burmese Government, denounced Wednesday a ‘iceberg of misinformation’ giving, according to her, a misleading view of the crisis.
In Oslo, the Norwegian Nobel Committee pointed out that it was statutorily impossible to remove a price. “The testament of Alfred Nobel, or the statutes of the Nobel Foundation opened the possibility that a Nobel – be it in physics, chemistry, medicine, literature or peace – be removed. The question does therefore not formally”, the Secretary of the Committee, Olav Njolstad told AFP. “Only the efforts of a winner until the prize are assessed by the Nobel Committee”, not its later action, he added. Aung San Suu Kyi was given the Nobel Prize in 1991, while she was under house arrest in his country, and could not go to Oslo for his speech of acceptance that 21 years later.
Stateless in their country
For decades, the Muslim Rohingya minority, which has about a million people in Burma, is victim of discrimination in Burma. Considered foreigners in Burma, Buddhist country to over 90%, the Rohingya are stateless, although some live in this country for generations. Some analysts believe that the Nobel Peace Prize is powerless in the face of the rise of extremist Buddhists and facing an army which remains very strong including politically in a country which was for nearly 50 years a military dictatorship.