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How Aung San Suu Kyi is silent about the plight of the Rohingya



I n 2015 head of the first free and fair elections in Myanmar for decades, there was only one name on everyone's lips: Aung San Suu Kyi

The human rights activist and Nobel Peace Prize laureate – and former political prisoner, 2010 was released from house arrest after 15 years of imprisonment by the military junta – was a symbol of hope. Her belief in her country was so great that she was often referred to as "The Lady". And the lady repaid the compliment to her people at a rally a few days before the vote.

"I'm not scared at all," she told the worshiping crowds. "Because I believe in you."

But since that time of hope and faith, cemented when the lady won the elections, it could not be otherwise today. It's been a year since a genocide began ̵

1; a brutal crackdown by the military on the minority of Rohingya Muslims. The violence has driven more than 700,000 people to flee to Bangladesh.

While once compared to Nelson Mandela and seen as a symbol of peaceful resistance against oppression, Suu Kyi has repeatedly refused to speak out against the military campaign against violence against the Rohingya people. In the attack, which started in August last year, villages were razed to the ground and tens of thousands were killed and women assaulted and raped. And while the United Nations has said that the violence is "ethnic cleansing", Aung San Suu Kyi's response or lack of international personalities was condemned by Malala Yousafzai to Archbishop Desmond Tutu.

With more than 400,000 people signing a petition to revoke their Nobel Prize, the lady has fallen into disfavor to a considerable extent. The idea that they would do things differently and maintain the spirit of hope, justice and freedom, has died beside the slaughter.

But there are still many people in Myanmar who are still burning that flame for a democratic future for all and many of them are women. Here are the other "Ladies of Myanmar" – their stories are new stories of hope in the complicated next chapter of their country.


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