ICJ orders Myanmar to take steps to protect the Rohingya Muslim minority

The International Court of Justice (ICJ) has ordered measures to prevent the genocide of long-suffering Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar.

Iran PressEurope: The decision comes despite de facto Myanmar leader Aung San Suu Kyi defending her country in person last month at the top UN court, and denying any suggestion of genocide in Myanmar.

Thousands of Rohingya Muslims died and more than 700,000 fled to neighbouring Bangladesh during an army crackdown in 2017. UN investigators have warned that genocidal actions could recur.

The ICJ case, lodged by the African Muslim-majority nation of Gambia, called for emergency measures to be taken against the Myanmar military until a fuller investigation on the 2017 events is carried out.

The panel of 17 judges at the ICJ on Thursday 23 January voted unanimously to order Myanmar to take 'all measures within its power' to prevent genocide, which they said the Rohingya Muslims remained at serious risk of.

These include the prevention of killing, and 'causing serious bodily or mental harm' to members of the group, as well as preserving evidence of possible genocide that has already occurred.

Presiding judge Abdulqawi Ahmed Yusuf said Myanmar should report back within four months on how it was implementing the ICJ ruling.

The measures are binding and not subject to appeal, but the court has no means of enforcing them.


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