THE HAGUE : Suu Kyi told to 'stop genocide' in UN court showdown.

Nobel Peace Laureate Aung San Suu Kyi faced calls for Myanmar to ''stop the genocide'' of  Rohingya Muslims as she personally led country's defence at the UN's top court on Tuesday.

Myanmar's civilian leader sat through graphic accounts of mass murder and rape as the west African of The Gambia set out its case at the International Court of Justice in The Hague.

Thousands of people back home in Yangon rallied in support of 74-year-old Suu Kyi, whose silence about the plight of the Rohingya has tarnished her international reputation as a rights icon.

Around 740,000 Rohingya fled to neighboring Bangladesh after a bloody crackdown by the Military military in 2017 that UN investigators have already described as genocide.

''Tell Myanmar to stop these senseless killings to stop these acts of barbarity that continue to shock our collective conscience, to stop this genocide of its own people,'' Gambian Justice Minister Abubacarr Tambadou told the judges.

Muslim-majority Gambia accuses Myanmar of breaching the 1948 genocide convention and has asked the court, et up in 1946 to rule on disputes between UN member states, to take emergency measures to stop further violence.

''Another genocide is unfolding right before our eyes yet we do nothing to stop it,'' added Tambadou, a former prosecutor at the tribunal into Rwanda's 1994 genocide.

''Everyday of inaction means more people are being killed, more women are being raped and more children are being burned alive. For what crime? Only that they were born different.''

Suu Kyi, who 28 years ago today was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize, is set to speak in Myanmar's defence. She is expected to argue that Myanmar was conducting legitimate operations against Rohingya militants and that ICJ has no jurisdiction in this case.

Her decision to personally lead the southeast Asian nation's case at the court has proved popular at home, where the Rohingya are widely regarded as illegal immigrants despite having lived in Myanmar for decades.

The Gambia's lawyers however said the appearance of huge billboards across Myanmar in recent weeks featuring pictures of Suu Kyi with three smiling generals showed she was ''in it together''  with the army that once held her captive. [AFP]


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