(This is the continuation of ICJ Affair article, which appeared in November 2021, issue 92 of MI)
During the ICJ hearing case, Su Kyi incredibly called AA (Arakan Army) out as Buddhist Armed Organisation! She has to explain to the people the translation of ARSA (Arakan Rohingha Salvation Army) organisation in Myanmar language and how she had used the term in her speech at the ICJ. If she had used the term wrongly in her speech, it is equivalent to determining a nation’s fate, through recognition or de-recognition of something.
The reason for Su Kyi going to ICJ personally (while trying appear as a hero, in posters across Yangon) was for her own interests first, then her party’s, instead of being for Myanmar’s national interests. At most UN assemblies and UN/EU high level meetings, Su Kyi’s government was always called out, being accused of committing offences against so called Rohingya people (illegal Bengladeshis living in Myanmar) and being tried to impose punitive sanctions. Yet, as the leader of the nation, who has been in power for nearly half a decade, as the sole State Councillor who stood even above the President, has no response whatsoever.
Neither did she fulfil her role as the Foreign Minister of five years in the office. During her term, she never issued any statement, disputing any wrongful accusations on Myanmar and its government by western and Islamic powers. Besides being negligent in her capacity both as the Foreign Minister and the State Councillor, she committed a worse off action by delegating such a sensitive and urgent matter of international stature, to a never-heard-of-in-the-world International Relations Ministry.
With such sloppy and irresponsible approach, OIC supported member Gambia dared to sue Myanmar at ICJ on November 13, 2019. Even then, other than issuing a dismal statement of the fact that the suit was an attack on Myanmar sovereignty, Su Kyi and her government was totally oblivious or desperately short on foresight of the upcoming ambush around the corner.
Four days later, during OIC international assembly, its Secretary General Yousef bin Ahmad Al-Othaimeen, accused Su Kyi and her NLD party of criminal misuse of OCI grants and funds, provided to her and her party in the past. OIC Secretary General threatened to sue both her and NLD led government if ICJ suit was not properly answered.
Only when the famous expose is about to be unfolded, Su Kyi panicked and the Foreign Ministry quickly made an announcement that Su Kyi would go to ICJ to defend the case. QED! Only when OIC blackmailed her through expose of her skeletons in the closet (being recipient of millions of OIC $ since 2013), she was pushed into hastening her response. Whose interest would she be looking after other than herself and her party’s!
Without a doubt, there was some sort of a promise to include Rohingya as one of the ethnic tribe of Myanmar, in return for millions of OIC funding. Initially NLD government did fight for Rohingya immediately after they came into power. Many NLD ministers and NLD CEC (Central Executive Committee) members have spoken in favour of these illegal immigrants. Yet most of the populace was against the move and the government has to step back. Later with the help of ARSA, OIC, Al-Qaeda, Taliban and IS, terrorist activities were initiated in northern Rakhine.
When Myanmar Armed Forces (Tatmataw) tried to clear these elements to bring the region back to normalcy, these illegal immigrants burnt their own houses and cried in front of cameras of pro western, pro Islamic NGOs to gain sympathy, fraudulently accusing Tatmataw of burning their houses and raping Bengali women.
Even Su Kyi portrayed Buddhist monks and nationalists as extremists. The whole NLD government and their lobbyists started an agenda to punish and jail them. UN special rapporteur Yang Hee Lee then came in and issued a report that the government and Tatmataw systematically discriminated against the Rohingyas and carried out the genocide! Then the nationalist movement exploded. Some monks ended up swearing at Yang on social media. All NLD lobbyists blamed the monks instead of understanding the reason for the outburst.
At first, international community could not get involved as all these happenings were within Myanmar borders. Su Kyi must unscrupulously turned it into an international affair. First, she hired Kofi Annan (Ex UN Sec Gen) for millions of dollars, even though most of Myanmar people were against the move. NLD lobbyists spun the move as an out-of-this-world move by their heavenly leader!
Prior to Gambia suit, Su Kyi government also enacted a law allowing Myanmar residents (of Islamic origin) to adopt up to two foreign children, despite protest across all quarters. Almost everyone knew this law objective was to increase Islamic Bengali population in Myanmar.
Nearing the election, with little or no track record of performance in the past five years to show for, Su Kyi had to turn people attention elsewhere. Else, people would just laugh off at their achievements (rather, lack of) for the past five years. Just like a magician tricking children, Su Kyi managed to get most of the population sucked into her appearance at ICJ. The fact that Su Kyi went to ICJ is an indirect acceptance of existence of Rohingya as an ethnic in Myanmar by her and her party all along. Until today, she never clarify the use of that word. She simply stated there was no genocide, there was no discrimination and kept on using the term, Muslims from Rakhine State. Even if the case for genocide did not materialise, there would be indirect acceptance of the Rohingya term, by her usage. Why did she go to Hague, when it is totally possible not to respond? Why would she not send an emissary? Why would she not go to the UN to present her case, instead of the inconspicuous ICJ? The answer is crystal clear: Rohingya word and ethnic to get acknowledgement, for her to get portrayed as a national hero, remove Tatmataw from political arena, amend the Constitution, accept all illegal Bengalis as Rohingyas and allow adoption of Bengali children. In reality, however, Su Kyi’s action amounted to nothing more than those usually taken by a self-serving, contemptible, shameless and corrupt politician!
(ICJ Affair was extracted from ‘Myanmar Democratic Transition 2016-2020’ by Soe Thane. The book can be ordered through Myanmar Insider.)