Fighting for justice

Human rights lawyer to represent the Maldivian government and Gambia that have united to seek justice for Myanmar’s 2017 persecution of Rohingya Muslims. The two states appointed Amal Clooney to represent their case at the United Nation’s highest court.

Back in 2017, Myanmar’s military crackdown led to mass displacement of refugees, as more than 700,000 Rohingya Muslims fled to neighbouring Bangladesh in an attempt to survive the ongoing genocide. It is no surprise that the Maldivian and Gambian governments turned to Amal for this case, as she is considered one of the world’s most accomplished human rights lawyer.

In January of this year, the International Court of Justice (ICJ) came to a unanimous decision, imposing emergency “provisional measures” on Myanmar, instructing it to prevent genocidal violence against its Rohingya minority and preserve any evidence of past crimes.

“I am delighted to have been asked to represent the Maldives before the International Court of Justice. Accountability for genocide in Myanmar is long overdue and I look forward to working on this important effort to seek judicial remedies for Rohingya survivors,” said the British-Lebanese lawyer.

The human rights lawyer worked with the Maldivian government before, as she successfully represented their former president Mohamed Nasheed and secured a UN decision that his 2015 jailing for 13 years was illegal.

Moreover, she also represented Reuters journalists Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo, who spent more than 500 days in prison in Myanmar. The reporters were working on an investigative piece, looking into the killing of 10 Rohingya Muslim men in Rakhine state. They were convicted of breaking the colonial-era Official Secrets Act, but with the help of Amal, they were freed in May, 2019.

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