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Amnesty International withdraws award to Aung San Suu Kyi for ‘shameful betrayal’

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[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Amnesty International has withdrawn its highest honour ‘Ambassador of Conscience’ from Myanmar’s leader Aung San Suu Kyi in light of what it said was the Nobel Peace Prize laureate’s “shameful betrayal of the values she once stood for.”

This is the latest in a string of awards the 1991 Nobel Peace Prize winner lost since Myanmar’s military drove 720,000 Rohingya out of the Buddhist majority country in what the United Nations has called an act of genocide.

Amnesty International announced Monday, Nov 12, that its secretary general, Kumi Naidoo, informed Suu Kyi that it was revoking the award it gave her in 2009 “in recognition of her peaceful and non-violent struggle for democracy and human rights” while she was still under house arrest.

Amnesty said it was withdrawing the award “with great sadness” because of Suu Kyi’s “apparent indifference to atrocities committed by the Myanmar military and increasing intolerance of freedom of expression”.

Amnesty has criticized the failure of Suu Kyi and her government to speak out about military atrocities against the Rohingya Muslim population.

Naidoo said in a letter to Ms Suu Kyi: “Our expectation was that you would continue to use your moral authority to speak out against injustice wherever you saw it, not least within Myanmar itself. Today, we are profoundly dismayed that you no longer represent a symbol of hope, courage, and the undying defence of human rights.”

He continued: “Amnesty International cannot justify your continued status as a recipient of the Ambassador of Conscience award and so with great sadness we are hereby withdrawing it from you.”

Amnesty said it informed the 73-year-old of the decision on Sunday. She has so far issued no public response.

Suu Kyi was globally hailed as a freedom fighter who stood up to her country’s feared military junta while spending 15 years under house arrest. Her plight received added attention when she was visited by Hillary Clinton when the two-time US presidential candidate was still Secretary of State in 2011.

Suu Kyi then reaffirmed her commitment to working with the United States to bring democracy to her country of around 50 million people.

Her National League for Democracy (NLD) party swept to power in a 2015 landslide that brought hope of Myanmar correcting injustices inflicted over 50 years of brutal military rule. But her tenure has been marred by a failure to speak up for Rohingya Muslims. Her government is also fighting an uphill struggle against corruption and local conflicts.

Since a fresh wave of violence began last year, the security forces are accused of having killed thousands, raping women and girls, detaining and torturing men and boys, and razing hundreds of homes to the ground in what a UN fact-finding mission has called it a textbook example of ethnic cleansing.

More than 720,000 Rohingya have fled over the border to Bangladesh, but the government there have since struck a deal with Myanmar to send them back.

Naidoo wrote: “Aung San Suu Kyi’s failure to speak out for the Rohingya is one reason why we can no longer justify her status as an Ambassador of Conscience.

“Her denial of the gravity and scale of the atrocities means there is little prospect of the situation improving for the hundreds of thousands of Rohingya living in limbo in Bangladesh or for the hundreds of thousands of Rohingya who remain in Rakhine State.

“Without acknowledgement of the horrific crimes against the community, it is hard to see how the government can take steps to protect them from future atrocities.”

Amnesty said it believes thousands of Rohingyas were killed in Myanmar’s western Rakhine province since the campaign began August 2017. Many more are thought to have been either tortured and raped.

Myanmar has justified the military’s actions as necessary to combat terrorism.

Amnesty conceded that the civilian government Suu Kyi informally heads does not directly control the powerful security services. But it accused her of standing up for the crimes and obstructing international investigations into abuses.

It added that human rights campaigners and journalists continued to be detained and intimidated by the government since her party’s victory.

Last month, Suu Kyi was stripped of her honourary Canadian citizenship over her failure to speak up for the Rohingyas. She has also been stripped of the US Holocaust Museum’s Elie Weisel award and Freedom of the City awards, which were withdrawn by Dublin, Edinburgh, Oxford, Glasgow and Newcastle.

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Trump shooter rejected by school shooting club for being really bad

He had slipped onto a rooftop 140 meters from the stage where Trump was speaking and began firing an AR-15-style semiautomatic rifle.

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Thomas Matthew Crooks, the 20-year-old man, who tried to assassinate former US President Donald Trump, was rejected by the school shooting club for being a really bad shooter and making crass jokes, as per the reports.

The Trump shooter was shot dead by the US Secret Services when he attacked the 78-year-old Republican Presidential candidate at a rally in Butler, Pennsylvania on July 13 evening. As Trump talked to a large crowd, a continuous gunfire broke out, causing widespread panic and prompting an immediate response from security personnel.

Crooks, who allegedly tried to assassinate former Trump, was a resident of Bethel Park, about an hour away from where the shocking shooting occurred, and he was a member of a local shooting club named Clairton Sportsmen’s Club. He was a high school student who was rejected from his high school’s rifle team for being a terrible shooter.

Crook was shot dead on Saturday, the Secret Service said in a statement. Afterward in the day, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) distinguished him as a Pennsylvanian man. He had slipped onto a rooftop 140 meters from the stage where Trump was speaking and began firing an AR-15-style semiautomatic rifle. According to officials, the continued gunfire scuffed Trump’s right ear. The officials added that a 50-year-old man was killed in this incident, and two others were critically injured.

According to reports, Crooks graduated from Bethel Park High School in 2022. He received a $ 500-star award, from the National Math and Science Enterprise, officials also told that Crooks does not have a criminal history according to Pennsylvania’s public court records. Police added that they have not yet identified the official motive behind it.

An individual who claimed to be an eyewitness of the incident, in an interview with the international media, the individual said he and the individuals he was with began yelling at the man, attempting to alarm security. According to the security agency, the shots appeared to have come from outside the area secured by the Secret Service.

Addressing a conference, the FBI stated that they were still working through the security apparatus that the Secret Service had in place to understand what potentially happened. Kevin Rojek, the special agent in charge of the Pittsburgh office, remarked that it was able to fire multiple shots. He included that there is going to be a long examination into exactly what took put and how the person was able to get to the area, what type of weapon he had.

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Donald Trump survives assassination attempt, bullet pierces his right ear

The dead gunman has been identified as Thomas Matthew Crooks, aged 20, from Bethel Park, Pennsylvania.

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Former US President Donald Trump was immediately rushed offstage to his motorcade, with blood visible on his right ear and streaking across his cheek after gunshots erupted at a rally in Pennsylvania in an apparent assassination attempt on Saturday evening.

According to US Secret Services, the former President was injured in a volley of gunfire at 6.15 pm from an elevated position outside the venue. The gunfire erupted a few minutes after Trump began his speech at a rally of supporters in Butler, a rural town in northwestern Pennsylvania.

The available witnesses and footage suggested around eight shots were fired at Trump. The footage also showed him grimacing and raising a hand to his right ear.

Following the incident, the US Secret Service officers neutralised the suspect at the scene. The agency’s spokesperson Anthony Guglielmi said that one bystander was killed in the shooting and two others were critically injured.

The US Secret Service, which is responsible for shielding current and former presidents, said the suspected shooter had fired multiple shots towards the stage and that the assailant was now dead.

The dead gunman has been identified as Thomas Matthew Crooks, aged 20, from Bethel Park, Pennsylvania.

The former US President Trump, in a post to his Truth Social network, said a bullet pierced the upper part of his right ear. Earlier, his spokesperson informed that he was receiving treatment at a local medical centre.

In a post, Trump said he knew immediately that something was wrong in that he claimed that he heard a whizzing sound, and shots, and immediately felt the bullet ripping through the skin. Trump further wrote that much bleeding took place, so he realized then what was happening.

The incident received condemnation from across the US political spectrum, with President Joe Biden, who spoke to Trump late on Saturday, describing the incident as sick and said the reason why the US needs to be united. There’s no place in America for this kind of violence, Biden asserted.

International leaders also have denounced the act of violence, with UK Prime Minister Keir Starmer saying, he was appalled by the shocking scenes. Japan’s Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said he would pray for President Trump’s speedy recovery. There were conflicting reports about the cause of Trump’s injury.

The Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi, also expressed his concern over the assassination attempt on former US President Trump and said violence has no place in politics and democracies.

PM Modi wished him a speedy recovery. “Our thoughts and prayers are with the family of the deceased, those injured and the American people”, he added. 

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Slovakia’s Prime Minister safe after surviving multiple gunshot

The assailant critically injured 59-year-old Prime Minister Fico by shooting him five times.

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Slovakia’s Deputy Prime Minister has confirmed today that Prime Minister Robert Fico’s condition is stable, with his life no longer in immediate danger, following an alarming incident where he was shot multiple times.

The Prime Minister was shot by an assassin while he was leaving a meeting on Wednesday.The assailant critically injured 59-year-old Prime Minister Fico by shooting him five times.

Following the attack, Prime Minister Fico was urgently airlifted to the hospital, where he underwent extensive surgery that lasted several hours. Defence Minister Robert Kalinak, addressing reporters from outside the hospital where Fico was receiving treatment on Wednesday, described the Prime Minister’s condition as critical, emphasising that he was fighting for his life.

The identity of the suspect is yet unconfirmed as the police further investigate. Unconfirmed reports from local media suggest that the assailant may have been a 71-year-old writer and political activist.

A video is currently circulating in which the alleged perpetrator can be seen. In the clip, he mentions that he does not agree with government policy.

The shooting has sparked international concern. Expressing shock over the incident, PM Modi conveyed his solidarity with the people of the Slovak Republic, wishing Prime Minister Fico a speedy recovery. He strongly condemned the shooting, denouncing it as a cowardly and despicable act while emphasising the need for unity against such violent acts and reaffirming India’s support for Slovakia during these challenging times.

Earlier, EU chief Ursula von der Leyen also expressed disapproval of the vile attack on Prime Minister Robert Fico . On X, she stated that such acts of violence have no place in society, undermining democracy, the most precious common good. Von der Leyen extended her thoughts to Prime Minister Fico and his family, highlighting the European Union’s solidarity during this challenging time. The condemnation from EU leadership underscores the gravity of the situation and the need for a united stance against violence targeting political figures. As the investigation unfolds, international support for Slovakia remains steadfast, emphasising the importance of upholding democratic principles and ensuring the safety of leaders across Europe.

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