3.65 lakh want Suu Kyi's Nobel prize to be revoked

Aung San Suu Kyi was awarded the Nobel in 1991. Pic/AFP
Aung San Suu Kyi was awarded the Nobel in 1991. Pic/AFP

Thousands of people have signed an online petition calling for the Nobel committee to revoke Aung San Suu Kyi's 1991 peace prize over the Myanmar government's treatment of its Rohingya Muslims.

But the Norwegian Nobel committee has ruled out any such move, saying only that the work, which led to the awarding of the prize, was taken into account. The Change.Org petition has gathered over 3,65,000 signatures as of yesterday, reflecting growing outrage over a massive security sweep in Rakhine state by Myanmar forces after a series of deadly ambushes by Rohingya militants.

"The de facto ruler of Myanmar Aung San Suu Kyi has done virtually nothing to stop this crime against humanity in her country," the petition says.

In Oslo, Olav Njolstad, head of the Nobel Institute, said it was impossible to strip a Nobel laureate of an award once it has been bestowed. "Neither Alfred Nobel's will nor the statutes of the Nobel Foundation provide for the possibility that a Nobel Prize – whether for physics, chemistry, medicine, literature or peace – can be revoked," he told AFP.

"Only the efforts made by a laureate before the attribution of a prize are evaluated by the Nobel committee," he said, and not any subsequent actions.

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