An Argentinean court has moved one step closer to opening a historic investigation against Myanmar's military and civilian leadership over the genocide against the Rohingya people, the Burmese Rohingya Organisation UK (BROUK) said.
The court in Buenos Aires on Friday overturned a previous decision not to pursue a case against State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi and senior officers in the Myanmar military.
The court has instead requested now more information from the International Criminal Court (ICC) to ensure that a case in Argentina would not duplicate other justice efforts, BROUK said in a statement yesterday.
On 13 November 2019, BROUK petitioned Argentinian courts to open an investigation into the role of Myanmar's civilian and military leaders in committing genocide and crimes against humanity against the Rohingya.
Under the principle of universal jurisdiction, such crimes can be investigated anywhere in the world regardless of where they were committed.
The Argentine court's progress comes in addition to the ICC investigation and the Gambia's case filed in November last year against Myanmar for violating the Genocide Convention with the International Court of Justice (ICJ). In January this year, the ICJ imposed "provisional measures" on Myanmar as part of the case, essentially a legal injunction ordering the end to genocidal practices against the Rohingya.
The ICC in November last year approved an investigation into Myanmar for crimes against humanity against the Rohingya.
Argentinean human rights NGOs Grandmothers of the Plaza de Mayo and Foundation for Peace and Justice, founded by the Nobel Peace Prize Winner Adolfo Pérez Esquivel are supporting BROUK that is now being legally represented by Tomás Ojea Quintana, a prominent human rights lawyer and the former UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Myanmar (2008-2014).
The case in Argentina is the first universal jurisdiction case concerning the Rohingya genocide anywhere in the world.