Aung San Suu Kyi 'could lose' Freedom of the City of London

Aung San Suu Kyi Image copyright BEN STANSALL
Image caption The City of London Corporation is investigating a procedure to strip Aung San Suu Kyi of her honorary title

The City of London is to consider stripping Aung San Suu Kyi of her Freedom of the City honour.

The de-facto leader of Myanmar would become the first person to lose the award, amid reports of ethnic cleansing of Rohingya Muslims.

Tens of thousands of Muslims have fled their homes amid widespread reports of killing and sexual violence in the country's north.

Currently there is no procedure to strip a freeman of their status.

The Common Council - the authority's main legislative body - has passed a motion to investigate whether an honorary freedom may be revoked.

Thomas Anderson, one of the two councillors who tabled the motion, said: "This is the City accepting that it made a mistake in granting Aung San Suu Kyi's Freedom of the City of London."

When the award was made in May protestors had demonstrated against the decision, citing growing concerns over the treatment of Rohingya people.

Image copyright Reuters
Image caption Rohingya Muslims have been pouring into Bangladesh since 25 August

The Nobel Peace Prize winner spent years under house arrest in Rangoon as a campaigner for democracy while Myanmar (formerly Burma) was ruled by a military dictatorship.

She became a worldwide figurehead for freedom before leading her National League for Democracy party to victory in open elections in November 2015.

But her failure to denounce the military or address allegations of ethnic cleansing has been criticised by world leaders and human rights groups.

The trouble erupted in August when Rohingya militants attacked security posts, triggering a military crackdown.

Earlier this month Ms Suu Kyi was stripped of the freedom of the city of Oxford, where she studied and raised her family, over her response to the Rohingya crisis.

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