Suu Kyi, a former political prisoner of Myanmar's then-ruling military junta in the 1990s who now rules as state counsellor, was awarded the European parliament's Sakharov Prize in 1990.
The European Parliament has suspended Myanmar leader Aung San Suu Kyi from the group of former winners of its top human rights prize because of her “failure to act and her acceptance" of the oppression of the Rohingya Muslim ethnic group.
A long-time political prisoner before she came to power, Suu Kyi was once admired for her non-violent struggle against Myanmar’s military rule and she won the 1991 Nobel Peace Prize.
Suu Kyi came to power after a landslide election victory in 2015 that ended half a century of army rule.
But in recent years, she has been rejected internationally for Myanmar’s oppression of the Rohingya. More than 700,000 Rohingya fled to neighbouring Bangladesh to escape the army’s brutal counterinsurgency campaign in 2017.
“The decision (...) to exclude Aung San Suu Kyi formally from all activities of the community of Sakharov Prize laureates is a response to her failure to act and her acceptance of the ongoing crimes against the Rohingya community in Myanmar," the EU Parliament said in a statement on Thursday.
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Her stance on the Rohingyas has seen her stripped of other awards, calls for the Nobel committee to revoke the Nobel Peace Prize that she won in 1991 and criticism from former supporters.
As state counsellor, Suu Kyi does not oversee the military, but she has repeatedly denied accusations that the army committed genocide against the Rohingya, defending her country against the charges in the UN court in The Hague.
The EU parliament said she was not stripped of the prize or asked to return the $59,000 prize money because the award was for her pro-democracy role in opposition at the time, when she was repeatedly imprisoned and placed under house arrest until her release in 2010.
Suu Kyi won the Sakharov Prize in 1990 but was only able to collect it 23 years later.
She looks set to keep her position as state counsellor after the November 8 general election, with her National League for Democracy party widely expected to again win the most seats.
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