Rohingya Genocide Trial Sends Important Signal

Please see below statement from Refugees International Deputy Director for Africa, Asia, and the Middle East Daniel P. Sullivan:

“The continuation of the Rohingya genocide trial at the International Court of Justice is an important signal of accountability. The case against the state of Myanmar for its crimes against the Rohingya people comes even as the Myanmar military continues to commit atrocities against other ethnic minorities and anyone who protests their illegal seizure of power.

The failure to properly address the crimes committed against the Rohingya has undoubtedly emboldened the military junta’s sense of impunity—leading up to the coup that is now wreaking havoc across the country. The ICJ trial exposes these crimes and sets the stage for a more inclusive and peaceful future Myanmar by demonstrating to the perpetrators and victims alike that such violence will not be tolerated.  

The trial is also a reminder of the fact that the United States is yet to recognize, itself, the extent of the crimes against the Rohingya. It is long past time for the United States to take that important step and make an official determination that the crimes committed against the Rohingya people are crimes against humanity and genocide.”

Refugees International has urged U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken to make a Rohingya genocide determination, including through a joint letter from 95 organizations. The letter builds on Refugees International’s efforts with the previous U.S. administration as part of the #CallitGenocide campaign, which included a nearly 9,000-signature petition and a legal and human rights experts letter (signed by two senior officials in the Biden administration). Refugees International’s analysis on why the attacks on the Rohingya constitute genocide can be found here.

For more information or to schedule an interview, please contact Refugees International Director of Communications Sarah Sheffer at or +1 202 540 7029.

Photo Caption: Rohingya refugees watch ICJ proceedings at a restaurant in a refugee camp on December 12, 2019 in Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh. Photo by Allison Joyce/Getty Images.