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September 24, 2017

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Suu Kyi to skip UN General Assembly to focus on Rohingya crisis

YANGON - Myanmar's de facto leader Aung San Suu Kyi will skip the UN General Assembly in order to deal with the Rohingya crisis at home, local media reported Wednesday.

"Under the current circumstances, the state counsellor has domestic issues that need attention," The Irrawaddy quoted Foreign Ministry spokesperson U Kyaw Zeya as saying.

Myanmar has drawn international condemnation for the deadly violence that has forced 370,000 Rohingya Muslims to flee to Bangladesh since the end of August.

Suu Kyi has also been been roundly criticized for not doing more to help the Rohingya, a group the UN has called one of the world's most persecuted minorities.

The Nobel peace laureate's formal titles are state counsellor and foreign minister.

Vice President Henry Van Thio will lead Myanmar's delegation to the UN General Assembly.

Bangladesh plans to raise the Rohingya issue at the UN General Assembly to ask Myanmar to take back its nationals and ensure their security.

On Wednesday, the UN Security Council will hold a closed-door meeting, requested by Britain and Sweden, to discuss the situation in violence-hit Rakhine state.

Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch on Tuesday slammed the UN for failing to put pressure on Myanmar's government to end the violence.

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