Maldives to intervene in support of Rohingya Muslims; Amal Clooney to represent country

The Maldives will be filing a declaration of intervention in support of the Rohingya people at the International Court of Justice.

While delivering his statement at the High-Level Segment of the 43rd Session of the Human Rights Council, Foreign Minister Abdulla Shahid announced that the Maldives will be filing a written declaration of intervention at the International Court of Justice in support of the Rohingya people.

In line with the decision taken at the 14th Islamic Summit of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation, the Republic of Maldives intends to extend its support for the efforts to seek accountability for the acts of genocide committed against the Rohingya people, said the Foreign Ministry. The decision to file the declaration was taken after President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih along with the Cabinet concluded that there are strong grounds to intervene in the case submitted by The Gambia in support of the Rohingya people, revealed the ministry.

Amal Clooney of Doughty Street Chambers has been appointed to represent the Maldives in the case before the International Court of Justice. Clooney is an accomplished barrister and humanitarian lawyer, and represented former president and current Speaker of the Parliament Mohamed Nasheed in the past. While the government has assured confidence in her ability to seek accountability and judicial remedies for the displaced Rohingya people, the government did not reveal the fees being charged for representation. However, it has been rumored that a fee of MVR 30,000 will be charged per hour.

The Maldives has been a consistent advocate for accountability against the atrocities committed against the Rohingya people. The government said it welcomes the unanimous decision of the International Court of Justice to order provisional measures to secure the rights of victims and prevent the destruction of evidence in the ongoing case. The Maldives will continue to advocate on humanitarian grounds to bring the perpetrators of genocide to justice and calls for the unhindered and safe return of the Rohingya people to their homes, the Foreign Ministry has assured.

Last January, the International Court of Justice ordered Burmese authorities to take all measures within its power to protect Rohingya Muslims from the genocide being committed against them after a 17-judge panel had found that the acts being committed against Rohingyan Muslims were in violation of the 1948 Genocide Convention.

The court ordered Burmese authorities to report back on their progress within four months, and ordered Burma to report regularly to the tribunal every six month after that until the case is concluded.