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Rights groups critical of Myanmar leader’s Rohingya speech

Myanmar State Counselor Aung San Suu Kyi arrives to deliver a speech to the nation over Rakhine and Rohingya situation, in Naypyitaw, Myanmar September 19, 2017. (Reuters)
NAYPYITAW, Myanmar: Rights groups are critical of Myanmar leader Aung San Suu Kyi’s defense of her country’s conduct in violence that has driven out more than 400,000 Rohingya Muslims, but some observers are glad that she invited diplomats to travel to northern Rakhine state to see for themselves.
Suu Kyi said Tuesday that most Muslims within the conflict zone stayed and that “more than 50 percent of their villages were intact.”
She says the government is working to restore normalcy. Rohingya, however, blame government forces for driving them out.
Amnesty International regional director James Gomez accused Suu Kyi of “a mix of untruths and victim-blaming.”
But Andrew Kirkwood of the United Nations’ Office for Project services said it was positive that Suu Kyi welcomed the international community to parts of northern Rakhine.