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Aung San Suu Kyi News Round-Up: Mandela Can Sleep Easy

by | 13th, November 2010

AUNG San Suu Kyi is free and at large in Burma. She is the leader of the National League for Democracy. She is a Nobel peace laureate. But she’s no Mandela.

By way of background to her release: There have been elections in Burma – the country’s first in 20 years. The military are likely to secure around 80% of the vote. See, democracy works…

News and Views:

Says Kyi:

We haven’t seen each other for long time. I feel very happy to see you all here. As I don’t have a loudspeaker, I can’t speak to reach you all. If you can listen quietly, you can hear my voice. Otherwise, it’s very hard to speak. You all have to help each other. If people from the back can’t hear what I say, then people from the front role are able to share what you hear.”

She says, “Let’s bomb Beijing!”

Others Not Out

Labour activist Ma Su Su Nway, who was arrested on Nov 13, 2007, while attempting to put up an anti-government poster. A year later, she was sentenced to 12 years and six months, later commuted to eight years and four months. She is serving her sentence in the remote Kale Prison, 680km from Rangoon.

U Gambari, one of the monks who led the September 2007 ”Saffron Revolution” protests. The regime sentenced U Gambari to 68 years in jail, 12 to be served as hard labour.

The Future

Any celebrations, however, are likely to be shortlived. Any thought that she will or can do a Nelson Mandela and walk to power in triumph is misbegotten. Should she opt to return to the hustings, or cause the regime any other kind of embarrassment, she will find herself confined to her residence for a fourth time, and probably without any eventual release date – Justin Wintle, Telegraph

Or Else (Maybe)

French President Nicolas Sarkozy said in a statement:

“France will be extremely attentive to the conditions in which Madame Aung San Suu Kyi enjoys her refound liberty.”

“Any restrictions on her freedom of movement and expression would constitute a new unacceptable denial of her rights.”

Viva La Tweetolution!

Little is known about her plans although her lawyer says she has expressed a desire to join Twitter to reach out to the internet generation. – Sky

Carry On Regardless

Despite its views and values, the government of Burma has no shortage of friends around. The Association of South East Asian Nations (Asean) said the election was a “significant step forward”. Asean’s Vietnamese chair said in a statement published by the Vietnamese state media on Tuesday: “Asean encourages Myanmar [Burma] to continue to accelerate the process of national reconciliation and democratisation for stability and development in the country.” China offered full backing to the election. – Aung Zaw

Blah Blah Blah (Barack Obama is speaking)

“She is a hero of mine and a source of inspiration for all who work to advance basic human rights in Burma and around the world”

It’s All About PR

For Zoya Phan, international co-ordinator at Burma Campaign UK, the release of Ms Suu Kyi was about “public relations, not democratic reform”.

“I am thrilled to see our democracy leader free at last, but the release is not part of any political process, instead it is designed to get positive publicity for the dictatorship after the blatant rigging of elections on November 7,” she said. – Sky

It might have been when she was inside…




Posted: 13th, November 2010 | In: Politicians Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed: RSS 2.0 | TrackBack | Permalink