AmericanSage

Saturday, May 27, 2006

Suu Kyi's House Arrest Extended By Myanmar Junta. UN Played, China Silent.

The enemies of democracy sure are getting ballsy these days. While the international community hoped with baited breath for the release of Aung San Suu Kyi in Myanmar this week, the military junta illegally ruling that country has opted instead to extend Suu Kyi's house arrest sentence. Suu Kyi, a democratic leader and Nobel Peace Prize winner, has been held by the junta for 10 of the last 17 years. Suu Kyi's National League For Democracy won a 1990 electoral landslide the nation's military government still refuses to recognize.

Hopes for the leader's release were heightened as international pressure mounted to coincide with the junta's review of Suu Kyi's case. In this context, the United States, Thailand, Malaysia and other Southeast Asian nations made renewed calls for Suu Kyi's release. In what was seen by many as a major concession, junta leaders allowed Suu Kyi to meet with high-ranking UN official Ibrahim Gambari kast week. AFP notes this was Suu Kyi's " her first contact with the international community in more than two years." Regional heavyweight and human rights paragon China remains curiously absent from the league of nations demanding Suu Kyi's release. Hmmm.

Also from AFP: "Military analyst Win Min told AFP in Bangkok that allowing the Gambari visit may have been a mere gesture by the junta to appease the international community. 'The Gambari visit was to reduce international pressure, that's it,' he said. 'The best they can offer is more access when the UN visits.'"

Sound familiar?

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