flareneld's oven: Aung San Suu Kyi freed

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Aung San Suu Kyi freed

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Celebrations as Burma's Aung San Suu Kyi released

BBC News

World leaders and human rights groups have reacted with joy at the release from house arrest of Burma's pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi.

Ms Suu Kyi walked from her Rangoon house at the end of her sentence on Saturday, having been detained for most of the past two decades.
Her lawyers say no conditions have been placed on her freedom.
Ms Suu Kyi is expected to address her supporters on Sunday and also meet diplomats and members of her NLD party.
But correspondents say it is not yet clear what political role she will be able to play.
Her release comes six days after Burma held its first elections in 20 years - they were won by the military but widely condemned as a sham.
Mr Suu Kyi's National League for Democracy (NLD) won the election in 1990 but were never allowed to take power. She has been under house arrest or in prison almost continually ever since.

Thousands of Ms Suu Kyi's supporters had gathered outside her home in Rangoon since Friday to await her release.
No official announcement was given but in the late morning on Saturday, her release papers were delivered to her house and she emerged to huge celebrations - the cheers were so loud she was unable to address the crowds for about half an hour.
Ms Suu Kyi told the crowd there was "a time to be quiet and a time to talk", and that she would visit the now-disbanded NLD at their headquarters on Sunday.
US President Barack Obama said Ms Suu Kyi was a "hero" of his while UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said she was an "inspiration".
But both leaders warned that her release should not mask the continued political oppression in Burma
Ms Suu Kyi was first detained in 1989. Her latest period of house arrest was extended by 18 months in August last year, following an incident in which a US man swam across the lake to her home.
Correspondents say it is too early to say whether Ms Suu Kyi's release will have a significant impact on Burma's political scene, and to what extent she will be free to engage in political activity.
Her release comes too late for her to take part in the elections, which were billed by the junta as marking the transition from military to civilian rule but were widely criticised as being neither free nor fair.
The NLD had refused to contest the election, partly because new electoral laws prevented anyone with a criminal record - therefore many of its leaders and members - could not run for office.
Its refusal meant it is no longer legally recognised as a party, and so its most famous democracy campaigner has no official political status and an unclear role.

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