Friday, May 22, 2009

Regime Accused of Trying to Humiliate Suu Kyi

The Irrawaddy News

Burmese activists accuse the authorities of trying to humiliate opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi by including in the prosecution evidence at her trial personal possessions taken from her home.

The evidence, listed in a police file obtained by The Irrawaddy, includes two sarongs, four towels, a T-shirt bearing the words “Don’t ever give up,” a pillow, map, plate and spoon.

The file also lists 54 items belonging to the American John W Yettaw who is on trial in the same Insein Prison court after swimming to her lakeside home.

“The regime tries to damage her dignity internationally,” said Bo Kyi, joint-secretary of the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners-Burma, a Burmese human rights group based in the Thai-Burmese border town of Mae Sot.

“Daw Aung San Suu Kyi is trusted by a majority of the people, including ethnic nationalities and soldiers,” Bo Kyi said. “Therefore Snr-Gen Than Shwe is jealous of her. As a result, he tries to destroy her good image.”

A Rangoon journalist in the former capital, speaking on condition of anonymity, said the junta was trying to “score points” by humiliating Suu Kyi.

Vicitta, a Burmese monk who marched in the September 2007 demonstrations and now lives in Penang, Malaysia, said the junta brought the case against Suu Kyi in an attempt to remove her from the public eye when the country is called on to vote in the 2010 election.

“Authorities might think the charge against Suu Kyi damages her internationally by showing that a man was staying at her home,” said one Rangoon political observer.

“But, in reality, the opposite is occurring and the world now knows the regime’s cunning motives.”

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