News / Asia

Burma's Aung San Suu Kyi Asks for US Support for Rights Inquiry

Burmese democracy icon Aung San Suu Kyi speaks to journalists after meeting with European Union special envoy to Myanmar Piero Fassino and European Union diplomatic official Robert Cooper at her home in Rangoon (file photo)
Burmese democracy icon Aung San Suu Kyi speaks to journalists after meeting with European Union special envoy to Myanmar Piero Fassino and European Union diplomatic official Robert Cooper at her home in Rangoon (file photo)
TEXT SIZE - +

The leader of Burma’s opposition movement has urged the U.S. Congress to do what it can to make sure that her government adheres to a United Nations Human Rights Council resolution on Burma.

Aung San Suu Kyi told members of Congress a resolution that the U.N. Human Rights Council passed in March is a clear guide for what needs to be done to bring democracy to Burma.

Among other things, the resolution calls on Burma’s government to free political prisoners, grant civil liberties such as the freedom of expression, and allow regular visits by the U.N. special rapporteur on human rights in Burma.

VOA's Ira Mellman interviews Representative Manzullo, Chairman of the subcommittee on Asian and Pacific affairs.

“This resolution covers all the needs of Burma today, all the political needs, let me say, of Burma today. The requests, the urgings, the demands of this resolution are very much in line with what we in Burma think is needed to start Burma along a genuine process of democratization," she said.

Her videotaped comments were played Wednesday to members of the U.S. House subcommittee on Asian and Pacific affairs. They held a hearing on last November’s elections, the first in Burma in 20 years.

The leader of the National League for Democracy was cautious in her criticism of Burma’s new government. But she called for an independent judiciary to ensure the rule of law, and she said that if the government is sincere in wanting to bring democracy to the country, it should free political prisoners.

She closed her message by thanking Congress for its support for democratic reform in Burma. "With the help and support of true friends, I'm sure we will be able to tread the path of democracy, not easily and perhaps not as quickly as we would like, but surely and steadily," she said.

Watch the Nobel Laureate's videotaped remarks to the U.S. Congressional hearing:

Burma’s opposition, human rights activists and many governments, such as the United States, say the elections merely solidified military rule, because military members and a party backed by the military dominate the parliament.

The Burmese government is considered one of the most repressive in the world. Human rights activists and opposition members say Burma holds more than 2,000 political prisoners, and uses forced labor, long prison sentences and military attacks against minority groups to suppress opposition.

The National League for Democracy won the last free elections held in 1990, but the military never let the party take power.

The NLD did not participate in last year’s election because it refused to purge Aung San Suu Kyi and other imprisoned members from its rolls, which was required under new election laws.

Aung San Suu Kyi, who spent most of the past 20 years under some form of detention, was released shortly after the November elections.

You May Like

Wikipedia Proves Useful for Tracking Flu

Technique gave better results than Center for Disease Control (CDC) and Google’s Flu Trends More

Turkish Law Gives Spy Agency Controversial Powers

Parliament approves legislation to bolster powers of intelligence service, which government claims is necessary to modernize and deal with new threats Turkey faces More

Video Face of American Farmer Changing

Average American farmer is now 58 years old, and farmers 65 and older are the fastest growing segment of the population More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Face of American Farmer is Changingi
X
Mike Osborne
April 18, 2014
The average American farmer is now 58 years old, and farmers 65 and older are the fastest growing segment of the population. It’s a troubling trend signaling big changes ahead for American agriculture as aging farmers retire. Reporter Mike Osborne says a new report from the U.S. Census Bureau is suggesting what some of those changes might look like... and why they might not be so troubling.
Video

Video Face of American Farmer is Changing

The average American farmer is now 58 years old, and farmers 65 and older are the fastest growing segment of the population. It’s a troubling trend signaling big changes ahead for American agriculture as aging farmers retire. Reporter Mike Osborne says a new report from the U.S. Census Bureau is suggesting what some of those changes might look like... and why they might not be so troubling.
Video

Video Donetsk Governor: Ukraine Military Assault 'Delicate But Necessary'

Around a dozen state buildings in eastern Ukraine remain in the hands of pro-Russian protesters who are demanding a referendum on self-rule. The governor of the whole Donetsk region is among those forced out by the protesters. He spoke to VOA's Henry Ridgwell from his temporary new office in Donetsk city.
Video

Video Drones May Soon Send Data From High Seas

Drones are usually associated with unmanned flying vehicles, but autonomous watercraft are also becoming useful tools for jobs ranging from scientific exploration to law enforcement to searching for a missing airliner in the Indian Ocean. VOA’s George Putic reports on sea-faring drones.
Video

Video New Earth-Size Planet Found

Not too big, not too small. Not too hot, not too cold. A newly discovered planet looks just right for life as we know it, according to an international group of astronomers. VOA’s Steve Baragona has more.
Video

Video Copts in Diaspora Worry About Future in Egypt

Around 10 percent of Egypt’s population belong to the Coptic faith, making them the largest Christian minority in the Middle East. But they have become targets of violence since the revolution three years ago. With elections scheduled for May and the struggle between the Egyptian military and Islamists continuing, many Copts abroad are deeply worried about the future of their ancient church. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky visited a Coptic church outside Washington DC.
Video

Video Critics Say Venezuelan Protests Test Limits of Military's Support

During the two months of deadly anti-government protests that have rocked the oil-rich nation of Venezuela, President Nicolas Maduro has accused the opposition of trying to initiate a coup. Though a small number of military officers have been arrested for allegedly plotting against the government, VOA’s Brian Padden reports the leadership of the armed forces continues to support the president, at least for now.
Video

Video More Millenials Unplug to Embrace Board Games

A big new trend in the U.S. toy industry has more consumers switching off their high-tech gadgets to play with classic toys, like board games. This is especially true among the so-called millenial generation - those born in the 1980's and 90's. Elizabeth Lee has more from an unusual café in Los Angeles, where the new trend is popular and business is booming.
Video

Video Google Buys Drone Company

In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
AppleAndroid