News / Asia

Aung San Suu Kyi Calls for Reconciliation in Burma

Burma's Aung San Suu Kyi: Focus on Reconciliationi
|| 0:00:00
X
Carolyn Presutti
September 23, 2012
Burmese democracy activist Aung San Suu Kyi is in the United States on a 17-day visit. She spoke Saturday at a college in New York on the fifth day of her tour. VOA's Carolyn Presutti was there.
TEXT SIZE - +
Burmese democracy activist Aung San Suu Kyi is in the United States on a 17-day visit.  She spoke Saturday at a college in New York on the fifth day of her tour.
 
Burmese Americans waited in line for more than six hours to see their heroine - the woman they call Mommy Suu, greeting her with chants of “be healthy.”
 
Aung San Suu Kyi was released two years ago after serving nearly 19 years of her life under house arrest by Burma’s military government. The country is rich with ethnic diversity which has also been a source of violent conflict. But in New York, different ethnic groups handed her gifts. And, she offered advice.
 
“Don't focus on the conflict. Focus on the reconciliation,” she said.
 
It's a different concept in a country where transparency is foreign and compromise is new. Filmmaker Robert Lieberman can attest to that. He spent for years in Burma secretly shooting the documentary “They Call It Myanmar”, for which he also interviewed Aung San Suu Kyi.
 
 “She's probably right now the only person who can hold this country together,” says Lieberman.
At another location, on campus at New York’s Queen College, Aung San Suu Kyi tailored her speech to students. She told them to appreciate their freedoms.
 
"I hope you will all understand what it is like to struggle for human rights and democracy and human rights in Burma. It is just the way you have heard about it. It may seem to you not quite real until you meet it face-to-face. And then you know what it's really like.”

Sapna Chhatpar Considine protested on Burma's behalf for years and was on site to see Aung San Suu Kyi. Considine said she discovered her passion for human rights as a college student.
 
“I think that type of message resonates on campuses all over the world and she knows that. She knows the power of the student groups. She's seen it in Burma. She's seen it throughout the world.”
 
Aung San Suu Kyi, now 67, will not be able to run for president when the next elections are held in Burma in three years because of restrictions in the country’s constitution. She says she wants the youth to direct the future of Burma, saying that they have the freedom to question their lawmakers and to demand change -- something she was punished for time and time again in her country.

Carolyn Presutti

Carolyn Presutti is an award-winning television reporter who works out of VOA’s Washington headquarters.  She has won an Emmy, many Associated Press awards, and a Clarion for her coverage of Haiti,  national politics, the southern economy, and the 9/11 bombing anniversary.  In 2013, Carolyn aired exclusive stories on the Syrian medical crisis and the Asiana plane crash, and was VOA’s chief reporter from the Boston Marathon bombing.

You May Like

Abuja Blast Impacts Lives, Livelihoods

Officials say they are looking at ways to help bombing victims and boosting security More

Cambodia Technology Adviser Criticizes Cybercrime Draft Law

Phu Leewood says current criminal code can be used to prosecute offenders and that there is no need for a separate law More

Photogallery A Year Later, Boston Remembers Deadly Marathon Bombings

City pauses to honor victims and salute emergency workers who came to their assistance in frantic moments after blasts More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Google Buys Drone Companyi
|| 0:00:00
...
 
🔇
X
George Putic
April 15, 2014
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.
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.
Video

Video Ray Bonneville Sings the Blues and More on New CD

Singer/songwriter Ray Bonneville has released a new CD called “Easy Gone” with music that reflects his musical and personal journey from French-speaking Canada to his current home in Austin,Texas. The eclectic artist’s fan base extends from Texas to various parts of North America and Europe. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Austin.
Video

Video Millions Labor in Pakistan's Informal Economy

The World Bank says that in Pakistan, roughly 70 percent work in the so-called informal sector, a part of the economy that is unregulated and untaxed. VOA's Sharon Behn reports from Islamabad on how the informal sector impact's the Pakistani economy.
Video

Video Passover Celebrates Liberation from Bondage

Jewish people around the world are celebrating Passover, a commemoration of their liberation from slavery in Egypt more than 3,300 years ago. According to scripture, God helped the Jews, led by Moses, escape bondage in Egypt and cross the Red Sea into the desert. Zlatica Hoke reports that the story of the Jewish Exodus resonates with other people trying to escape slave-like conditions.
Video

Video Police Pursue Hate Crime Charges Against Kansas Shooting Suspect

Prosecutors are sifting through the evidence in the wake of Sunday’s shootings in a suburb of Kansas City, Missouri that left three people dead. A suspect in the shootings taken into custody is a white supremacist. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, he was well-known to law enforcement agencies and human rights groups alike.
Video

Video In Eastern Ukraine, Pro-unity Activists Emerge from Shadows

Amid the pro-Russian uprisings in eastern Ukraine, there is a large body of activists who support Ukrainian unity and reject Russian intervention. Their activities have remained largely underground, but they are preparing to take on their pro-Moscow opponents, as Henry Ridgwell reports from the eastern city of Donetsk.
Video

Video Basket Maker’s Skills Have World Reach

A prestigious craft show in the U.S. capital offers one-of-a-kind creations by more than 120 artists working in a variety of media. As VOA’s Julie Taboh reports from Washington, one artist lucky enough to be selected says sharing her skills with women overseas is just as significant.
Video

Video UN Report Urges Speedier Action to Avoid Climate Disaster

A new United Nations report says the world must switch from fossil fuels to cleaner energy sources to control the effects of climate change. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released the report (Sunday) following a meeting of scientists and government representatives in Berlin. The comprehensive review follows two recent IPCC reports that detail the certainty of climate change, its impacts and in this most recent report what to do about it. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble has the details.
AppleAndroid