Burmese Authorities Free Democracy Leader Aung San Suu Kyi

  • 14 years ago
Over the weekend, Burmese democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi was freed after spending the last seven years under house arrest. At her first major speech since her release, she called for freedom in Burma once again.


[Aung San Suu Kyi, Pro-democracy Leader]:
"You think it's easy to get democracy just by one person acting alone? It is quite valuable. For valuable things, we need a lot of sacrifices. It cannot be achieved by one person. If so, it's not democratic. If people say 'We want democracy, Aung San Suu Kyi, do it for us,' you will not get democracy, but dictator Aung San Suu Kyi."

Suu Kyi's first major speech since her release Saturday left little doubt she would resume an influential political role in one of the world's most isolated and oppressive countries.

[Aung San Suu Kyi, Pro-democracy Leader]:
"If my people are not free, how can you say I'm free? We are not free. Either we are all free together or we are all not free together."

The 65-year-old Nobel peace laureate offered an olive branch to the military junta, saying she isn’t angry at those who kept her detained for 15 of the past 21 years.

[Aung San Suu Kyi, Pro-democracy Leader]:
"During my years of detention, I have been treated well. I must, I do appreciate that on a personal level, but that's not enough."

Suu Kyi is expected to rebuild her National League for Democracy party.

She also called for the help of other pro-democracy parties, saying she would be willing to work with anyone to bring democracy to Burma.

[Aung San Suu Kyi, Pro-democracy Leader]:
"All those parties and groups in Burma who truly wish for democracy, I would like their help as well."

Suu Kyi's popularity is still a threat to the military. However, her release may give the junta a hint of legitimacy after last week's election, the country’s first in 20 years. It was ridiculed as a sham to prolong military rule behind a facade (fuh SAHD) of democracy.