Burma Action Ireland Condemns Outrageous and Unjust Conviction of Aung San Suu Kyi

11 Aug 2009

Burma Action Ireland today condemned the outrageous and unjust conviction of Aung San Suu Kyi. Nobel Peace Prize winner Aung Suu Kyi was not given the maximum 5 year prison sentence, but instead will serve 18 months under house arrest. The regime will try to present this as leniency in order to avoid international sanctions. This period of detention keeps Aung San Suu Kyi in detention during rigged elections due in 2010. The elections bring in a new constitution which is designed to legalise military rule. The conviction was the culmination of weeks of a farcical trial which saw defence witnesses and even the original trial judges dismissed in an attempt to ensure that the conviction would be secured with no hitches.

Aung San Suu Kyi, who last month was awarded the Amnesty International Ambassador of Conscience Award 2009, was arrested in May this year just days before she was due for release from her current term of house arrest. The arrest followed an intrusion by American John Yettaw into the compound of Suu Kyi where she has been held under military guard for 14 of the last 19 years under house arrest. Daw Suu Kyi was charged with breaching the terms of her house arrest by allowing the man to enter her compound, despite the fact that he was an uninvited and unwelcome intruder. The arrest sparked a global outcry of injustice and the subsequent trial and sentencing of Daw Suu Kyi has been widely predicted by the global community as a ploy by the Burmese military to keep Aung San Suu Kyi locked up until after the sham 2010 elections due to take place in May next year.

BAI Chairperson Gearoid Kilgallen condemned the sentencing stating, “it will be a total travesty of justice if the criminals, who misrule Burma, are allowed to get away with this preposterous sentence in respect of an utterly contrived and spurious charge against ASSK. These outlaws, for such is what they undoubtedly are, show gross contempt for human rights and democratic values and must be brought to heel. It is time for all relevant international bodies to set about imposing comprehensive and effective sanctions on the recalcitrant regime. There has to be a total and enforceable ban on the sale to Burma of all arms and military equipment. I believe that we can count on our Minister for Foreign Affairs Micheal Martin to pursue early action in this regard within the EU and the UN”.

Burma Action Ireland joins global solidarity groups in calling for a UN Security Council arms embargo on Burma and a UN Security Council commission of inquiry into crimes against humanity committed by Burma’s military regime including the unlawful arrest and detention of over 2100 political prisoners.  Burma Action Ireland will stage a demonstration at the Dublin embassies of four of the permanent UN Security Council member countries tomorrow Wednesday August 12th 2009. Burma Action Ireland members and supporters will meet at the US Embassy, Elgin Road, Ballsbridge at 3.30pm and will spend a short time there before moving on to each of the French, British and Chinese embassies.

Burma Action Ireland

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