London: Britain called on Friday for Myanmar
democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi to be immediately and
unconditionally released as she prepares to mark yet another
birthday in detention.
"Aung San Suu Kyi is 65 this Saturday, having spent 14 of
the last 20 years under house arrest," said Foreign Secretary
"Her continued detention, and that of more than 2,100
other political prisoners in Burma (Myanmar), contravenes
international human rights law and casts a long shadow over
planned elections in the country.
"I urge the military regime to release all political
prisoners immediately and unconditionally, and respect the
human rights of Burma`s people."
The Nobel Peace Prize laureate studied at Oxford
University and married a British academic, Michael Aris. He
died in 1999, ten years after she was placed under house
arrest for helping set up the National League for Democracy.
The NLD won the last election in 1990 but was never
allowed to take office, and Suu Kyi is barred from standing in
polls planned for some time this year.
Jeremy Browne, Britain`s minister for southeast Asia,
said Myanmar`s military junta should accept the democracy
icon`s offer of dialogue to help the country move to civilian
and accountable government.
"This is more than a human tragedy -- it is a tragic
waste of talent, vision and leadership for a country that
desperately needs all three," he said.
"The people of Burma have suffered enough. A genuine
transition to civilian and accountable government is long
overdue. I am committed to making sure the UK plays a part in
helping them achieve this."