Suu Kyi sees role as facilitator of network for Myanmar democracy
Myanmar democracy icon reiterates she did not aspire to political office.
Singapore: Myanmar democracy icon Aung San Suu Kyi said she wanted to act as a facilitator for an international network to promote democracy in her military-ruled country, a Singapore news report said on Thursday.
The 65-year-old Nobel Peace laureate, who spent 15 of the past 20 years in detention, was released from her latest house arrest on November 13.
The international community should cooperate more closely to support democracy in Myanmar, Suu Kyi said in a telephone interview with the Straits Times.
"That`s what I want to do at the moment. I see that as my role - as a facilitator of such a network," she said, adding that it could include the US, the European Union, the Association of South-East Asian Nations and other Asian countries.
"If they could coordinate their efforts, I think it would help the process of democratisation in Burma greatly," she told the newspaper, using the old name for Myanmar.
She said she still believed in continuing a peaceful dialogue to engage Myanmar`s military junta, who staged and won the country`s first elections in two decades a few days before her release.
However, there had not been much progress "in the sense we haven`t heard anything from them", Suu Kyi said. "We will have to make them understand that there is a need for change," she was quoted as saying.
Suu Kyi reiterated that she did not aspire to political office. "What I aspire to is to establish a strong and lasting democratic system in Burma," she said.
"I don`t think it is important who is president if the democratic institutions are genuine and strong and in place," she said.
"Change has to come from the people and there is nothing more important than a change in which people think," the opposition leader said.
"First of all, we have to make them understand that their power lies in unity, that it lies in their ability to communicate with each other and to be able to make their hopes and aspirations felt by (the authorities)," Suu Kyi said.