Malaysia Foreign Minister pushes for Asean meeting on Suu Kyi verdict

Malaysia Foreign Minister pushes for

Asean meeting on Suu Kyi verdict

Foreign Minister Anifah Aman today pressed for an urgent meeting among his Asean counterparts after the Burma junta ordered Aung San Suu Kyi to stay under house arrest for 18 months.

“I think there is a need for Asean foreign ministers to have an urgent meeting to discuss this issue, which is of grave concern,” Foreign Minister Anifah Aman told AFP.

“With this sentence there is no possibility for Aung San Suu Kyi to participate in the general election next year which should be free, fair and inclusive,” he added.

Democracy icon Aung San Suu Kyi was sentenced to three years’ jail and hard labour by a Burmese court earlier Tuesday, but the head of the ruling junta commuted the punishment to 18 months’ house arrest.

The court convicted her on charges of breaching the terms of her house arrest after a bizarre incident in which an American man, John Yettaw, swam to her lakeside house in May.

Anifah expressed disappointment with the Burma’s junta’s decision to convict Suu Kyi, saying members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) were hoping for her to participate in next year’s polls.

“I am disappointed that they have found her guilty. That is very disappointing,” he said.

“We were hoping that the junta will release her unconditionally and will hold an election to enable Suu Kyi and other political detainees to participate in that election,” Anifah said.

Khairy: Suspend Burma

In another development, Umno Youth chief Khairy Jamaluddin urged Asean to immediately suspend Burma.

Writing in his blog, Khairy said that the verdict against Suu Kyi was widely viewed as the culmination of a sham trial designed to prevent her from participating in the planned elections next year.

“Recent developments in Myanmar (Burma) represent a black mark in Asean’s history. The Suu Kyi verdict is a disgusting stain on Asean’s reputation, one that must be removed quickly and decisively.

“An immediate suspension of Burma’s membership in the regional bloc is the only option open for Asean to save it from being found guilty by association with the junta,” he said.

– AFP

One Response

  1. […] Source: Posted by ASEAN Tourism on Aug 11th, 2009 and filed under Feature. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed. […]

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