BBC News – Aung San Suu Kyi aims for peaceful revolution

Two days after being freed from house arrest, pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi has said that her aim is for a peaceful revolution in Burma.

Speaking to the BBC at the headquarters of her National League for Democracy, she said she was sure democracy would come to Burma eventually, although she did not know how long it would take.

She said she would take any opportunity to speak to ruling generals.

Her release came six days after Burma held its first election in 20 years.

Aung San Suu Kyi’s party won the last election overwhelmingly but was never allowed to take power.

This poll was won by the biggest military-backed party, the Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP), but denounced by the West as being neither free nor fair.

‘Dialogue process’

The BBC’s world affairs editor, John Simpson, said several security officials watched the interview from across the street at NLD headquarters but did not intervene.

Aung San Suu Kyi said she did not want the junta to fall but to change and serve the country better.

“I don’t want to see the military falling. I want to see the military rising to dignified heights of professionalism and true patriotism,” she said.

“I think it’s quite obvious what the people want; the people just want better lives based on security and on freedom.”

But the pro-democracy leader also said she hoped for a non-violent end to military rule.

“I think we also have to try to make this thing happen… Velvet revolution sounds a little strange in the context of the military, but a non-violent revolution. Let’s put it that way,” she said.

The 65-year-old also confirmed that she was not subject to any restrictions on her freedom.

But she said that she was fully prepared to take the consequences if the military government decided to lock her up again for what she said or did.

The Nobel Peace Prize winner has spent 15 of the past 21 years in detention. She was released on Saturday when her latest period of house arrest expired.

On Sunday, thousands of jubilant supporters gathered to hear her speak, as she urged Burmese people to unite.

The most senior American diplomat in Burma, Charge d’Affaires Larry Dinger, told the BBC the US wanted to encourage reconciliation between the Burmese government and Ms Suu Kyi but no more.

“I don’t think it’s for the United States to determine her course or Burma’s course, frankly. From our perspective it’s for the Burmese people to work that out,” he said.

“And the role that perhaps we can best play is to encourage all sides – the various players in the democratic community and the ethnic groups, the government in (the capital) Naypyidaw, to work through their issues.”….

BBC News – Newly freed Suu Kyi met with ‘screams of delight’

The Burmese military authorities have released the pro-democracy leader, Aung San Suu Kyi, from house arrest.

Reporting from outside the gates of her home, the BBC’s Adam Mynott said she tried unsuccessfully for 20 minutes to quiet the rapturous welcome of her supporters.

BBC News – What will Suu Kyi’s political future be?

Aung San Suu Kyi’s party won the only free election ever held in Burma in 1990.

The Army overturned the result and she has spent most of the years since under house arrest becoming a living symbol of the country’s struggle against military oppression.

But if she is released, can she live up to her supporters’ expectations of her?

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