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World not realizing military junta does not want to change, Burmese exile says

ICC Note:

“Tint Swe, member of the Burmese parliament-in-exile, talks to AsiaNews about the dramatic situation in his country. The phony conviction against pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi is indicative of the military regime’s brutality in light of weak international pressures.”

10/5/09 Burma (AsiaNews) “We cannot say that the court’s decision in Yangon on Friday to keep Aung San Suu Kyi under house arrest was a sentence. The judge read a decision that had been written by his bosses. In Myanmar, the law is what military leaders say it is.”

Tint Shwe, a member of the Burmese parliament-in-exile, gives an exclusive interview to AsiaNews about his country’s difficult situation after a court decided last Friday to uphold the 11 August decision to convict Burma’s opposition leader to 18 months of house arrest for letting John Yettaw, a US citizen, enter her house, in violation of the terms of her house arrest.

The conviction has come in for harsh criticism however, in great part because the event was highly irregularly and Aung San was in no way responsible for Yettaw’s visit.

Here is Tint Swe’s comment.

No one was surprised when Aung San’s appeal was rejected. Only her attorney Daw Suu was upset, because the lower court judge’s legal arguments were contrary to the true spirit of the law.

The court itself admitted that the 1974 constitution was no longer valid, yet relied on a 1975 regulation based on the abolished 1974 constitution, to convict her. The appeal court judge upheld the conviction, arguing that it was partly correct. The US citizen [Yettaw] who was clearly guilty of breaking and entering was instead set free.

The junta has been trying desperately to have these sanctions lifted. In 2007, the general had suggested that Aung San might be released if she helped in getting the sanctions lifted and would pledge to give up opposing the junta.

Now she publicly and officially expressed her willingness to intervene to get rid of the sanctions, but the judge was ordered to turn down her appeal. In other words, the junta has shown that it fears neither sanctions nor Aung San.

The United States and the United Nations (the Office of the General Secretary General Assembly, Security Council) continue to demand Aung San’s release, but Russia and China continue to oppose their veto against sanctions.

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