Belfast Telegraph

Wednesday 23 July 2014

Suu Kyi call for 'peaceful talks'

Aung San Suu Kyi delivers a speech to supporters at the headquarters of her National League for Democracy Party on Sunday (AP)

Pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi has thanked her supporters across the world and called for peaceful dialogue with the country's military junta.

Ms Suu Kyi said she wanted to "remove the sources of disagreement" with the generals and sit down with them across the table, adding: "There are so many things that we have to talk about."

The 65-year-old said she considered herself a "worker for democracy", a description she said was how she saw her future role.

In a interview with the BBC, Ms Suu Kyi said there had been no conditions placed on her release yesterday from house arrest but she recognised the possibility she could again be arrested.

The veteran human rights campaigner, who has been detained for 15 of the last 21 years, appeared reluctant to criticise the generals who rule the country with an iron grip, but said there may come a time in the future when she has to.

She said she had been "better off" under house arrest than the thousands of pro-democracy campaigners who have been imprisoned by the isolated regime.

Ms Suu Kyi said: "I just think of myself as one of the workers for democracy, well better known perhaps than the others here in Burma, but one of those working for democracy, that is my role, it has always been my role and I think it will continue to be my role."

Asked what she meant by calling for reconciliation with the regime she said: "I think we have to sort out our differences across the table, talking to each other, agreeing to disagree or finding out why we disagree and trying to remove the sources of our disagreement if we possibly can.

She said there were "many many questions" about the fairness of the recent elections, which her National League for Democracy (NLD) boycotted. The NLD was looking into allegations of vote-rigging and would publish a report.

But invited to criticise the generals, she stressed: "I don't criticise people just for the sake of criticising them, if there are things to criticise I do criticise. A lot of things I think need to be said about the generals I have already said."

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