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Aung San Suu Kyi Sent to Insein Prison, Facing Trial (click to view PDF)

World’s Only Imprisoned Nobel Peace Prize Recipient Aung San Suu Kyi Sent to Insein Prison Three to Five Years Imprisonment Looming for Crime She Never Committed; Global Protest Is Called

U.S. Campaign for Burma- Press Release
May 14, 2009
Contact: Jennifer Quigley at 202-234-8022

(Washington, DC, May 14, 2009) The U.S. Campaign for Burma today strongly denounced the military junta that rules the Southeast Asian country of Burma for its unfair and unjust treatment of the world’s only imprisoned Nobel Peace Prize recipient, Aung San Suu Kyi. Today, Aung San Suu Kyi, along with two women companions, was transferred by police security forces to Burma’s notorious Insein Prison from her residence where she has been under house arrest since 2003. She and her companions were forced to appear before a judge at a special court held inside Insein Prison. A police prosecutor read the charges, which accuse her of breaching the terms of her house arrest. Last week, an American entered her house unlawfully without invitation after swimming across a lake to her property and refused to leave at once when she pleaded with him to do so. Later, the judge issued a remand to detain her and her live-in companions, Daw Khin Khin Win and Win Ma Ma, for 14 days. They were asked to appear before a court on May 18, 2009. Currently, Aung San Suu Kyi and her two companions are being detained in Insein Prison. If found guilty, Aung San Suu Kyi will be imprisoned for three to five years.

Aung San Suu Kyi’s current house arrest is due to expire in less than 14 days according to the State Protection Law, used by the regime to justify her detention.

She should be released on May 27, 2009, as the law allows the authorities to put her under house arrest for a maximum of six years. “This is the regime’s cunning scheme to extend her detention beyond six years”, says Aung Din, former political prisoner and a close friend of Aung San Suu Kyi, who is serving as the Executive Director of the U.S. Campaign for Burma.

“This is the very difficult time for the regime, as they are unable to move their election plan, scheduled for 2010. They have been unsuccessful at pressuring the ethnic ceasefire groups, which command over 40,000 fully-equipped troops, to reduce their numbers significantly and transfer them under the control of Burma’s army.

They are not able to convince these groups to participate in the election. If they have to release Aung San Suu Kyi at this time, their plan to legalize military rule in Burma will be jeopardized.” continues Aung Din.

Than Shwe, the paramount leader of the Burmese military regime is among the world’s most brutal military dictators. In addition to locking up over 2,100 political prisoners, he has overseen the destruction of 3,300 ethnic minority villages in eastern Burma which has forced over 1 million refugees to flee the country and an additional 1/2 million to hide inside Burma’s borders as internal displaced persons.

At the same time, the regime has recruited up to 70,000 child soldiers, more than any other country in the world, and carried out a campaign of rape and sexual violence against ethnic minority women.

"I believe that the situation is escalating towards a potential state of emergency in Burma. I call on the U.S. Government to denounce the regime with strongest terms, to maintain and extend current sanctions including the Clinton Investment Ban which is set to expire on May 16, 2009, and to exercise maximum diplomacy to organize nations around world to respond to the situation in Burma and to stop the regime from continuing to suppress the will of the Burmese people with collective and effective action immediately. The UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon also needs to be personally involved in securing the release of Aung San Suu Kyi and her co-accused as well as all political prisoners,” Aung Din demands.

The U.S. Campaign for Burma also calls on free Burma activists around the world to protest in front of Burmese embassies for the immediate and unconditional release of Aung San Suu Kyi and all political prisoners in Burma. 

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