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Australia:warning on toucher policy
Subject: Australia:warning on toucher policy for Burma.
Australia: Warning on toucher policy for Burma
The Federal Government will consider toughening its policy
towards Burma if the country's military junta continues a crackdown on
supporters of the pro-democracy leader Ms Aung San Suu Kyi, government
sources said last night.
Amid growing fears that Ms Suu Kyi may be re-arrested ahead of a
conference of her party on Sunday, the Governor-General, Sir William
Deane, last night announced the Nobel Peace Prize winner had been
appointed as a Companion in the Order of Australia. The award is rarely
bestowed on non-Australians.
The Foreign Minister, Mr Downer, said it was "in recognition of
her outstanding leadership and great personal courage in the struggle
to bring democracy to Burma". He said Ms Suu Kyi was a "remarkable
woman and an international symbol of the Burmese people's desire for
Ms Suu Kyi last night warmly welcomed the government's decision
to make the award.
"It's a great honor and I deeply appreciate it," she told
journalists at her home in Rangoon.
Ms Suu Kyi rejected suggestions that the award might hinder her
effort to win a return to democracy in Burma.
"It is always a help to gain international recognition because it
is not a personal recognition but a recognition of the work we are
as movement of democracy."
She said she was determined to push ahead with plans for a
conference of party leaders on Sunday, despite the arrest of a almost
200 of her supporters.
"We are a party working for democracy and we've got to carry on
Burma's military rulers freed Ms Suu Kyi last July after six
years of house arrest.
[By LINDSAY MURDOCH, Canberra, and Mark Baker, Rangoon, 24 May 96].