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New generals can be heroes, says My

The Straits Times (17 November 1997)

BANGKOK -- Myanmar's democratic government-in-exile yesterday welcomed
the dissolution of Yangon's former ruling junta and declared that
newly-appointed generals had a chance to become "national heroes". 

The National Coalition Government of the Union of Burma (NCGUB) urged the
generals in the new regime to redeem themselves by delivering democracy
to the Myanmar people. 

"The generals must prove that the change is not in name only and show
genuine interest in resolving the nation's ills," said a statement. 

The State Law and Order Restoration Council (Slorc), formed in 1988
during a bloody nationwide crackdown against pro-democracy protesters,
was replaced on Saturday with a new junta, the State Peace and
Development Council (SPDC), led by top Slorc figures but including new

The statement urged the new regime to stand by its objectives to bring
"peaceful development" and "disciplined democracy", while saying that
this should not mean democracy "guided" by the military. The exiles
called for the SPDC to initiate a dialogue without preconditions with the
main opposition National League for Democracy, led by Nobel Peace Prize
winner Aung San Suu Kyi. -- AFP.