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[theburmanetnews] BurmaNet Update:
Subject: [theburmanetnews] BurmaNet Update: August 27, 2000
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August 27, 2000, Update: Stand-off at Dala, Issue # 1606
*AFP: Aung San Suu Kyi to fight 'war of endurance' with junta
*NCGUB News Desk: News Update on Daw Suu
*Reuters: Myanmar's Suu Kyi sticks to roadside protest
*AFP: Aung San Suu Kyi: West's democracy poster-child, but thwarted
*Govt of Britain: Aung San Suu Kyi: Statement by Robin Cook
*SPDC: Govt provides assistance to Daw Suu Kyi and Assistants
*Maykha-L: DASSK update
AFP: Aung San Suu Kyi to fight 'war of endurance' with junta
YANGON, Aug 27 (AFP) - Aung San Suu Kyi will fight a "war of
endurance" to force Myanmar's military regime to allow her to travel
freely, her party vowed Sunday as a stand-off on the outskirts of
Yangon went into a fourth night.
The opposition leader and a dozen supporters were blocked Thursday
as they attempted to travel to a meeting of the party's youth wing in
defiance of the junta's ban on her leaving the capital.
Aung San Suu Kyi refused to obey the military's request to turn back
and has spent an uncomfortable four days camped out in her car in wet
and steamy monsoon conditions.
National League for Democracy (NLD) chairman Aung Shwe said the 55-
year-old Nobel peace laureate would remain on the isolated road in
Dallah township unless she was allowed to travel on or forced to
The party would maintain a vigil until the showdown with the junta
ended, he said.
"Our headquarters will be kept open daily until the war of endurance
ends one way or another."
Although she was released from house arrest in 1995, Aung San Suu
Kyi's movements are closely monitored by the military regime which
has been in control of Myanmar in various guises for nearly four
Her last attempt to test the restrictions was in August 1998, when
she spent 13 days in a tense stand-off on a bridge outside Yangon
until illness and dehydration forced her to return home.
NLD central committee member U Nyunt Wai said the latest
confrontation was aimed at pressuring the authorities to acknowledge
the right to freedom of movement in Myanmar.
"Daw Aung San Suu Kyi is ready to endure all sorts of discomfort for
as long as it takes," he told AFP.
"The purpose is ... to let everyone know, including the people of
Burma, the military authorities, as well as the world, that we have
the basic democratic right to travel freely in our own country."
The NLD Saturday accused the government of preventing deliveries of
food and water from reaching Aung San Suu Kyi and her entourage and
warned the regime it would be held responsible if they came to any
Apparently stung by the criticism, the junta issued a series of
statements insisting the group was being well cared for during
a "rest" in Dallah and that an ambulance and doctor were on standby.
It released photographs of the scene, which is off-limits to
journalists, showing party members bathing in a stream and receiving
An NLD spokesman said Sunday that the crisis had eased and the group
were all in good health.
"Food, water and medicine have reached them through the Dallah NLD
party channel," he told AFP.
The international community has expressed its outrage over the stand-
off, with the United States, European Union, Britain and France
demanding the junta lift the blockade immediately.
They also reminded Myanmar's generals that they would be held
accountable for the welfare of Aung San Suu Kyi and her supporters.
The government has argued that travel in the area is dangerous and
that the Aung San Suu Kyi and her supporters were stopped for their
"The government encourages Daw Suu Kyi to return home and continue
her political activities in a more secure environment in Yangon," it
said in a statement Sunday.
"However, she and her companions remain free to continue staying at
Dallah township and the government will also provide her with
necessary assistance to enable her to carry out her political
activities successfully there."
Witnesses at the scene said the group's two vehicles had been moved
off the main road and were parked about 200 yards (182 metres) along
a dirt track. A police truck blocked their path and the tyres had
been let down.
Local townspeople said they were unaware of the drama unfolding
"We don't even know what's going on ... we're too busy going about
our business trying to survive," one Dallah resident told AFP.
The authorities seem resigned to the situation and another endurance
test is likely to be in the offing, observers in Yangon say.
"She will be there for as long as she can, until she's forced to
turn back because she becomes ill. She won't give in easily," one
NCGUB News Desk: News Update on Daw Suu
August 26, 2000
Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, U Tin Oo (Vice Chairman of NLD), U Soe Myint
Rangoon Division NLD Organizing Committee), Dr. Aung Myo, and six NLD
two cars, arrived at Pansodan jetty on the morning of 24 August to
cross over to
Dala. There was a delay for about one hour before they could cross
over to the
other side of the river. The two cars, with four people guarding
them, were left
behind at Pansodan jetty.
A saloon car and a Hilux van received the party when they arrived on
the other side
and the group proceeded from Dala.
About one mile down the road and as they reached a gasoline station,
members of the
Police, the Fire Department, Red Cross, and the Union Solidarity and
Association blocked the road and surrounded the cars. The cars were
off the road and onto a dirt track. The vehicles, with their tires
about 200 yards from the road and a police truck was also stationed
prevent them from moving on.
The Army and Intelligence Units were seen directing the blockade from
scenes but were not taking part directly.
The car Daw Aung San Suu Kyi is in has no air conditioning but she
remained in her
car, shaded by members of her party who took turns to stand at the
window with an
umbrella. The gap between the vehicles was covered with a makeshift
vice-chairman U Tin Oo, who accompanied Aung San Suu Kyi on the
journey, was seen
walking around the vehicles but never moving far from the area.
Journalists representing the foreign media were barred from making
crossing to Dala and were turned away by military intelligence
stationed at the
NLD youths who went along were asked by the NLD leaders to buy food
for the group,
which is being kept isolated from the local people.
U Aung Shwe remained at NLD Headquarters, which has appealed for help
local people in Dala Township and sent a letter of complaint to the
saying, "We demand that the blockade be immediately removed and the
NLD leaders be
allowed to proceed to their desired destination.... If the health of
blocked be impaired by lack of food and water.... this is the entire
of those who have stopped them."
Reuters: Myanmar's Suu Kyi sticks to roadside protest
By Aung Hla Tun
YANGON, Aug 27 (Reuters) - Opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi spent
a fourth uncomfortable day in her car south of Yangon on Sunday in a
roadside test of wills with Myanmar's military rulers, who have asked
her to go home for her own safety.
The 55-year-old Nobel laureate and more than a dozen members of her
National League for Democracy (NLD) were halted by police on Thursday
as they headed south of the capital in two vehicles.
It was the first time Suu Kyi had tried to leave Yangon since
another roadside stand-off in 1998 that ended after 13 days when
deteriorating health and dehydration forced her to return home in an
Myanmar's government said Suu Kyi was being prevented from
travelling further for her own protection, due to ``recent threats of
violence by armed separatist terrorist groups.''
``Daw Suu Kyi and her personal chauffeur together with 14 travel
companions are still continuing their rest in Dala township today,''
the government said in a statement.
``Until safety conditions improve, Daw Suu Kyi is visiting Dala
township, a small but charming and scenic town about 10 minutes' boat
ride from Yangon jetty.''
Journalists who tried to go to the scene of the stand-off were
turned back by security authorities on the outskirts of Yangon.
The government insisted Suu Kyi was being provided with ample food
and water, contrary to reports from some NLD members who said she was
running short of supplies.
``Water and other amenities from nearby Chinese restaurants and mini-
marts have been made available from the government as well as other
private sources,'' it said.
To support its assertion that Suu Kyi was being properly looked
after and provided with food and water, the government released five
photographs of Suu Kyi's ``visit to Dala.''
One showed several men laden with plastic bags walking along a path
towards the parked cars, with the caption: ``Suu Kyi's travel
companions coming back from shopping at nearby food stores in time
MYANMAR HITS BACK AT CRITICS
Another picture showed the group's two vehicles -- a saloon car and
a pickup truck -- parked beside a dirt track. The caption pointed out
houses in the background, noting that ``bathroom services are
available there for free.''
Two photographs showed men washing at an outdoor water pump and
bathing in a river. The government said the pictures showed NLD
members taking ``an afternoon dip.''
Suu Kyi was not visible in any of the photographs.
The government repeated its call for her to return home to
``continue her political activities in a more secure environment ...
However, she and her companions remain free to continue staying at
Dala township,'' it said.
World anger at the treatment of Suu Kyi has mounted, with the United
States and European Union demanding that she be allowed to travel
freely in her own country.
The government said they had misunderstood the situation.
``Apparently there is some misunderstanding of the current situation
in Myanmar so we would like to clarify some basic points to those who
are criticising us irresponsibly,'' it said.
``Like any government in the world, the government of Myanmar has a
fundamental obligation and responsibility to protect its citizens
from acts of violence from terrorist organisations and unlawful armed
Diplomats in Yangon said they had not heard reports of armed
insurgent groups active in the area of the stand-off.
The government said it would take all necessary steps to safeguard
Suu Kyi, ``while also safeguarding her human rights, as much as
possible including the right to freedom of movement.''
The NLD won elections in May 1990 by a landslide but has never been
allowed to govern.
Suu Kyi was under house arrest for six years until 1995 and her
movements remain severely restricted. In 1998, she twice spent
several days in her car after being blocked by police when trying to
AFP: Aung San Suu Kyi: West's democracy poster-child, but thwarted at
BANGKOK, Aug 27 (AFP) - Twelve years after she returned home from
Europe, Nobel peace laureate Aung San Suu Kyi remains excluded from
power by Myanmar's junta but has emerged as an icon of democracy for
Her ambitions for power have been thwarted at every step by the
military rulers, with the junta's boot firmly quashing any movement
for substantive political change.
The National League for Democracy (NLD) leader saw aspirations for
democracy in heady 1988 demonstrations evaporate in a hail of gunfire
which left thousands of protestors dead.
The next decade has been one of ultimately fruitless struggle
against the military and analysts say the opposition's fortunes have
Aung San Suu Kyi now sits in her car on a lonely stretch of country
in a protest of which her
compatriots know little or nothing but which the international
community is watching intently.
The daughter of Myanmar independence hero Aung San -- revered by
opposition and junta alike and who was assassinated months before the
country won independence from Britain in 1948 -- has paid a high
price for her political life.
A victim of her own popularity, she was placed under house arrest in
1989 under the "Law Protecting the State from Destructionists" and
only granted limited freedom in 1995.
Her thunderous silence during those years of house arrest galvanized
global opposition to the junta, drawing denunciations from the United
Nations, governments and human rights groups world wide. The award of
a Nobel peace prize in 1991 only served to reinforce that opposition.
Aung San Suu Kyi was born June 19, 1945, in Yangon and educated
there until 1960 when her mother, Khin Kyi, was named ambassador to
India, and then at Delhi University. From 1964-67 she studied
philosophy, politics and economics at St. Hugh's College, Oxford
University, England, earning a bachelor's degree.
In 1972 she married British academic Michael Aris. Their first son,
Alexander, was born in 1973 and their second, Kim, in 1977. The junta
has seized on her marriage as evidence she is not committed to
Myanmar and frequently refers to her simply as Mrs Aris.
Aris died in March 1999 after a long struggle with cancer. The junta
denied Aris a visa in the last months of his illness. Aung San Suu
Kyi declined to leave the country to be by her husband's side, an
expression of solidarity with those strugging for democracy and her
fear that she may not be allowed back in.
She had returned to Rangoon in April 1988 to tend to her sick mother
and found the city awash in protests against the military, which had
seized power in 1962. The demonstrations quickly spread nationwide
and grew in intensity and she took on the role of intermediary in
what was to become a bloody confrontation.
In September 1988, she was named secretary-general and co-founder of
the National League for Democracy (NLD), an alliance of 105
opposition parties challenging the junta.
Beginning in October 1988 she crisscrossed Burma, delivering more
than 100 campaign speeches for the NLD ahead of national elections.
Aung San Suu Kyi mesmerized huge crowds with her beauty and speaking
ability, and because she was the daughter of Burma's founding father.
Despite being confined to her home, she led the NLD to a landslide
victory in 1990 polls. The junta has refused to accept the results.
She has held regular meetings of supporters at her compound and
continues to speak out against the junta.
But analysts say international attention has drifted from Myanmar
and has driven her to seek confrontations with the military.
In a rare and exclusive interview with AFP last year, she admitted
that intense pressure from Myanmar's military junta had exposed
internal rifts in the party.
The Nobel laureate said the government crackdown was a kind
of "test" which would ultimately strengthen her party.
Govt of Britain: Aung San Suu Kyi: Statement by Robin Cook
Foreign Secretary, Robin Cook, issued the following statement on 25
'I am disturbed by reports that Nobel Laureate Aung San Suu Kyi,
of the National League for Democracy (NLD) in Burma, has been
from travelling to a meeting outside Rangoon.
'We deplore this action taken by the Burmese regime against Aung San
Kyi and other NLD members. To restrict leaders of a democratic
party from moving around the country is a denial of fundamental human
and political rights. The NLD was elected in 1990 with a massive
majority and still enjoys huge popular support.
'We urge the authorities to lift these unnecessary and unlawful
restrictions immediately, and call on the regime to open an immediate
dialogue with Daw Aung San Suu Kyi and the NLD.'
SPDC: Govt provides assistance to Daw Suu Kyi and Assistants
MYANMAR INFORMATION COMMITTEE
N0. B-1499(I/L) 27th August, 2000
Government Officials And Dala Township NLD Members Continue To
Provide Assistance To Daw Su Kyi And Her Assistants While They
Continue To Rest In Dala Township
Daw Su Kyi and her personal chauffeur together with the 14 travel
companions are still continuing their rest in Dala township today
Regretably, recent threats of violence by armed separatist terrorist
groups have made travel by prominent persons beyond Dala township
inadvisable at this time. Until safety conditions improve, Daw Su Kyi
is visiting Dala Township, a small but charming and scenic town about
10 minutes boat ride from Yangon jetty and while they are continuing
their stay at Sapachaun Ward food, water and other amenities from
nearby Chinese restaurants and mini-marts have been made available
from the government as well as other private sources.
The Government encourages Daw Su Kyi to return home and continue her
political activities in a more secure environment in Yangon. However,
she and her companions remain free to continue staying at Dala
Township and the Government will also provide her with necessary
assistance to enable her to carry out her political activities
Apparently there is some misunderstanding of the current situation in
Myanmar so we would like to clarify some basic points to those who
are criticizing us irresponsibly. Like any government in the world,
the Government of Myanmar has a fundamental obligation and
responsibility to protect its citizens from acts of violence from
terrorist organizations and unlawful armed groups. The terrorist
attacks and kidnappings that are, in fact, happening today in the
region are indicating that terrorism is a very real threat in the
modern world and governments around the world must work together to
prevent such acts of violence.
As a prominent citizen of Myanmar and also being the daughter of
Myanmar National Hero General Aung San, the Government will take all
necessary action in protecting her from these threats, while also
safeguarding her human rights, as much as possible including the
right to freedom of movement.
Maykha-L: DASSK update
August 26, 2000
[BurmaNet adds: This rough translation of a Burmese language report
was posted on the Mayka-L mailing list on August 28. It is similar
to the report carried by the NCGUB news desk (see above) but adds
details not in that report or in wire service reports.]
Posted by M.M. Than [maungt@xxxxxxxxxx]
Dear friends , This is a draft - unofficial traslation of the DASSK
update from shwenanda@xxxxxxxxxxx . Please notice that I did not
have time to ask for authorisation to translate it into English
from the original sender . It is only from my wish to let Non-
Burmese friends understand what is written . I am responsible for any
mistake in translation.
mmt- 612 97378637
DASSK group crossed Rangoon river to the other side Dala township 10
am 24 August 2000 . They left two vehicle behind ( at the Rangoon
side Pansoedan wharf) . From Dala wharf , they continued to travel
with two vehicles toward Tontay township ( a Saloon white and a
After a mile over Dala township near Dala clock-tower and near the
Petrol station they were confronted by USDA , Fire -brigade , Red
Cross , Police , Military intelligence . Those guys holding wooden
sticks placed barbed-wire and barricade on the road to block DASSK
group from moving forward and they took the air out of the wheels-
DASSK and colleagues were forced into the small lane ( KyanSitthar
lane) two hundreds metres from the main road therefore DASSK , U
tin Oo, U Soe Myint , Dr Aung Myo and six youth were stuck and could
not move any further from the place ( time of this record 4 pm 26 .
August 2000) .
On 24 August , while the vehicles were being forced to move out of
the main road , the transportation routes between Dala township and
Tontay , Konchangone , Kawmhu township was totally cut off till 3 pm
in the afternoon.
The famous pagoda - Shwesandaw in Tontay township has been
restricted since 24 th August due to the report of DASSK plan to
visit the pagoda .
Military intelligence warned the people in the surrounding area not
to contact DASSK . People are afraid to offer food and water for
DASSK despite their willingness to support her .
Commuters on the buses ( along the road ) are warned by military
intelligence through bus conducters not to point at DASSK and
colleagues while passing through the place. And commuters are also
warned not to look out and not to talk about DASSK and colleagues .
They are in very sparsely populated area on the way in the middle
of paddy field , where known to have a lot of snakes , mosquitoes
a hundred meter away , there is a house under construction right in
middle of paddy field, it does not have door.
U Tin Oo and U Soe Myint are seen standing and walking around, in the
day time .
People are whispering why an unarmed lady is not allowed to visit
the pagoda .
Meanwhile on Rangoon wharf, there are police and intelligence under
various disguise around the vehicles that DASSK left behind.
Within one mile area surrounding DASSK group Fire -brigade , Red
Cross , Police , Military intelligence , township SPDC are seen to be
busy around DASSK and her colleagues.
Food supply is mainly organised by youth members accompanying
together with DASSK and local NLD members.
On the Dala-Tontay highway , there are an ambulance and an fire-
brigate vehicle stationed at 2 falon from the place . The vehicles
carrying intelligence are seen going to- and -fro .
A plastic tent is located between two vehicles of DASSK group (
supposed to be having a camp) .
stream stream / Bridge / Stream stream ------------------------- / /
Ten Miles to Tontay/
/ /Petrol station
-----------------------------/ / ---------------------------
Saloon car , Hilux car , small lane , small village in 3 falon away
Kyan Sit Thar Lane
Two storey building under construction
a group of 5-6 huts / /
/a mile from Dala /
Paddy fields , Hut / /
hut / /
hut / /
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