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Burma lashes out at Thailand over Suu Kyi
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    Burma lashes out at Thailand over Suu Kyi

    Burma lashes out at Thailand over Suu Kyi
    Bangkok Post

    Burma lashed out at Thailand on Sunday for interfering in its internal affairs after the government called for the release of Aung San Suu Kyi.


    Back to exile? Suu Kyi under house arrest.

    Burma said the statement last "Back to exile? Suu Kyi under house arrest.eek by the Foreign Miinstry" "deviated from the practice of Asean," under which countries supposedly must not criticise other members.

    "It is tantamount to interfering in Myanmar's internal affairs," said the Burmese statement, printed by the mouthpiece media. Independent reporting is banned in Burma.

    The government appealed to the Burmese junta to release Mrs Suu Kyi, because the show trial at Insein prison in Rangoon threatens that country's "honour and credibility''.

    It urged "humane treatment" for Mrs Suu Kyi and reminded the junta that it had ignored the group's previous calls for her release from detention. It said, however, that Thailand held fast to its policy of engagement with the military government.

    Foreign Minister Nyan Win said last week Suu Kyi's trial "will proceed fairly according to the law." Diplomats who were given a brief glimpse of the trial inside Insein prison said it appeared scripted.

    The trial resumes on Monday. "I have no guilt as I didn't commit any crime," she told the court.

    Mrs Suu Kyi formally pleaded innocent on Friday, and was locked in her cell over the weekend.

    Suu Kyi's lawyers will submit a list of defence witnesses on Monday, and they expected the trial to run for two more weeks.
    She is charged with harbouring an American intruder, John Yettaw, who swam to her house on the banks of Inya Lake last month and stayed overnight. If Mrs Suu Kyi is found guilty, the junta will conveniently keep her locked up. Her term of house arrest is running out.

    She has spent more than 13 of the past 19 years in detention, most of those years at her home under police guard, with her phone line cut and visitors restricted. (Agencies)

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    Re: Burma lashes out at Thailand over Suu Kyi

    Thailand rejects Burma attack
    By: THANIDA TANSUBHAPOL and AGENCIES
    Bangkok Post

    Thailand has denied interfering in Burma's affairs with its demand as the chair of Asean for the junta to release opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi.

    Mrs Suu Kyi has entered a plea of not guilty to charges of violating her house arrest rules.

    Foreign Minister Kasit Piromya said the statement issued by Thailand on May 18 reflected the concern of Asean members on the situation in Burma.

    He said the statement was approved by top foreign ministry officials of the grouping.

    "It did not interfere in Burma's internal affairs," Mr Kasit said in Hanoi, where he was attending the Asia-Europe Meeting (Asem). "Like the situation in Thailand, many countries expressed concern over the street protests as well as the conflict in the South because it affected stability in the region and progress in Asean.

    "Thailand did not want to see any obstacles on the move towards the reconciliation process in Burma."

    He said the release of Mrs Suu Kyi and all political prisoners in Burma was an important step for reconciliation and general elections next year.

    Asean secretary-general Surin Pitsuwan said some Asean countries were fretting about the situation in Burma.

    The Thai move received support from the European Union. The EU praised the Thai statement on Burma, Czech Foreign Minister and EU senior official Jan Kohout said in Hanoi on the sidelines of the Asem meeting.

    Burma's anger was reflected in the New Light of Myanmar newspaper on Sunday, which said its government strongly rejected the statement by Asean condemning the trial of the prodemocracy leader.

    "The statement issued by the alternate Asean chair - which is not in conformity with Asean practice, incorrect in facts, and interfering in the internal affairs of Myanmar - is strongly rejected by Myanmar," it said.

    Burma's state-run newspaper also said: "It is sadly noted that the alternate Asean chair failed to preserve the dignity of Asean, the dignity of Myanmar and the dignity of Thailand."

    The Burmese issue is tabled in talks among Asian and European foreign ministers being held in Hanoi.

    It is expected to be raised again this week in Phnom Penh where Southeast Asian foreign ministers will meet their European counterparts in the AseanEU dialogue.

    The EU called at the Hanoi Asem for the "immediate release" of the 1991 Nobel Peace Prize winner.

    The message was conveyed to Burmese Foreign Minister Nyan Win on the sidelines of the meeting, Mr Kohout said.

    "I don't have a positive feeling" about the release of Mrs Suu Kyi, he said.

    The issue was discussed between Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva and Benita Ferrero-Waldner, the external relations commissioner of the European Commission, at Government House yesterday.

    Mrs Suu Kyi, who was taken from her house to Insein Prison, faces up to five years in jail if convicted of breaching the terms of her house arrest after an eccentric American, John Yettaw, swam to her lakeside house.

    Her six-year house arrest is due to end tomorrow.

    The pro-democracy leader will testify today, as the prosecution's withdrawal of its nine remaining witnesses suggested the military government wanted to quickly wrap up the proceedings.

    One of Mrs Suu Kyi's lawyers, yesterday said her defence team was unhappy that it was not given sufficient time to consult with their client about her planned testimony.

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