INTERNATIONAL

Suu Kyi release likely in 6 months, hints Myanmar

Supporters of pro-democracy party leader Aung San Suu Kyi mark Martyr’s Day in Yangon on Saturday. Martyr’s Day commemorates the assassination of Ms. Suu Kyi’s father, General Aung San and eight other leaders on July 19, 1942.

Supporters of pro-democracy party leader Aung San Suu Kyi mark Martyr’s Day in Yangon on Saturday. Martyr’s Day commemorates the assassination of Ms. Suu Kyi’s father, General Aung San and eight other leaders on July 19, 1942.   | Photo Credit: — Photo: AFP

P. S. Suryanarayana

Detention limit is nearing, says Minister

SINGAPORE: Aung San Suu Kyi, Nobel Peace Laureate and Myanmar’s celebrated democracy campaigner, may be released from house arrest in Yangon in about six months from now.

This was hinted at by Myanmar’s Foreign Minister U Nyan Win in his interaction with his counterparts in the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) in Singapore on Sunday. They met informally over dinner on the eve of a series of ASEAN-organised meetings that begin on Monday.

Briefing journalists, Singapore Foreign Minister George Yeo, who will host these meetings, said: “He [Mr. Nyan Win] explained that, under their law, the maximum period of detention for [Ms.] Suu Kyi is one year as approved by the Home Minister and five more years as approved by the Prime Minister as Cabinet decision — meaning a maximum of six years. And, he told us that the six-year limit will come up in about half a year’s time.”

Asked whether this implied a possibility that Ms. Suu Kyi would be set free in six months from now, Mr. Yeo said: “I am just repeating to you what he told me. And, I think, that is not an inaccurate inference.”

The ASEAN Ministers, discussing the military standoff between Thailand and Cambodia across their disputed border, urged them to “exercise utmost restraint and to resolve this issue amicably in the spirit of ASEAN solidarity and good neighbourliness.” The two sides said they would “exert their utmost efforts to find a peaceful solution” to their differences on the status of an ancient temple, a newly-designated World Heritage Site, that lies in the disputed area.

Cambodia had informed the United Nations Security Council of its position because this matter had hit international headlines, Mr. Yeo added.

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