Burma's Aung San Suu Kyi 'guilty'

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  • Risto the Great
    Senior Member
    • Sep 2008
    • 15660

    Burma's Aung San Suu Kyi 'guilty'

    BBC, News, BBC News, news online, world, uk, international, foreign, british, online, service

    Burmese pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi has been sentenced to an additional 18 months' house arrest by a court in Rangoon.

    Ms Suu Kyi, a Nobel peace laureate, was convicted of violating state security laws by allowing a US national into her lakeside home after he swam there.

    UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown said the verdict was designed to prevent her from taking part in elections in 2010.

    Ms Suu Kyi has spent nearly 14 of the past 20 years in detention.

    In a strongly worded statement, Mr Brown he was "saddened and angry" by the verdict and described the trial as a "sham".

    He said it was "a purely political sentence".

    American John Yettaw, who was also on trial, was jailed for seven years, four with hard labour.

    Ms Suu Kyi, 64, was taken straight back to her home following the end of the trial, officials said.

    The opposition leader had denied the charge but said she expected to be convicted.

    Journalists had unexpectedly been allowed to enter the court in Rangoon's Insein prison shortly before the sentence was announced.

    Special order

    The courtroom was initially told that Ms Suu Kyi was sentenced to three years in prison with hard labour.

    But after a five-minute recess, Burma's home minister entered the courtroom and read out a special order from the country's military ruler Than Shwe that commuted the sentence to 18 months and said it could be served under house arrest.

    There was tight security around the prison, with security forces sealing off the area.

    The trial has brought international condemnation, with critics accusing Burma's military government of trying to keep Ms Suu Kyi out of next year's multi-party elections.

    Her National League for Democracy won the last elections in 1990 but was never allowed to take power.

    Mr Yettaw, 54, swam to Ms Suu Kyi's lakeside house in Rangoon uninvited and stayed there for two nights in May. As a result, Ms Suu Kyi was accused of breaching the terms of her house arrest.

    Mr Yettaw is believed to have epilepsy, diabetes and post-traumatic stress disorder and has been treated at a Rangoon hospital.

    Reports say he was discharged from hospital on Monday night after a week of treatment for epileptic seizures.
    Is there any justice in the world?
    Risto the Great
    "Holding my breath for the revolution."

    Hey, I wrote a bestseller. Check it out: www.ren-shen.com