Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Burma claims will release Aung San Suu Kyi

Diplomat says jailed opposition leader will be allowed to organize her party for elections next year.

Burma's opposition leader, Aung San Suu Kyi, may soon be released so she can play a role in next year's election, a senior Burmese diplomat has said.

"There is a plan to release her soon...so she can organize her party," Min Lwin, a director-general in the foreign ministry, told the Associated Press. He gave no details and it was unclear whether Aung San Suu Kyi would be allowed to campaign or stand for election.

Despite the conciliatory remarks, the country's constitution includes provisions that bar her from holding office and ensure the primacy of the government in the military.

The Nobel peace prize winner has spent 14 of the last 20 years under house arrest. In August a court sentenced her to an additional 18 months after an American, John Yettaw, swam across a lake to her villa in Rangoon and stayed overnight. More>>

Aung San Suu Kyi and the US envoy Kurt Campbell after their meeting in Rangoon (Hla Hla Htay/AFP/Getty Images).