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Suu Kyi award.

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Tue, 21st July 2009


The Hon Julie Bishop MP

Shadow Minister for Foreign Affairs

Deputy Leader of the Opposition

The Coalition congratulates Ms Aung San Suu Kyi for her award on Monday of the Mahatma Gandhi International

Award for Peace and Reconciliation.

“I pay tribute to Suu Kyi for her continuing struggle for freedom and democracy for the people of Burma, as

recognised by this latest award, and I repeat the Coalition’s call for her to be released immediately from prison

and from house arrest,” Shadow Minister for Foreign Affairs Julie Bishop said.

“The Rudd Government must work with the international community to condemn the political imprisonment of Suu

Kyi and to bring all possible pressure to bear on the regime to release her.”

Ms Bishop noted the 15 July 2009 statement from Burma's representative to the United Nations that Burma will

grant amnesty to some political prisoners to enable them to participate in the 2010 general elections.

“However, Suu Kyi must be released and allowed to campaign freely during the upcoming elections, if those

elections are to have any credibility whatsoever,” she said.

“Given the past behaviour of Burma’s brutal military junta, I remain deeply sceptical about this statement until

prisoners, including Suu Kyi, are released.

“It is particularly concerning to see recent reports that Burmese authorities detained dozens of opposition party

members on 19 July 2009 as they returned from ceremonies marking the 62nd anniversary of the death of the

Suu Kyi’s father, General Aung San.”