Politicians defend Daw Suu for not meeting envoy

Aug 27, 2008 (DVB), The secretary of the Committee Representing the People's Parliament has defended Daw Aung San Suu Kyi for not meeting United Nations special envoy Ibrahim Gambari during his recent visit to Burma.

CRPP secretary U Aye Thar Aung said the National League for Democracy leader's stance was a protest at the lack of progress made by the UN in bringing the Burmese junta to the negotiating table.

"I think it is reasonable for Daw Suu not to agree to meet [Gambari] since the government has shown no will to take steps towards national reconciliation," U Aye Thar Aung said.

"We see the matter of Daw Suu refusing to meet Mr. Gambari as an indirect message to the UN and the SPDC of what she wanted to say."

The Burmese regime has presented Daw Aung San Suu Kyi's refusal to meet Gambari as evidence that she is not willing to engage in reconciliation efforts.

But U Aye Thar Aung said that stronger UN efforts were needed to bring about genuine dialogue.

"Gambari needs to push the SPDC for dialogue between the NLD, Daw Suu, ethnic groups and the SPDC based on his findings from his previous talks with them in order to make national reconciliation happen," U Aye Thar Aung said.

"He should make full use of his UN authority to make it happen," he went on.

"The problems Burma is facing now could be easily resolved if Daw Suu and Than Shwe could have a talk."

Veteran politician Thakin Chan Htun said he disagreed with the way the junta had set up the situation with Gambari's aides calling out to Daw Aung San Suu Kyi from outside her house.

"It was unethical for Mr Gambari to ask people who were with him to call out Daw Suu from in front of her house , it was nonsense," he said.

"They could have just asked for permission to go inside the gates, but instead they just made a scene there with the loudspeakers and took photos of it , it all looked like a set-up."

Reporting by Khin Hnin Htet

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