Suu Kyi’s convoy pelted with stone

A motorcade carrying Aung San Suu Kyi and party colleagues along a highway south of Burma’s capital was hit with stones on Tuesday evening, injuring two bodyguards.

The convoy of vehicles was heading to Rangoon after the opposition leader had canvassed for votes in Naypyidaw for her National League for Democracy (NLD) party, which is competing in the 1 April by-elections.

The back window of a car following Suu Kyi’s was smashed, Soe Win, an NLD official who was included in the motorcade, told DVB. The Nobel laureate was unharmed.

“We kept on driving until we arrived at Hpayagyi [in Pegu division] and then we checked on it. It was a pebble. We don’t know for sure if it was fired from a slingshot or just hurled,” he said. “The smashed window was on the back passenger seat’s right side.”

The NLD says it will alert police to the incident.

Her party has endured apparent foul play in the run-up to the by-elections, in which she is expected to win a seat in Burma’s parliament. On several occasions she has been blocked from addressing crowds, while twice authorities in separate towns demanded students sit exams with little notice on the same days that Suu Kyi was due to visit to rally support.

And just last week, the government-backed Union Election Commission rejected an attempt by a candidate competing against Suu Kyi in the Kawhmu constituency to have her banned. Tin Yi, from the newly-formed Unity and Peace Party, complained that she could not join parliament because she had received international funding and had contravened an election law banning subjects of foreign countries from becoming MPs.

The incident on Monday evening is a reminder of the threats the 66-year-old, who has long championed non-violence, has faced, particularly an incident in 2003 when 70 of her supporters were killed by regime-backed thugs in the town of Depayin near Mandalay.

Suu Kyi offered a veiled warning to the government during a speech in Taungoo in Pegu division on Tuesday. “I would like to say very openly that if some [parties] are allowed to compete in the election while others are not, then no one will support us,” she said, according to The Irrawaddy Magazine.

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