Yesterday morning, the Burmese ruling junta moved Nobel Peace Prize winner Aung San Suu Kyi from her Rangoon home, where she is serving house arrest, to Burma’s notorious Insein Prison, where she will face trial on Monday, May 18th, for allegedly violating the terms of her house arrest, by hosting an unauthorized visitor after an American man swam uninvited to her compound and refused to leave.
Suu Kyi has been under house arrest for the past 19 years, following her legal election in 1990. The baseless offense she is being charged with can carry a five-year prison sentence, which would make her ineligible to run in the country’s elections scheduled to take place next year.
Her five-year house arrest detention order was set to expire at the end of May 2009, after authorities imposed a one year extension in 2008. Aung San Suu Kyi’s health has deteriorated in the past two years. Last week, members of her party said she suffered acute dehydration and low blood pressure.
In response to the impending trial, Human Rights Watch called on the UN secretary-general, members of the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN), China, and India in particular to press the authorities for Suu Kyi’s immediate, unconditional release.
The US Campaign for Burma is also calling on activists around the world to protest in front of Burmese embassies for the immediate and unconditional release of Suu Kyi and all political prisoners in Burma.
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