The international community should use global outrage about the trial of Aung San Suu Kyi to push for a UN inquiry over possible crimes against humanity in Burma, legal and rights experts said.

Suu Kyi trial ‘a chance’ for UN inquiry on Burma
June 3, 2009 (AFP)–The international community should use global outrage about the trial of Aung San Suu Kyi to push for a UN inquiry over possible crimes against humanity in Burma, legal and rights experts said.

The case against the democracy icon, who faces up to five years’ jail on charges of breaching her house arrest, has provided a “window of opportunity” to investigate Burma’s junta, said Tyler Giannini of Harvard Law School.
Giannini co-authored a report in May calling for the UN Security Council to follow the precedent of Rwanda and the former Yugoslavia, where inquiries led to special tribunals and prosecutions.
“The trial of Daw Aung San Suu Kyi is putting additional scrutiny on Burma right now and really highlighting the lack of judicial independence,” Giannini said at the Foreign Correspondents Club of Thailand late Tuesday.
He said that with political unity there was a “very good chance… that (UN) member states will consider it seriously and it has a chance to get on the agenda in the fairly near future because of this current scrutiny.” Continue reading “The international community should use global outrage about the trial of Aung San Suu Kyi to push for a UN inquiry over possible crimes against humanity in Burma, legal and rights experts said.”

Burmese Court to Hear Appeal from Aung San Suu Kyi

A Burmese court has agreed to hear an appeal by lawyers representing pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi about the numbers of witnesses they can call to testify on her behalf.

Attorney Nyan Win told VOA’s Burmese Service that the divisional court issued the ruling Wednesday, one day after the appeal of an earlier trial court decision to bar three defense witnesses was filed. Only one witness has been allowed to testify for Aung San Suu Kyi, while there have been 14 prosecution witnesses.

The appeal will be heard on Friday, when closing arguments in Aung San Suu Kyi’s had been scheduled. Those arguments have been postponed.

The Nobel Peace laureate is facing a five-year prison sentence if she is convicted of violating the terms of her house arrest.

The charges stem from an incident early last month, when she allowed American John Yettaw to stay at her lakeside house in the main city of Rangoon overnight after he swam there uninvited. Continue reading “Burmese Court to Hear Appeal from Aung San Suu Kyi”

NEWS ANALYSIS-After The Lady Is Jailed

Closing arguments and a verdict in the trial of Burmese democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi have been delayed again. But that won’t change the outcome.

Ignoring global outrage and international diplomatic pressure, the court in Insein Prison will find the Nobel Peace Prize laureate guilty of “harboring” an American tourist who allegedly swam across Inya Lake to her residence.She will be sentenced for up to five years behind the walls of one of the world’s most notorious jails.
Assuming that imprisonment in Insein would be unbearable for anyone, we are forced to contemplate how long a frail 63-year-old woman can survive in this hell-hole.

Brought up in relative comfort, she will be in the hands of ill-mannered and thuggish prison authorities. Her living conditions could be comfortable though degrading; but they could also be inhumane. Her diet and level of physical comfort will be drastically depreciated.

By treating her as any other political prisoner, the sadistic generals of Naypyidaw no doubt hope to break her spirit as well as her health. Continue reading “NEWS ANALYSIS-After The Lady Is Jailed”

Site of Collapsed Pagoda Sealed Off

Burmese authorities have banned the general public from entering the area of the collapsed Danok pagoda, local residents report.

People of Danok model village in Rangoon’s Dalla Township, where the pagoda is located, have also been warned not to talk about the accident. Local residents have been threatened with imprisonment if found talking to independent journalists.Burmese authorities have also banned reports in the media about the collapse of the ancient pagoda.
The 2,300 year-old pagoda, located in Danok model village in Rangoon’s Dalla township, collapsed last Saturday, killing at least 20 people and injuring about 150.

The wife of junta leader Than Shwe, members of their family and relatives of senior military officials had attended a ceremony at the pagoda on May 7, at which a sacred golden umbrella was hoisted to the top of the structure. The association of Than Shwe’s wife, Kyiang Kyiang, and members of their family with the pagoda gave rise to a flood of speculation about the mystical significance of the accident.

The pagoda was being repaired at the time, however. The work was being carried out by the Shwe Than Lwin Company, owned by Burmese tycoon Kyaw Win. Continue reading “Site of Collapsed Pagoda Sealed Off”

Divisional Court accepts appeal of Suu Kyi’s case

by Mizzima News
Wednesday, 03 June 2009 17:39

New Delhi (Mizzima) – The Rangoon Divisional Court on Wednesday accepted an appeal by Daw Aung San Suu Kyi’s lawyers to review the rejection of defense witnesses by the sitting court in Insein Prison.

One of Burmese opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi’s lawyers, Nyan Win, had gone to the Divisional Court to appeal the rejection of defense witnesses by the Northern District Court in Insein Prison.

“The Divisional Court has demanded the case from the Insein court for review. Lawyers from both sides will appear before the Divisional Court on June 5th at 3 p.m. (local time) for review of the case,” Nyan Win told Mizzima.

The Divisional Court gave the order on Wednesday for review of the case against Aung San Suu Kyi after her legal team submitted an appeal over the rejection of defense witnesses by the Northern District Court.

On May 27th, the special court in Insein prison rejected three of the four defense witnesses – Tin Oo, Win Tin and Khin Mo Mo – but did not provide any reasons for their decision. Nyan Win, a member of Aung San Suu Kyi’s legal team, after obtaining a copy of the order found that it made no mention of the terms for the rejection of the witnesses. Continue reading “Divisional Court accepts appeal of Suu Kyi’s case”