Suu Kyi meets UN envoy

Detained Burmese opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi met United Nations special envoy Ibrahim Gambari on Monday during his mission to try to coax her and the ruling military junta towards talks on political reform.

Officials from Suu Kyi’s National League for Democracy (NLD) said the meeting, that also included four senior party members, lasted more than an hour. It was not known what they discussed.

Hopes of success for Gambari are slim after six previous visits that yielded no results, although he has already done better than his last trip, when he was snubbed by Suu Kyi despite her being held incommunicado under house arrest since May 2003.

Analysts believe Suu Kyi’s refusal to see Gambari in August was to show displeasure at the UN’s apparent acceptance of planned 2010 elections as the basis for future political reform, rather than the 1990 elections she won.

Gambari has also frequently been denied access to ageing junta supremo Than Shwe, who is known to loathe Suu Kyi so much he once stormed out of a meeting with a foreign diplomat when the envoy mentioned her name.

Suu Kyi’s NLD won a landslide election victory in 1990 only to be denied power by the military, which has run the country since a 1962 coup. The NLD believes the 1990 results must be the basis for any future political settlement.

New elections are scheduled for 2010 under the final stages of a seven-step ”roadmap to democracy” drawn up by the generals. A new Constitution guaranteeing the army control of the country was passed in a heavily criticised referendum last year. – Reuters

We make it make sense

If this story helped you navigate your world, subscribe to the M&G today for just R30 for the first three months

Subscribers get access to all our best journalism, subscriber-only newsletters, events and a weekly cryptic crossword.”

Related stories


Already a subscriber? Sign in here


Latest stories

COP27: It’s Africa’s turn to take centre stage

The climate conference must show how the world will benefit if Africa achieves its green development goals – bypassing fossil fuel where possible and moving straight to renewables

Why the majority of South Africans don’t know about the...

A recent survey found that only 40% of South Africans know enough about Marikana massacre to be able to explain it to a friend

KwaZulu-Natal opposition parties test ANC-led coalitions

eThekwini metro and KwaDukuza municipality are likely to face similar challenges as the Msunduzi municipality

What’s behind terrorist attacks on churches in Nigeria

The recent rise in incidents involving Christians should also be seen in the context of a general upturn in violence against all civilians – irrespective of their religious affiliation in Nigeria

press releases

Loading latest Press Releases…