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Govt: Must Speak Out Over Burma Crackdown

Locke Urges Govt. To Speak Out Over Burma Crackdown

Green MP Keith Locke wants the Government to speak out against the latest crackdown on pro-democracy opposition in Burma.

"New Zealand should join Britain and the United States in condemning the house arrest of Nobel Peace laureate Aung San Suu Kyi and other members of her party," said Mr Locke, who is the NZ Green Party's foreign affairs spokesperson.

"There are reports that police have raided offices of the National League for Democracy, Suu Kyi's party.

"If the world doesn't speak out now, the military rulers may be emboldened to conduct mass arrests of NLD members.

"The military is obviously desperate to silence Suu Kyi, who voices the aspirations of most Burmese for an end to dictatorship and a return to democracy.

"After a nine-day standoff, the junta forced Suu Kyi and her entourage to return to Rangoon and put her under de facto house arrest.

"New Zealand shouldn't be overly influenced by the silence of ASEAN nations on this ominous development in Burma.

"We have to be a voice for human rights in the Asia/Pacific," said Mr Locke.

Ends

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