Today the Nobel Laureate Aung San Suu Kyi is turning 65. She is still under house arrest and has spent almost 15 of the last 20 years in this condition in Myanmar. In 1990, when she was elected Prime Minister as the leader of the National League for Democracy party, she could not take office since she had already been detained under house arrest before the elections.
Last Friday British Foreign Office Ministers Friday called for her immediate and unconditional release and this week the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention pronounced her detention as a flagrant violation of international law.
Responding to the view of UN experts, Foreign Secretary William Hague said that “her continued detention, and that of more than 2,100 other political prisoners in Burma, contravenes international human rights law and casts a long shadow over planned elections in the country”.
Burma general elections will be held in Autumn. The National League for Democracy, for which Aung San Suu Kyi still serves as the General Secretary, has overwhelmingly won the previous 1990 elections but was never allowed to take power. On 6 May 2010 the party was declared illegal and disbanded by the ruling military junta after failing to register for the elections of November 2010.