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Burma Denies It Harassed Democracy Party Members - 2003-05-27


Burma's military government is denying claims that its supporters harassed and threatened Aung San Suu Kyi's entourage during the pro-democracy leader's northern tour this month.

In a statement Tuesday, Rangoon acknowledged that pro-government supporters clashed with National League for Democracy (NLD) members Sunday. The government did not directly accuse NLD members of starting fights with opponents, but it said the party should realize that not everyone supports its position.

The statement coincided with the 13th anniversary of the NLD's decisive victory in parliamentary elections that Burma's military rulers do not recognize. Aung San Suu Kyi observed the occasion by saying the military government is showing disrespect to the Burmese people with its refusal to honor the election results.

The NLD says its members have been bullied repeatedly by members of the pro-government Union Solidarity Development Association. In the latest violence, association members reportedly threw rocks and threatened to run over pro-democracy supporters with their cars.

Information for this report is provided by AP and AFP.

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