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Burma's Military Slams Opposition Leader - 2003-07-06


Burma's official press has again published a commentary lashing out at detained opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi.

On Saturday, a commentary purportedly written by a disenchanted member of the opposition National League for Democracy called the party chief "a willful and hard-headed person liable to rash judgments, followed by blind action."

In a second article today (Sunday), Aung San Suu Kyi was described as autocratic, vain and inflexible, and bent on causing trouble during recent political tours around the country.

"Auntie Suu," as the unidentified writer called her, was oblivious when shown infrastructure projects such as dams and power plants. She was said to be inflexible in her dealings with the military government.

The commentary also accused the NLD of spreading lies and instigating problems.

Burma's military rulers have detained Aung San Suu Kyi since May 30th, when pro-government groups attacked her motorcade in northern Burma.

The government says four people died in the clash, but witnesses put the toll far higher. They say up to 70 people died when a drunken mob of three-thousand people attacked the opposition leader's convoy with iron rods, bats and bamboo sticks.

The witnesses told a Thai Senate panel (in Bangkok) Friday that Aung San Suu Kyi escaped injury only because her car sped away.

Aung San Suu Kyi's detention has sparked an international outcry, and prompted some countries to threaten tough economic sanctions against the already impoverished nation.

Japanese Foreign Minister Yoriko Kawaguchi said her government will suspend new economic aid to Rangoon until it frees the opposition leader. She made the comments during a meeting in Tokyo Friday with Burma's deputy foreign minister Khin Maung Win.

Information for this report is provided by AP.

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