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Jakarta Post

Presuming a democratic Myanmar: Looking beyond election 2010

  • Nehginpao Kipgen,

Rockville, MD   /   Thu, January 8 2009   /  10:36 am

It is sad to see a government sentencing its own citizens to prison terms ranging from six months to 65 years. The alleged convicts are none other than some of the most admired artists, revered monks and peaceful activists who dearly love their country. The international community's political rhetoric, without any substantive action, has emboldened the military generals to advance their seven-step road map toward a "disciplined and flourishing democracy" slowly but steadily. It was not surprising to see UN chief Ban Ki-moon's lukewarm reaction toward a largely symbolic petition submitted to him by 112 former world leaders asking him to visit Burma (Myanmar) in the wake of widespread arrests in recent weeks and months. The Dec. 3 petitioners included Jimmy Carter and Tony Blair, among others. Out of frustration, Ban -- through his spokesperson Michele Mont...