Kachin Silence to Avoid Worsening Crisis: Suu Kyi

National League for Democracy chairwoman Aung San Suu Kyi speaks at Queens College in New York on Sunday. (Photo: Reuters)

Burmese opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi said that she will always condemn human rights abuses and acts outside the rule of law but would not criticize any side in the ongoing Kachin State conflict in order not to exacerbate the fighting.

Speaking to members of the Burmese community at Queen College in New York on Sunday, Suu Kyi said, “There are people who criticized me when I remained silence on this case. They can do so as they are not satisfied with me. But, for me, I do not want to add fire to any side of the conflict.”

The Nobel Laureate told hundreds of Burmese diaspora in the United States that to solve one conflict means being calm and considering the roots of the problem, instead of pointing fingers and blaming each other.

“There are times when you have power, but there are also times when you do not have power,” said Suu Kyi. “When you think that you have the power to dominate other people, this is not a solution that can last for a long time.”

Observers have urged Suu Kyi to participate in the Peacemaking Working Committee to solve the Kachin conflict as they believe neutral figures must mediate between the government and rebels to build trust and find a solution.

Suu Kyi chairs the Lower House of Parliament’s Rule of Law Committee but has not had a chance to participate in solving the Kachin conflict. Some critics have condemned the 67-year-old for staying silent on Kachin as well as the sectarian violence between Arakanese Buddhists and Rohingya Muslims in western Burma.

When one audience member submitted a question regarding the Kachin conflict, Suu Kyi replied that her National League for Democracy party is not in power. The government is running the peace process and so it is not for her party to score political points, but if people see bad things happening then they must speak out, she said.

“We should remove such fear and hate in order that all of us can live with unity,” said Suu Kyi, referring to the climate of fear which characterized the previous half-century of military dictatorship. “Burma is a union where there are different ethnic people and all the different minorities make the country stronger,” she added.

Meanwhile, the BBC (Burmese Version) reported on Sunday that serious abuses are ongoing in Kachin State where fighting between government troops and the ethnic rebel Kachin Independence Army continues unabated during Suu Kyi’s visit to the US.

Ma Hka, a Kachin lawyer representing the families of four alleged torture victims, told the BBC that he sent letters to President Thein Sein, Northern Regional Command and also the UN Human Rights Commission on Sept. 20 to demand a thorough investigation of serious sexual and physical abuse committed to his clients under interrogation.

“The victims were burned by candles if they refused to perform homosexual acts and this is the main issue that we want the authorities to take action about,” he told the BBC.

Two victims from Myitkyina and two from Thar Law Gyi Village in Waingmaw Township were captured by government troops from Light Infantry Battalion 37 based nearby. Military Intelligence officers are accused of torturing the villagers who were suspected of being Kachin rebels.

The four were detained in June around the one-year anniversary of resumed hostilities after a 17-year ceasefire broke down in 2011. Humanitarian groups report that around 90,000 civilians have so far been displaced by the fighting in northernmost Burma.

21 Responses to Kachin Silence to Avoid Worsening Crisis: Suu Kyi

  1. Are you a deaf or illiterate, Ms. Suu Kyi? There are mountain of Human Rights abuse evidences out there both from the reports of the locals and the international communities(if you don’t trust the locals) but you are still wondering who’s the wrongdoer in this war?

  2. “If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor.” – Desmond Tutu, your nobel laureate

    • She has definitely chosen the side of the oppressor. Being vocal to gross human rights violation of the Kachins would be detrimental to her political ambitions & she may not be as popular among the Bamars

  3. The Burmese Freedom Fighter

    The law of trust depends on
    reliability in two ways engagement that comes with its own ruler of trust risk.
    Burma is in its stage of understanding and trust building with the good will of
    building a new democratic nation.The trust between the
    democracy leader Daw Aung San Suu Kyi and her ex-jailer, the Burmese military is
    on its stage of trial with enormous efforts from both sides, the basic of moving
    Burma forward, and the first step in establishing a chance to work hand in hand
    for common goal of democratic country.


    What Daw Aung San Suu Kyi has
    been doing is giving the Burmese army a chance to follow up with the trust she
    has given to them by joining in the by election and avoid commenting on certain
    delicate issues.


    The trust building is in its
    high stage in current Burma political reform that could not afford any kinds of
    confrontation, because Burma has just started building the foundation of all
    healthy relationships that still have to be worked out for awhile. The
    lack of the trust among the politicians in Burma has driven Burma into to a failed
    state. All of us should be aware of this given situations and help to build the
    trust until it gets strong foundation.


     I have no doubt that what Daw Aung San Suu Kyi
    has been seeding in Burma is the path to earn the trust of her ex-jailers after
    having 3 decades of dead-lock only to find out poverty, civil-war and a
    failed-state. She’s just caught the chance of building trust and expends to its
    full length to create a new democratic nation for all of us.  

    The Burmese Freedom Fighter

  4. Although she made a wise speech, what has come to my attention is that she shouldn’t make a dialogue “I do not want to add fire to any side of the conflict.” Consider that leader is the one who is decisive, can make a decision and responsible for the consequences.
    With all due respect, this is indicating to irresponsible, indecisive image of leadership though she clued a solution for the conflict. Personally, i somewhat envy her because i don’t her very well and praise her for all the sacrifices and efforts she made.

  5. This calls to mind the words of Daw Aung San Suu Kyi’s fellow Nobel Laureate Bishop Desmond Tutu: If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor.

  6. This calls to mind the words of Daw Aung Suu Kyi’s fellow Nobel Laureate Bishop Desmond Tutu: If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor.

  7. So what will DASSK do, then? Just issue more cod philosophical musings on morality and power? Great, just what the people need.

  8. For the last twenty years, the ethnic groups of the Union of Burma stood by with Aung San Suu Kyi. Today, she is free and she no longer stands for the truth. Silence means accepting. Aung San Suu Kyi is silent on the attack from Myanmar soldiers on the Kachin people, not only to the KIA. It means she agrees with this assault. This is the Myanmar’s way of life anyway. She is a friend of Thein Sein and Min Aung Hlaing, not ethnic groups anymore. 

  9. Every problems in Burma to ask the lady to solve is not fair, what is the Government duty to do it? Let them find the way and people who caused the problem together to solve it.

  10. It is not the matter of siding with any one…it is about gross human rights violation that government is committing….DASSK should and deemed to speak on the side of tens of thousands of IDPs not only in Kachin State but also for the whole country. It is reality that tens of thousands of IDPs are suffering…she should not just think about siding with Kachins or Burmese…it is all about humanitarian…it is about democracy..it is about country’s peace and reconciliation….so what….????/

  11. No need to side with Kachins or Burmese….but be sided with tens of thousands of IDPs in the country….

  12. Finally, She reveal herself… Like father.. Like Daughter….
    The reason she keep saying “Burma” is that She is only stand for “Bama”… No for the whole Myanmar… How come she can say like this…. O.M.G.  You are right.. You changed when you got Power+Authority…
    And you might be right… we have to speak up for ourself in some cases… but If we have to speak up for ourselfe alone, WE, MYANMAR PEROPLE DON’T NEED ANYMOE LIKE YOU, AN REPRESENTATIVE FOR YOURSELF…. We don’t need politicain.. , no need parlement…, no need goverment, no need to pay Tax… …. we don’t need any one, we need ourself….
    GOOD LESSON…………….

  13. Lame! Lame! Lame!

    Some one totally out of touch with reality.  ” Suu in Fairy Land” with gulping admirers.  

    Real world and real Burma must go on not notwithstanding  selling-out Thein Sein and his loyal sidekick.

  14. Democratic country without opposition party is Myanmar. When everyone bows his/her head to one government, it is called dictatorship. Suu Kyi was elected in 1990 but she was put under house arrest. We were 100% supporting her until she was released. Now, she is offered a position by the dictator(s) and she enjoys it very much. Now, she is dancing according to dictators’ tone and forgets the people’s voice. She becomes a deaf woman now to the helpless ethnics.

  15. Suu Kyi’s TRUE COLOURS now are exposed. A pathetic response from a washed out pretender.

  16. Sadu! Sadu! Sadu! 
    Amen! Amen! Amen!

  17. We all understand that she is the leader of Burma (Burmese), not of Kachin or any other Minorities Ethnic Group since she is a BB ( Buddist Burmese). She is pathetic for Burmese when muslim raped and killed A Buddist woman. So she doesn’t wanna talked about when Burmese got revernge over Muslim. On the other hand, when Kachin are raped and kill by the Bumese (Soilder), she keep silence too. So what’s the Point????
    The answer is she just care for Burmese people.

  18. The way they are (Government and DASSK) doing is to be one Nation, one people (Burmese), one religion (Buddist) as Japanese taught to the Gen. Aung San. She has the same mind set, the same idea which seeded by her father. So she will just speak for or represent the whole country means only Burmese, but not for specific minorities group.
    Take a look at what just happened in the country, she is so pathetic about how the buddist woman raped and killed by muslim. When the burmese got revernge over them, she said she don’t wanna talk about it. On the other hand, when Kachin are Raped and Killed by Burmese Soilders, she is still like I don’t wanna talk about it.

    Let’s say what if Kachin or any other Minorities started the rampages over Burmese people!!!!!
    She will start screaming….

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