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Suu Kyi sees ASEAN role in restoring democracy — Loren

Originally appeared in Manila Bulletin Publishing Corporation (MB)

January 10, 2011

Aung San Suu Kyi believes that the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) would play a vital role in restoring democratic institutions in her country, according to Sen. Loren Legarda.

After a meeting with the pro-democracy icon in Yangon, Myanmar, Legarda called on the Philippine government to continue playing an active role in moving for the restoration of democratic institutions in the country still ruled by a military junta.

The role of ASEAN on the political life of Myanmar should be patterned after that of African nations which played a significant part in resolving political disputes in Ivory Coast, Legarda said.

“The release of Aung San Suu Kyi last November sent us a signal that the restoration of democratic rule in Myanmar could be on the way. We hailed her release, a hard-fought freedom that translates to a victory for democracy. Now, as member of the ASEAN, we must continue to call on Myanmar authorities to take concrete steps towards a fair political system that would allow the involvement of all its citizens in the country’s political affairs,” Legarda said.

Legarda quoted Aung San Suu Kyi as saying that she would only take part in Myanmar’s elections under an “inclusive political process,” in which all citizens of Myanmar (Burma) could freely participate.

“We all need to do our part in helping nations, especially our neighbors in Asia, become practicing democracies — the kind that works better for development. Aung San Suu Kyi has thanked President Aquino for calling her after she was released from house arrest, and she continues to be grateful to us for our consistency and vigilance in expressing our views and concerns relative to the restoration of democracy in Myanmar,’’ Legarda said.

View the original article here.

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