In her first public statement since the plight of the Burmese Rohingya turned into a mass exodus to Bangladesh after the incidents at the border last October, Aung San Suu Kyi gave an interview to the BBC denying “ethnic cleansing” and taking no position on the military campaign.
However, she maintained that her country is ready to welcome those who want to come back and said their safety will be guaranteed. ”Those who return will be welcome,” said the lady in yellow, this time sporting a stylish green dress (paradoxically the color of Islam). She spoke with BBC journalist Fergal Keane about the difficulties of the transition, the peace process and, after a few minutes, the Rohingya affair.
Suu Kyi denies all accusations of having been silent, claiming she instead took steps by asking Kofi Annan to take measures for a specific mission and that she has started with her government a citizenship verification audit. She is against the use of the term “ethnic cleansing” (Annan himself has refused to use it) and by refraining from condemning them, the Nobel Prize winner ends up justifying the actions of the military (accused of rape, violence, killings and burning of villages).