Free Daw Aung San Suu Kyi

On May 25th, the Burmese military regime extended the house arrest of Daw Aung San Suu Kyi by another year. Aung San Suu Kyi, now aged 61, has been under house arrest since May 2003 after the regime's militia attacked her convoy and killed up to 100 of her supporters.

On October 14, 1991, Daw Aung San Suu Kyi of Myanmar (formerly known as Burma) was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for her nonviolent struggle on behalf of democracy and human rights. Being under house arrest, she was unable to accept the award in person. Her sons accepted it on their mother’s behalf.

As a child, Suu Kyi conquered a fear of the dark by standing alone at night in her family’s rambling lakeside home. Now she has spent the best part of sixteen years confined to it. She battles her isolation with the same single-mindedness, sustained by her faith, Buddhism.

Amnesty International says in its latest annual report that the state of human rights in Burma has worsened. Buddhism is the majority religion in Burma and almost all the rulers claim to be Buddhists, but even Buddhists in Burma have no freedom. The country's current regime is ‘religionless’ and shows no no value to their own people. Buddhist monks have been jailed for protesting against the ruling military government. Security forces have also destroyed or looted Buddhist temples, churches and mosques of other ethnic communities.

The military rulers do not worry about killing Buddhist monks while they claim to adhere to Buddhism. The Burmese authorities have stepped up repressions across the country and there are 1185 political prisoners there. The EU and the USA have imposed sanctions on Burma.

On June 6, the Canadian Parliament reinforced their policy on this issue, "We are very proud to announce that our motion requesting the Burmese Government to release Aung San Suu Kyi from house arrest was passed with the unanimous consent of the House, " said Larry Bagnell, Chairman of Parliamentary Friends of Burma.

Under house arrest, Suu Kyi meditates and memorizes Buddhist sutras. Her speeches and essays include frequent references to Buddhist principles.

REM's Michael Stipe narrates this PSA for Aung San Suu Kyi, the world's only imprisoned Nobel Peace Prize recipient. Produced in association with MTV UK