Myanmar's Suu Kyi says in hindsight could have handled Rakhine issue better

Aung San Suu Kyi

Aung San Suu Kyi

The UN began work on Wednesday inside Myanmar's violence-torn northern Rakhine State, the first time its agencies have been granted permission to operate there since more than 7,00,000 Rohingya Muslims fled the area a year ago.

"There are of course ways in which with hindsight I think the situation could have been handled better", Suu Kyi said, stumbling over her words at the start.

"But we believe that in order to have long-term security and stability we have to be fair to all sides". In her comments, Suu Kyi said she had read the ruling herself and questioned whether those criticising it had done the same.

However, Aung San Suu Kyi said the reporters have the right to "appeal the judgment and to point out why the judgment was wrong".

Myanmar has also come under global criticism for jailing two Reuters journalists, Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo, who had reported on a massacre of Rohingya civilians.

Suu Kyi's speech would seem to indicate the worldwide condemnation on both cases has finally gotten through to former Nobel Peace Prize victor.

Although the violence in Rakhine state has eased, Myanmar has to deal with its aftermath, especially the repatriation of the Muslim Rohingya who fled and the underlying causes of tension that makes them targets of discrimination and repression in overwhelmingly Buddhist Myanmar.

Myanmar's leader Aung San Suu Kyi on Thursday backed the jailing of two Reuters journalists in her first public comments on the controversial case since the men were sentenced earlier this month.

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Last year, Suu Kyi's office said her reason for not attending the 2017 General Assembly session was because she had to handle domestic security issues after the attacks that triggered the army crackdown.

However, her reticence on both the fate of the Rohingya and the jailed journalists has been condemned by human rights groups and one-time admirers worldwide.

The United States was a strong backer of Suu Kyi as she emerged in the 1980s as pro-democracy icon who endured years of house arrest for standing up to military rule and was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for her struggle. "We can not go and fetch them from Bangladesh".

She also rejected criticism from leaders, including Prime Minister Theresa May and U.S. vice president Mike Pence, over the convictions of two Reuters news agency reporters who had been investigating the killings of 10 Rohingya men and boys.

Aid workers have also said it is not safe for refugees to return yet.

"What I want to know is whether they feel there has been a miscarriage of justice", Suu Kyi said of the widely pilloried trial that was riddled with irregularities.

'Sentence has been passed on them because the court has decided they had broken the Official Secrets Act'. "On all these counts, the trial of the Reuters journalists failed the test".

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