NAYPYITAW, Myanmar – Myanmar opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi used her first speech in parliament to call for laws protecting the rights of the country’s impoverished ethnic minorities.
Suu Kyi stood from her seat toward the back of Myanmar’s parliament today to call for an end to discrimination against ethnic minorities as part of the “emergence of a genuine democratic country.”
Suu Kyi has long championed the rights of ethnic minorities, including the Shan, Karen and Kachin. She was not likely referring to Muslim Rohingyas – recently embroiled in ethnic violence that drew a strong government crackdown – because most Myanmar people consider them Bangladeshi exiles.
During decades of military rule, cultures of Myanmar’s ethnic minorities were suppressed.
Suu Kyi won her first seat in parliament in historic April by-elections.