BANGKOK — ; A Burmese MP belonging to Aung San Suu Kyi’s opposition National League for Democracy (NLD) has fled to Thailand, saying junta officials had told him to stop his political activities.
“The authorities started to stop me from conducting political activities related to the NLD in my own constituency,” Tin Tun Aung, elected MP from Yin Mabin district in northern Burma, told RFA’s Burmese service.
“In the past, they just followed me around and reported on my activities. Now the head of the local authorities himself told me outright not to conduct NLD activities. The authorities also refused to let me put up an NLD signboard in front of the NLD local office,” he said.
Tin Tun Aung is now in Thailand after fleeing Burma earlier this week. He asked that his exact whereabouts not be disclosed.
Tin Tun Aung is also a veteran journalist with 30 years’ experience working for the Burma Broadcasting Service (BBS)—before the 1988 uprising and crackdown that brought the current military government to power—and then for the official Burmese print media.
He spent 2-1/2 years in detention from 1996-99 after he and other opposition MPs tried to convene a parliament of those elected in 1990 but barred from taking office.
Local officials in his district meanwhile posted a sign reading “Yin Mabin USDA,” referring to the pro-junta Union Solidarity and Development Association. “This implies that the whole constituency supported the USDA, which is not true because all of the 101 villages in the constituency voted unanimously for me in the 1990 elections,” Tin Tun Aung said.
“When I discussed this issue with them they were not happy, and later a police officer in full uniform came to my house and asked me details of my personal background,” he said. “They are trying to create NLD-free areas in Yin Mabin and in Pa-le,” in northern Burma.
He also urged the Burmese people to join a signature campaign pressing for the release of NLD leader Aung San Suu Kyi.
“I would like to request people to sign the signature campaign to have Aung San Suu Kyi released. NLD party members should sign in the campaign without fail, but if signing becomes a threat to your personal security, or if there are negative social or economic consequences, please think carefully first.”