Aung San Suu Kyi, the Myanmarese pro-democracy leader who was released from seven years of continuous house detention on Nov 13, used her first interview with an Indian media organisation to criticise the world’s largest democracy for its foreign policy towards the military junta-ruled nation.
“I am saddened with India. I would like to have thought that India would be standing behind [the pro-democracy movement]. That it would have followed in the tradition of Mahatma Gandhi and Jawaharlal Nehru,” Suu Kyi told the Indian Express on Wednesday.
“I do not oppose relations with the Generals but I hope that the Indian government would talk to us as well. I would like to see talks begin immediately. I would like to see close and friendly relations, like those that have not been seen recently.”
India has developed close ties with Myanmar over the past two decades, largely in reaction to China’s strong presence in the country and New Delhi’s fears that large Chinese investments in the wider region are part of a plan to encircle India in a “string of pearls”.
Suu Kyi’s comments follow similar remarks from U.S. President Barack Obama, who chastened India for shying away from “violations of human rights” during his landmark speech to parliament in New Delhi last month.