- - Thursday, September 30, 2010

BURMA

Officials to free Suu Kyi after election

RANGOON | Democracy icon Aung San Suu Kyi will be released just days after Burma’s first election in two decades, officials said Thursday.

The Nobel peace laureate, who has been detained for most of the past 20 years since winning the country’s last general election, will be freed when her current term of house arrest expires Nov. 13, the unnamed sources said.


Neither Mrs. Suu Kyi nor her National League for Democracy party will participate in the first election since their 1990 victory, and the vote has been dismissed as a sham aimed at hiding military power behind a civilian facade.

NORTH KOREA

First photo published of Kim’s heir apparent

SEOUL | Secretive North Korea finally put its heir apparent on show to the world Thursday, releasing a photograph of a chubby and serious-faced Kim Jong-un seated close to his ailing father, Kim Jong-il.

Analysts said the issuance of the first-ever official photo confirms the young man’s status as leader-in-waiting of the impoverished but nuclear-armed communist nation.

Official media published the photo of the son as part of a large group of leading ruling-party officials two days after the party had bestowed powerful posts on him at its highest-level meeting in 30 years.

SRI LANKA

President approves ex-army chief’s jail term

COLOMBO | Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa approved a 30-month jail term for his former army chief and political rival Thursday, confirming a military court verdict that the rival was guilty of fraud. The decision may disqualify the ex-general from continuing as an opposition lawmaker.

Mr. Rajapaksa endorsed a court-martial decision on former Gen. Sarath Fonseka on Thursday and “has recommended two and half years in his endorsement in keeping with the maximum period for the offense in accordance with the law,” a statement from the president’s office said.

Fonseka’s party, the Democratic National Alliance, cried foul at the jailing, calling it personal and political revenge.

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