In Burma I was a colleague of Aung San Suu Kyi and a very active member of Generation 88. My husband and I spoke up in the face of violence and were persecuted because of this. We were arrested and imprisoned separately for trying to protect people who were being violently attacked by Burmese military soldiers. While in prison I was sexually abused when I was subjected to invasive, humiliating and unnecessary “medical examinations” in front of male soldiers.
My husband and I were both released after serving our prison terms, but we were not free to resume our lives. Instead, we were constantly harassed by Burmese police. They threatened to arrest us again and frequently subjected us to lengthy interrogation sessions. They also frightened away all of the customers of our family business so that we could no longer work to support ourselves. We finally decided we could no stand the harassment any longer and sought Aung San Suu Kyi’s blessing to leave Burma. I have been living safely outside of Burma for 10 years but would like to take this opportunity to use my voice on behalf of the thousands of people of Burma who continue to be unable to do so.
Photo credit: Hseng Noung Lintner