Burma's pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi is ready to go online to broaden her domestic and international contacts after years of detention when the military regime allowed her virtually no contact with the outside world, her security chief said today. She may even be tweeting soon.
The Nobel Peace Prize laureate, released from seven years of house arrest in November, has been allowed Internet access and will begin to go online after recovering from a cold and cough, said Win Htein.
"She is delighted that she can now connect with people inside and outside the country as she's keen to build up a broad network," said the security chief.
Shortly before her release, Suu Kyi said she wanted to get a Twitter account once she was freed so she could "get in touch with the younger generation."
Her aides at the time said she had a laptop computer and described her as tech-savvy.
Win Htein said Suu Kyi was the first client to receive a new mobile broadband Internet service launched by the government provider, adding that she was the first of 50 people so far to apply for it.
The 65-year-old Suu Kyi has spent 14 of the past 20 years under house arrest. For most of this period, she was not allowed a telephone line at her residence and was generally cut off from the rest of the world.
The ruling junta aggressively censors the Internet and blocks politically sensitive websites such as those promoting human rights. The government often slows down Internet speed or totally cuts Internet connection during politically sensitive periods. During a crackdown on pro-democracy protesters in September 2007, it cut all access to the Internet and shuttered many cyber cafes.