Breaking news: Burma’s justice system still atrocious

Chalk this one up in the “I’m not surprised” column:

U.N. investigators said on Tuesday the trial of Myanmar opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi flouted international standards and urged the country’s military rulers to ensure it was open and fair.

In a strongly worded joint statement, the five human rights investigators noted a U.N. panel issued an advisory ruling a year ago that the Nobel laureate’s continued house arrest was arbitrary.

Well, yes, but in another sense, it’s not really arbitrary at all; it’s just…continuous. Even before Burmese authorities found, in the form of the soaking body of a foolish American, the excuse to try her again, she was still under arbitrary and unjust house arrest. And even if, as James Downie suggests, the delay in the beginning of her trial does represent a half-hearted sop to the standards of international justice and public opinion, the outcome is no less in doubt. There seems to be little that is less constant in Burma over the past 19 years than the arbitrary detention of Aung San Suu Kyi.

(image from flickr user Gilberto Viciedo under a Creative Commons license)