U2's Album Banned in Burma

November 24, 2000 -- U2's new album, All That You Can't Leave Behind, was banned in Burma because of a song dedicated to pro-democracy leader Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, who is under house arrest for her activities.

Democratic Voice of Burma correspondent Myint Maung Maung told British music magazine NME, "The album was banned because it includes a song, 'Walk On,' dedicated to Aung San Suu Kyi and the democracy movement in Burma."

The rockers also have a page on their Web site, U2.com, calling attention to the political situation in Burma, where they say 8 million people have been consigned to forced labor and half a million people are the target of ethnic cleansing campaigns.

Kyi, who won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1991, has spent six of the past 11 years under house arrest and was placed under arrest again last month by the military government.

The activist's struggle was brought to U2's attention when the band members and Kyi were awarded the Honorary Freedom of Dublin award last spring. At the ceremony, where Kyi's son received the award on her behalf, Bono said he was "really proud" to be linked with her.

The band members, traveling the world to promote the new album, could not be reached for comment on the ban, but in an interview yesterday in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, lead singer Bono said his passion for social justice was rooted in guilt.

"One thing I'm very sure about is that I am a spoiled rock star; I am overpaid, overnourished, and overdressed," he told The Associated Press. "And I'm sure the work that I do [for debt relief] at Jubilee 2000 and the work the band has done for Amnesty International is some kind of Catholic guilt, but it's working, so we'll continue with it."