Suu Kyi's Yank Swimmer Lands in Thailand

Sen. Webb: 'What he did was regrettable'
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Aug 16, 2009 6:31 AM CDT
Sen. Jim Webb answers questions today at a press conference in Bangkok, Thailand.   (AP Photo/David Longstreath)
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(Newser) – While Myanmar activist Aung San Suu Kyi begins another 18 months under house arrest, the American responsible for her sentence is free and has landed in Thailand, reports CNN. John Yettaw, whose release was won by Sen. Jim Webb, was hospitalized for observation in Bangkok. “He had a medical emergency this morning when they read him his orders of deportation,” Webb said. Yettaw had been sentenced to 7 years' hard labor for swimming to the home of Suu Kyi, who was under house arrest at the time.

Yettaw said he was compelled by a dream to protect her. “I believe what he did was regrettable. I believe it was hurtful to the person that he thought he was trying to help," Webb said. "But at the same time, on humanitarian grounds, I feel fortunate that the government honored my request to allow him to come back here to Thailand with me.”