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Boycott Indo-Burma Trade

Burmese Relief Center--Japan
DATE:May 27, 1995
SUBJ:Article from FIST News
Bulletin of All Burma Students

>From FIST News Bulletin
All Burma Students League
30 April 1995


Lt. Gen. Tun Kyi, Trade Minister of
Burmese military junta, made a clear
statement about the trade relationship
between India and Burma at the
meeting with the representatives of
the Federation of Indian Chambers of
Commerce and Industry (FICCI) held
in New Deli on 11th April 1995.  In
his address to the participants of the
meeting, "The opening of border
trade signifies the large potential for
bilateral trade between our two
countries , which is at present
growing at a high space.  India
should become an important player in
the new market-driven economy
which is emerging in Myanmar
(Burma).  There is considerable
scope for India's cooperation in areas
like agriculture, fishery development,
of tourism and industrial
development in Myanmar," lie said.
     Though it has been delayed
for months, the opening ceremony of
this Indo-Burma border trade was
inaugurated on 12th April 1995 at
Moreh, a border township of India. 
On another front, members of the All
Burma Students League, a students
organization based in India launched
anti-border trade campaign at Moreli. 
A Press Statement released by ABSL
on the same day said that it strongly
condemns such a bilateral trade
relationship between a parliamentary
democracy like India and a dictatorial
and oppressive military junta like
SLORC of Burma.  It not only
violates all international norms and
ethics, but also is an indirect support
to the murderous and brutalizing acts
of  the SLORC." ABSL feels that the
implementation of this trade treaty
will only provide greater resources
for the SLORC to buy arms which
would be used against the innocent
and peace loving people of Burma. 
Moreover, SLORC will rise the
opportunity to push more and more
opium and heroin into Manipur and
through India to the international
market.  It is in the interest of the
international community that
economic sanctions be imposed on
SLORC till democracy is restored in
         While the Burmese democratic
forces oppose the border trade, the
people of India who love democracy
and human rights also strongly
condemns the Government of India
for trading with the illegal military
government in Burma.  Prof.  Kailash
S. Aggarwal of Friends of Burma, in
his press note, strongly condemned
the immoral and undemocratic act of
the Government of India in opening
the trade treaty with SLORC.  He
asserted that tile opening of the treaty
smacks of double standards and
hypocrisy on the part of the Indian
Central Government.  While the
Indian Government has been
speaking in favour of restoration of
democracy and human rights in
Burma in most national and
international fora, it has clandestinely
entered into a trade agreement with
the oppressive junta of SLORC, said
Prof. Aggarwal.  He also stated that
India seems to be failing not only in
its moral duty and responsibility, it is
also falling into the trap of SLORC
who would keep on engaging in drug
trafficking through India so as to fill
its coffers for the purchase of arms.
         In another press release,
Maharaj Kumar Priyabrate Singh,
Chairman of Manipur Cultural
Integration Confece (MICIC),
Imphal, had elaborated on the
misdeeds of SLORC and said that
since 1962 the military junta in
Burma has been encroaching into
Manipur (India) border and has killed
and harassed a number of Indian
citizens.  He also appealed to the
Government of India to keep the
trade treaty in abeyance till
democracy is restored in Burma.
         As anti-border trade voices
were being echoed in India, it was
learnt that two time-bombs were
exploded at Tamu township in
Burma, in protest against the trade,
on the inaugural day itself.  The
explosion was engineered by the
Students Army which is fighting
against the Burmese military
government.  In the press a note was
issued by the Students Army.  "The
explosion was the clear expression of
the people of Burma towards the
trade.  Further attacks will be carried
out more widely if the trade is not
stopped," it warned the Burmese
military junta.  One bomb exploded
nearby the SLORC's communication
office in Tamu and another exploded
near the Independence Monument at
Tamu.  Although the casualties were
not known, many innocent people,
who happened to be near the place,
were forcefully whisked away by the
SLORC's Intelligence members. 
Seven of them are still in detention.