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NATIONAL UNION OF STUDENT IN AUS &
Subject: NATIONAL UNION OF STUDENT IN AUS & ABSDO MOVE ON SDC STUDENTS
---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: Tue, 12 Sep 1995 06:04:42 +0930
/* Written 12 Sep 6:00am 1995 by DRUNOO@xxxxxxxxxxxx(DR U NE OO) in igc:reg.burma */
/* ------------" NUS-Australia/ABSDO move on SDC students "---------- */
I received following copy of letter from the ABSDO in Australia, expressing
concerns about the continued detention of Burmese students in Thailand's
Special Detention Center. -- U Ne Oo.
National Union of Students
West Melbourne 3003
P.O. Box 14278
Melb City Mail Centre
Mr Benhar Silparcha
Royal Thai Government
c/o Thai Embassy
111 Empire Circuit
8th September 1995
The National Union of Students in Australia is the peak body representing
Australian University Students. We represent over 400,000 students in
Australia on most university campuses.
I am writing to raise our concerns about the Thai Government's
'constructuve engagement' policy towards Burma. Although the Government has
used the reasons that they are not intending to interfere in Burmese
internal affairs, the fact remains that the Thai Government was one of the
first national Governments to recognize the illegal Burmese regime which
came to power after a brutal crackdown on people peacefully demanding
democracy and human rights in Burma.
NUS deeply regrets the indefinite detention of 30 Burmese students in the
Sepcial Detention Centre in Bangkok. These students have not received any
proper trial since December 1993. These students are not criminals but are
the non-violent students activistss who are fighting for democracy, human
rights and freedom for the people of Burma. They are recognised as
political refugees by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees,
and we would request that the Thai Government treat them as such. It is
ironic for a democratic country cush as Thailand to treat students in such
a sya that invites comparison with the brutal treatment that similar
students have received at the hands of the Burmese military dictator ship.
It is clear that their continued imprisonment stands against all principles
of natural justice,a nd undermine the respected position of Thailand in the
region. We would ask that they be released immediately in Thailand. the
forced repatriation of three hundred students to Burma following the 1988
visit of General Chavalit Yongchaiyut was unacceptable and resulted in the
arrest and imprisonment of many of those students.
The continued support by your Government for the military regime in Burma
lends support to such mistreatment of students. Yor planned visit to Burma
and the invitation to the leaders of the Burmese junta to the ASEAN summit
in December of this year, further reinforces this view. It is inappropriate
to use such a summit to lend further acceptance to this regime.
The NUS has further concerns which relate to the environmental devastation
which is occurring within Burma. Despite the fact that Thailand banned the
logging in 1989 to save the environment, the Government has encouraged
logging companies to engag in intensive logging causing deforestation and
the destruction of marine resources. Thailand's own intesest in maintaining
its status as a Newly Industralised country should not jeopardise the
Burmese people or thier existence.
We would like to express our dispaaointment that the burmese Students
Organisation (All-Burma Students' Democratic Organisation) in Australia
have not been able to put their views to the Thai Ambassador in Australia
in order to address the above concerns. We will certainly continue to
support them in their campaign on this issue and take such steps as are
necessary until these demands are met.
Yours in union,
Sd. John CRAham
/* Endreport */