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Texaco Protest Press Rel.


For Immediate Release May 14, 1996

Media Contact: Pamela Wellner Cellular (218)467-9124 Jim Baldauf-
Cellular (512)517-1047


Houston, Texas (May 14, 1996)  On May 14 at 9:00 am at the Hyatt
Regency Hotel in downtown Houston, Texaco shareholders will be
greeted by human rights, environmental and religious organizations
concerned about human rights abuses connected to Texaco's natural
gas pipeline project in Burma.
	Religious leaders will ask shareholders to vote in favor
of Proxy Item 4 calling for Texaco's Board of Directors to
terminate operations in Burma until political power is transferred
to the democratically elected government of Burma (Myanmar) and
political prisoners are released.
	"SLORC gains political legitimacy and maintains financial
solvency, in part, through partnerships with foreign oil
companies.", said Sister Marian Adrian, from the Grey Nuns of the
Sacred Heart, co-proponent of Proxy Item 4.
	Burma is ruled by a military regime called the State Law
and Order Restoration Council (SLORC). SLORC has been
internationally condemned by the US State Department, the UN Human
Rights Commission, the European Parliament and Amnesty
	In 1990 the Burmese people voted in the democracy party,
SLORC nullified the results and retained their stronghold. The
exiled National Coalition Government of the Union of Burma elected
in 1990, said, Rthe investment of Texaco has buttressed the
repressive military regime through the payment of millions of
dollars for exploration rights, goods, and services.S
	The groups assert that Texaco not only helps prop up the
military junta, but also links Texaco's gas project to human
rights abuses.
	Texaco is the lead operator in a natural gas venture 260
miles off BurmaUs coast.  Texaco will build a pipeline to
transport the gas from the sea to Thailand. Once on land they will
connect their pipeline to one currently being built by the Unocal
and Total oil companies in the Tenasserim region of southern
Burma. The pipeline will traverse through diverse ecosystems
including intact tropical rainforest.
	The Karen Human Rights Group (KHRG) has reported that
thousands of Karen, Mon and Tavoy villagers are the victims of
forced relocation, forced labor, rape, torture and murder all
along the proposed pipeline route. These abuses caused by SLORC
troops are connected to both the pipeline security and the
construction of roads, railways and military bases.  (over) (2)

RThe SLORC troops responsible for the pipeline security have
forcibly removed many villages on the pipeline right-of-way with
no compensation for the loss of their homes or farms.S  said Pon
Nya, chairman of the Mon, Restoration Council, RWorse yet,
villagers have to pay fees to SLORC for things like pipeline
security and railroad construction projects made with slave labor,
which includes children and the elderly.S

The KHRG has interviewed villagers who testify that they were
forced by SLORC troops to work on pipeline roads .
RPeople...mainly women, are being forced to do four day shifts of
labor to burn the bush, pull up stumps, clear and level the ground
to extend helipad facilities (possibly a runaway) for the
pipeline...S, said the April 8, 1996 KHRG report.

RTexaco supports this pariah regime and justifies it by saying
they are improving economic conditions that will in turn improve
human rights standards. But exactly the opposite is happening. The
reality in the pipeline area is forced labor, forced relocation,
impoverishment and increased brutality, this is what SLORC does
throughout the country and the pipeline project is no exception.S,
said Pamela Wellner, coordinator of the Free Burma - No
Petro-dollars for SLORC campaign.  RTexaco can not separate itself
from these abuses unless it completely withdraws its operation
from Burma."

Burma is considered the South Africa of the 90s. Cities such as
Oakland, San Francisco and Madison have all passed laws barring
municipal contracts with Burma involved companies, including
Texaco, Unocal and PepsiCo. On May 17, the Senate Banking and
Finance Committee will hold a hearing on bill S.1511 calling for
U.S. economic sanctions against Burma. These sanctions have been
called for by BurmaUs democracy movement.

Burma democracy leader and Nobel laureate Aung San Suu Kyi after
being released from six years of house arrest said, Rto go into it
(Burma) too early will not only hurt the process of
democratization, it could also go against sustained economic
democratization...in the long run, it will be the businessmen
themselves who will be hurt by investing at the wrong time.S