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REPORT ON COMMUNICATION (29/11/96)
/* Written 30 Nov 6:00am 1996 by drunoo@xxxxxxxxxxxx in igc:reg.burma */
/* --------------" Report on communication (29/11/96) "-------------- */
ADDED NOTE TO OUR FRIENDS
The draft resolution A/C.3/51/L.69 was introduced, according to UN press
releases, on 26/11 and approved by the Third Committee on 27/11 without a
vote (means all votes counted in favour of resolution). According to report
by Reuters attached below, the language is relatively mild in comparison to
Special Rapporteur Rajsoomer Lallah's report in October. Although I still
cannot find the draft from the database, it appears that we will need more
lobbying to the U.N. representatives in order to get stronger measures to
be introduced. The draft is going to be voted before UNGA in few weeks time
and in the mean time we have time to lobby the representatives. Continuing
helps from our friends in this matter is greatly appreciated.
With best regards, U Ne Oo.
Letter to U.K. ambassador to the U.N.
Dr U Ne Oo
48/2 Ayliffes Road
St Marys SA 5042
November 29, 1996.
U.K. Mission to the U.N.
Attn: Mr Rob Vaughn Fenn
I am a Burmese national currently residing in Australia and I firstly thank
the Hon. Ambassador for co-sponsoring the draft resolution for situation in
Myanmar, A/C.3/51/L.69, which was introduced by the delegate of Sweden. It
was reported that the resolution, A/C.3/51/L.69, has been approved on 27
November by the Third Committee.
Enclosed with this letter is my communication to the High Commissioner for
Human Rights, Mr JOse Ayala-Lasso, regarding with the U.N. General Assembly
resolution in this year. I call upon you and your government to give
support in order to successfully introduce the measure in above mentioned
communication to this year's U.N.General Assembly resolution in Myanmar.
Finally, I thank you for your kind attention to this matter. The Burmese
people are very grateful for your kind efforts made on restoration of
democracy in Burma.
Yours respectfully and sincerely
Sd. U Ne Oo.
UN REBUKES BURMA FOR CONTINUED POLITICAL SUPPRESSION
UNITED NATIONS, Nov 28 Reuter - A key UN panel rebuked Burma for
suppressing opposition to its military government, using forced
labour to build its economy, torturing prisoners, abusing women and
conducting summary executions.
In a resolution passed by consensus without a vote yesterday,
the General Assembly's social, humanitarian and cultural committee
also said the government needed to protect and allow free access to
Nobel Peace Prize winner Aung San Suu Kyi.
The decision by the committee, which includes all UN members,
means an identical outcome when the Burma resolution comes before
the General Assembly in the next two weeks.
Burma's military government, known as the State Law and Order
Restoration Council, has refused to hold talks with Suu Kyi's
National League for Democracy party, which it suppressed after it
won a landslide victory in a 1990 election.
At the suggestion of the Netherlands, the resolution also
expressed alarm at a November 9 attack against her motorcade by a
crowd pelting vehicles with stones. The government denied it had
anything to do with the attack but foreign diplomats in Burma had
little doubt it was involved.
Burma in September arrested another 109 pro-democracy advocates
to keep Suu Kyi's party from holding a meeting. She was under house
arrest for six years and released in July 1995.
The resolution criticised the government's vision of democracy
in drafting a new constitution, which would continue to give the
army a leading role in political life.
Nevertheless, the committee's resolution used relatively mild
language compared to an October UN report by Rajsoomer Lallah, the
former chief justice of Mauritius, which described
the rights abuses in chilling detail.
But Burmese envoys said the resolution deliberately excluded any
positive developments. It was far more intrusive than in the past
and did not document improvements since 1990, such as an
unprecedented period of peace and a rapidly growing economy.
Lallah in his report said the practice of forced labour for
development projects, usually run by the army, was widespread and
included women, children and old people forced to help build roads,
railways, bridges and gas pipelines. Some of the labour was done by
prisoners, many of whom are systematically tortured.
He said the absolute power of the government resulted in people
living "in a climate of fear that whatever they or their family
members may say or do, particularly in the area of politics,
involves the risk of arrest and interrogation".
US President Bill Clinton has strongly criticised Burma's human
rights abuses. But he has not banned US investments.
Japan, the biggest aid donor to Burma, suspended some big
projects after bloody crackdowns on pro-democracy forces in 1988
but has held off from using its aid of about $140 million a year as
a lever to ensure the country moves toward democracy.