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Burma Related News
July 14th, 1997
(2)Thailand Soldiers 'arrest' student exiles
(3) Malaysian scrutiny of Burma bid grows
The Straits Times
DRUGS TALKS: Members of a Chinese anti-narcotics delegation have arrived
in Yangon for talks with their Myanmar counterparts on drugs control,
the official press reported yesterday.
The one-week visit comes shortly after six Mekong countries, including
Myanmar and China, met in Bangkok under the auspices of the UN last week
to discuss regional co-operation in drugs control. -- AFP.
South China Morning Post
Soldiers 'arrest' student exiles
ASSOCIATED PRESS in Bangkok
Thai soldiers entered a camp for refugees from Burma and arrested 10
students for the second time in recent months, an exiled group of
Burmese students said yesterday.
The All Burma Students' Democratic Front said soldiers from the Royal
Thai Army's 9th Division entered the Tam Hin refugee camp, 75 kilometres
west of Bangkok, last Wednesday and arrested 10 students who fled
fighting in Burma.
The group said the students, who were arrested and beaten with 12 others
in April, were charged with illegal entry into Thailand. Nearly 100,000
refugees from Burma are living in camps along the Thai border, after
fleeing repeated Burmese military offensives against ethnic and student
The Royal Thai Army has generally treated refugees well along the
But those in the southern sector, under the control of the 9th Division,
have been abused, aid workers say.
The division has forced refugees back across the border into the path of
the Burmese Army, and at times cut off food, medicine and access by aid
South China Morning Post
Malaysian scrutiny of Burma bid grows
IAN STEWART in Kuala Lumpur
Burma is coming under closer scrutiny in Malaysia as a potential member
of the Association of South-east Asian Nations.
The move for a closer look, after Asean's watershed decision to defer
Cambodia's admission, has not only spurred non-governmental groups to
reaffirm their opposition to Burma's entry, but has prompted
establishment commentators to suggest that the Burmese should improve
their domestic affairs.
Malaysia strongly supported the membership of Cambodia, Laos and Burma
in order to expand Asean to 10 countries, which would form the core of
the East Asian Economic Caucus proposed by Malaysian premier Dr Mahathir
But now that Cambodia's entry has been deferred indefinitely, there is
less of an imperative for Laos and Burma to be admitted.
The Sunday Star newspaper described how the Cambodian episode seemed to
have "marred Asean's zest to group all 10 Southeast Asian states" on
July 24 when foreign ministers begin their 30th ministerial meeting.
Chandra Muzaffar, head of the Just World Trust, said if the use of force
was Asean's concern in deferring Cambodia's entry, then Burma's
admission should be delayed. He said the Burmese military junta used
force to stay in power and prevent the elected National League for
Democracy from forming the government.
Laotian Foreign Minister Somsavat Lengsavad confirmed his country's
desire to join Asean, Thai media said.
"THERE WILL BE NO REAL DEMOCRACY IF WE CAN'T GURANTEE THE RIGHTS OF THE
MINORITY ETHNIC PEOPLE. ONLY UNDERSTANDING THEIR SUFFERING AND HELPING
THEM TO EXERCISE THEIR RIGHTS WILL ASSIST PREVENTING FROM THE
DISINTEGRATION AND THE SESESSION." "WITHOUT UNDERSTANDING THEIR
STRENGTH, WE CAN'T TOPPLE THE SLORC AND BURMA WILL NEVER BE IN PEACE."
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