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The BurmaNet News, October 31, 1997

------------------------ BurmaNet ------------------------          
"Appropriate Information Technologies, Practical Strategies"          
The BurmaNet News: October 31, 1997             
Issue #857


October 30, 1997

RANGOON, Oct 30 (Reuters) - Burma's military government said on Thursday it
had detained four members of Aung San Suu Kyi's National League for
Democracy for questioning over a gathering that was blocked by police. 

The four senior NLD officials were held late on Tuesday after the meeting
was blocked earlier in the day, an NLD source said. 

Police had set up road blocks and trucked away party supporters from the
meeting at Mayangone, outside Rangoon, the source said. 

A statement issued by the ruling State Law and Order Restoration Council
(SLORC) said the four were members of the Mayangone branch of the NLD. 

It did not give their names or say if the four had been released. Officials
were not available for comment. 

``They have attempted to conduct political meetings outside the framework
of the law and have violated the established regulations governing such
meetings,'' the statement said. 

Military authorities, some armed with clubs and shields, on Tuesday set up
barricades and blocked Suu Kyi from holding the Mayangone meeting,
witnesses said. 

The government said on Tuesday that Suu Kyi and the NLD had been told not
to hold the gathering. It said their efforts to try to go ahead despite the
warning would only slow down the country's moves towards democracy. 

The gathering would have been the 1991 Nobel Peace laureate's second
political meeting outside the city since she was released from house arrest
more than two years ago. 

NLD sources said Suu Kyi had planned to organise the youth wing of the
township's party organisation and speak to supporters. 

But instead, the young supporters who gathered to meet Suu Kyi were stopped
by police when her car drove up. One student said there was a small scuffle
around the car when supporters were not allowed to speak to Suu Kyi. 

A few dozen NLD supporters were taken away in trucks and dropped off a few
miles from the office, witnesses said. 

The SLORC did not explain exactly what the NLD had done that was against
the law, but local analysts speculated that the party did not get
permission from the government to hold the meeting. 

Permission is required for any public gathering and is also needed to use a

The statement issued on Thursday said the NLD and the other nine political
parties that have rights to carry out party activities but must comply with
the law. 

``Legal political parties do have the responsibility and obligations to
meet their commitments,'' the statement said. 

``Defying the law for the sake of embarrassing the government will only
create unnecessary setbacks in the national endeavours in building
democratic institutions.'' 

Burma has been widely criticised for failing to recognise the NLD's
sweeping 1990 electoral victory. 

Last week Suu Kyi -- who has been under close surveillance, with her
movements limited since last December -- was allowed to meet NLD youth
members and speak in a different township a few miles outside Rangoon. 

Analysts had said the move, which came on the heels of talks between the
government and some NLD officials and after the SLORC allowed an NLD party
meeting to take place, could have been a possible easing of tension between
the military and the opposition. 


October 30, 1997
Bhanravee Tansubhapol

EU sets aside qualms, allows observer status

The European Union, a strong critic of human rights abuses by Rangoon, has
agreed to allow Burma and Laos to participate in its upcoming meeting with
the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, Foreign Minister Prachuab
Chaiyasarn said yesterday.

The EU had informed Thailand about its change of heart and the minister
conveyed the message to his Burmese counterpart, Ohn Gyaw, in talks
yesterday in Rangoon.

Mr Prachuab said in Rangoon that the Burmese minister welcomed the decision
despite the fact that Burma and Laos will be allowed only observer status at
the Asean-EU Joint Cooperation Committee gathering.

The meeting, to be held next month in Bangkok, is a forum for Asean and EU
senior officials to review cooperative plans.

The Europeans had been reluctant to let a Burmese delegation attend the
forum, saying it and Laos could only join in the talks when the EU extends
the cooperation agreement currently covering Brunei, Indonesia, Malaysia,
the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.

Burma and Laos joined Asean in July.

As Mr Prachuab began his two-day visit to Rangoon yesterday, Ohn Gyaw
pledged to avoid causing any unease for Asean and said his government wants
more dialogue with the opposition National League for Democracy.

He said the ruling State Law and Order Restoration Council is also promoting
talks between opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi and visitors outside her

As Asean's EU coordinator, Mr Prachuab proposed the appointment of either
the Thai ambassador in Rangoon or a senior Foreign Ministry official in
Bangkok to serve as liaison with Burma and respond to concerns from Europe. 

He said Burma promised to hold a long-awaited meeting next month in Rangoon
to prepare a navigation agreement in the upper Mekong River involving
Thailand, Burma, Laos and China.

Thailand will host a joint commission meeting, probably from December 10
to 12, to evacuate bilateral trade and political and social relations with
Burma, he added.

Mr Prachuab wraps up his visit today by asking Slorc chairman Than Shwe and
first secretary Khin Nyunt to release Thais jailed in Burma. He denied that
he would meet Mrs Suu Kyi.


October 29  1997
William Barnes in Bangkok 

The skirmish in Rangoon shows how reluctant the junta is to allow opposition
leader Aung San Suu Kyi any room for manoeuvre.

But it may also provide a rare glimpse of differences within the regime over
how to deal with the charismatic leader who has proved a thorn in its side.

After a three-hour standoff between troops and members of Ms Aung San Suu
Kyi's party, it was a member of military intelligence that ordered the
barricades to be lifted.

Last week, the junta allowed the 1991 Nobel Peace Prize winner to address a
small crowd on the outskirts of the capital, leading some observers to talk
of a possible "softening" and of tentative "peace feelers" being put out.

The State Law and Order Restoration Council, as the junta styles itself, was
given more notice of this week's meeting nearer central Rangoon, and their
response was that it should not go ahead.

The junta fears and loathes Ms Aung San Suu Kyi because she has everything
they have failed to acquire: a popularity and legitimacy that crosses ethnic
and class divisions.

There has been no evidence that any of the regime's leaders are prepared to
ease their iron grip, let alone give in to her demands for a more democratic
political system.

But there do appear to be some differences over how to lift the country's
status as an international pariah.

The hardliners in the junta - led by the regional military commanders and
army chief General Maung Aye - react to pressure by turning inwards and
becoming even harsher with their critics.

But the more pragmatic and sophisticated members of the intelligence
organisation - lead by Lieutenant-General Khin Nyunt - appear more prepared
to see how far Ms Aung San Suu Kyi might be allowed to run loose.

General Khin Nyunt might even be prepared to see what benefits talking to
her might bring - something the junta's hardline members have vigorously


October 29, 1997


News Release

Severe flooding has occurred in Burma during the rainy season this year. It
destroyed hundreds of thousands of acres of paddy fields in Pegu Division.
On account of this flood, the Slorc regimes is facing a shortage of rice. In
addition it also has other unsolved problems that pressed SLORC to request
aid from the International Community.

The demand for rice in the flood-effected areas is so acute the Slorc is
demanding that Karenni villagers share half of their paddy produced at the
lowest price or free as donation. The Karenni village militia who were
mobilized by Slorc have been instructed to expedite the order as mentioned
above without failure so that Slorc will be able to solve the rice problem.

Karenni villagers who are concentrated in the relocation  camps now face
starvation as Slorc has stopped giving out rice to them. The Christian churches
are allowed to distribute rice to the villagers in the relocation camps but
now Slorc told the churches to first give the rice to them and they will
distribute it. It is very probable that Slorc will indirectly stop churches
from supplying rice. "It is most likely if Slorc received rice from the
churches, it will not distribute it," said a church leader who refused to
express his name.

The other news is Slorc is mobilizing villagers in the relocation camps to
serve as militia.

Date: 29 October 1997


October 29, 1997

                KAREN NATIONAL UNION
                        KAW THOO LEI
                Press Release No.61/97
Regarding 1997 SLORC Offensive against KNU

Taungoo District

* 1/10/97: Tharn-daung township LORC and SLORC LIB 707 were given the 
sanction to use 700,000 Kyat to build a road from Pa-let-wa village in
Tharn-daung township to Plaw-me-doe (Ye-da-gon) village. The total cost was
estimated to be 5 million Kyat. The villagers not only have to pay the 4.3
million Kyat difference, but they have to clear the road-way and build the
road, daily, eating from their own food supply.

* Starting from the beginning of October, troops from SLORC LIBs 701 and 707
set up camp in Klaw-me-doe village in Tharn-daung township and have been
driving villagers from Poo-mu-doe, Ler-kla-doe,Keh-doe, Kaw-poe-lu, Moo-lo,
Thay-lo and etc for relocation in Klaw-me-doe village. The SLORC troop took
the villagers' belongings left behind in the evacuated villages. The
relocated villagers have to pay porters fees of from 300 to 500 Kyat per
household, every month. They are allowed away for at most a week at a time,
to go back and work in their farms of the old villages.

* 5/10/97: The SLORC IB 39 and LIB 707 summoned a large number of people
from villages in Baw-ga-leet and Gor-theh-doe areas, for porterage. Again,
on 15/10/97, troops from the two SLORC battalions summoned 30 more persons
from Gor-theh-doe village.

* 17/10/97: Military column 2, led by Aung Lwin, from SLORC LIB 707 came to
Da-per-kee village in Tharn-daung township, and shot and ate 3 pigs of the

* 20/10/97: The SLORC operation commander Aung Naing Tun came and set 
up camp at Mea-tha-gon and Chauk-chin-daung in  Leik-tho area of Tharn-daung
township. He then ordered a person from each household to bring his own food
and work for him and, as a result, the villagers are not free to do their
own work up to now.

Nyaung-lay-bin District

* 12/10/97: One Myint We, said to be a SLORC military intelligence man, at
the concentration village of Aung-soe-moe in Mone township, alleged the
villagers were in possession of  20 hidden guns. He ordered them to hand
over those guns or pay 150,000 Kyat. The villagers had to settle for the
payment of the money demanded.

       Nowadays, The SLORC troops and the military intelligence men in
Nyaung-lay-bin and other district are making personal gains by variously
contrived means such as extorting money or robbing the property of the
villagers, after intimidating them with accusations of serious crimes.

(Translated, printed and distributed by the Karen Information Center)


October 31, 1997

                        KAW THOO LEI
                Press Release No. 62/97
Regarding 1997 SLORC Offensive against KNU

Pa-pun District 

* 1/9/97: A military column from SLORC IB 19 came to Aw-lor-kee village of
Pa-pun township and took away villagers Maung U Lay (76) and Maung Ya (70),
two brothers. On 17-10-97, the SLORC troops informed the relatives to come
and pay a ransom of 60,000 Kyat for the release of the two.

* 10/10/97: Troops from SLORC LIB 531 came to Ka-lor-say village and, after
ransacking the houses, burnt down the village.

* 18/9/97: Military columns led by the SLORC IB 19 commander and the LIB 340
commander went round to Nat-kut-ta, Nat-kut-kee and No-ta-kaw-ber villages
in west Pa-pun area and seized 67 villagers who were later sent to Koo-zeit
and Ma-dauk in Shwe-jin townships. The troops, after ransacking houses in
the villages, burnt the belongings of the villagers they could not carry.

* 18/10/97: General staff officer 2, Soe Win of the SLORC Operation Command
in Pa-pun township detained more than 70 Baptist Christian pastors at the
end of their annual conference held in Pa-pun town and tried to intimidate
them with various kinds of threats. He finally said that if the pastors
promised to come and live in the "peace" areas together with the people
under their charge, they would be released, otherwise they would be retained
under detention. On 20/10/97, the pastors were released for bringing back
the people to come and live in areas designated by the SLORC. The SLORC
threatened to kill all civilians found any where, on the spot, if the
pastors failed to do as instructed.

Kaw ka reik District

* The SLORC South-East command have been engaged in the forced relocation 
of people from 40 villages in Kaw-ka-reik and Cha-in township. The people
are relocated in a place designated by the SLORC as a new town. The fate of
the people relocated was said to be something akin to that of being sent to
hell as some 2,000 or more of them could no longer bear the hardships and
ill treatment, they have now fled into the border area of Thailand as new
refugees. The SLORC troops and their followers took all the belongings of
the villagers they wanted and burnt the rest.

(Translated, printed and distributed by Karen Information Center)


October 30, 1997

To All Shans and All those Concerned

Khun Kya Oo, a life long activist for freedom and democracy, passed away at
14:00 hours local time at Maesai, surrounded by friends and relatives. Until
his death, he was the Chairman of the Shan Human Rights Foundation, the
group that has made Shan plight known to the world by its monthly reports.
His remains are at Wat Phataek. The funeral is being arranged. Details shall
be reported ASAP.


October 1997

[This report reviews the situation in the Huay Kaloke refugee camp, located
near the Thai-Burma border. The authors of this report prefer not to be
named due to the sensitive situation in the Mae Sot area]

In July of this year, the first Huay Kaloke situation report was completed.
Since that time, things have remained relatively calm, and most of the
regulations have remained the same. Unless noted below, all of the
regulations given in the first report still stand. The policy on rent is
also still the same. Dissatisfaction with the leadership continues.
Objections raised by the villagers are still met with indifference by the
leadership. On the good side, most people feel that the situation now is
better than it was. Many people have been able to grow their own vegetables
to supplement their diets and to make themselves more self sufficient. This
self-sufficiency is even more important now due to the state of the Thai
economy as prices for goods have gone up. The residents still do not want to
return to Burma as they continue to fear for their safety, and they are
fearful of what this coming dry season will bring.

The section leaders have been asked to go around and collect the rent which
is still 50 Baht per month in the village section of the camp. Many people
no longer have enough money to pay, and so they have told the section
leaders that they will have to give rice instead. This further reduces the
rice rations of refugees who already have rice taken out of their rations to
feed the new arrivals who are not allowed to collect rice. It is the poorest
of villagers who cannot pay the rent. They are also the ones who cannot
afford to buy vegetables and meat to supplement their diets, and thus the
reduced rice ration will have an adverse affect on their health. In the
market the situation is the same. Karens and Indians who are allowed to open
stalls in the morning must pay rent for these stalls. They have constructed
the stalls themselves, but they must still pay 300 Baht a month in order to
use them. These generally consist of a table. Some refugees, usually women,
do not build stalls but carry their produce around on their heads. Usually
they will find a place on the ground to sit in the market and sell their
goods. For this, they must pay a 5 Baht a day fee.

The water supply situation in Huay Kaloke, while never good, is expected to
be even worse this year. The addition of refugees from the relocated Huay
Bone (Don Pa Kiang) camp and many new arrivals from Burma has meant that 
the already scarce water resources will have to be stretched even farther. Many
wells go dry or are periodically dry during the cold season, even before the
hot season has come. Water can be bought from the landowner, but many 
people don't want to have to pay for this, cannot afford it, or just do not
want to
out of principle. Now that the camp is fenced in, it is unclear whether
residents will be allowed to go out to the Thai village of Huay Kaloke to
use the wells there. They have to pay a nominal fee to do this and they feel
better about it than buying it from the landowner.

Charcoal is now being provided by the BBC to each family in order to keep
down the high costs of cooking fuel. One bag is provided each month per
family. This is almost enough if there are only two or three people in one
family, but most houses have five to six people and sometimes as many as ten
or twelve people under one roof. For these people, one bag will last barely
one week. One bag of charcoal in Huay Kaloke is now 150 to 180 Baht. 

The curfew is still in place with villagers expected to have their
lights out by eight o' clock. Families with school children are now allowed
to keep a candle lit to study by until ten. Short-wave radios are still
permitted as long as the volume is kept low and is not offending anybody.

Foreigners and non-camp Karen were allowed entry into the camp for the Wrist
Tying ceremony. This openness lasted for three days and then the camp was
closed again.
As of 14/10/97 entry was possible to foreigners if they had a purpose to be
in the camp although passports must be left at the gate. Karen are allowed
out of the camp to work. Karens are not allowed into the camp without an ID
card saying that they are residents of Huay Kaloke camp. These ID' s are not
issued individually, but by family.
Passes are issued by an Aw Saw checkpoint next to the main gate. They are
good for one day and no money is paid for them. At the village gate to
Thai Huay Kaloke village, the Aw Saw collect l0 Baht from each Karen
before letting them through. 
The camp is also periodically closed to new arrivals, who then have the
choice of continuing on to another camp, usually Mae La (Beklaw) camp, going
to work in Thailand, or returning to Burma.

The market is now allowed to be open from 6am until 9am. At this time
Thais are allowed to come into the camp to sell produce and other goods.
Karens and Indians are also allowed to sell things in the market at this
time, however they must pay rent to the landowner for the stall which they
sell from. After 9am, only the landowner' s shop is allowed to be open. The
exception to this appears to be the tea shops which are still allowed to be
open all day. The landowner is also said to be planning to open a movie
house. This will replace the eight or so previous Karen owned movie houses.
Generators are still not allowed in the camp, although this probably does
not apply to the landowner. Small shops are still open all day within the
village section or the camp selling small one to five Baht items like garlic
and betel nut and fruit. They probably do not compete with the landowner' s
shop. There was a previous order that these shops must be closed also, so
it is not clear whether that order was rescinded or if the Thai authorities
jut look the other way.

Although the DKBA has not directly threatened the camp yet, the rainy season
is near its close and the camp residents fear what the dry season will
bring. DKBA soldiers who have crossed to visit relatives on the Thai side
(as civilians and without arms) have privately said that the next dry
season, they would rather not come to burn the camp, but to kill the Thais.
The possibility of this happening is not likely, however, as many DKBA
soldiers have relatives in the camp, they are also not happy with the way
the refugees are being treated by the Thai authorities. The DKBA still have
units at Kaw Moo Rah.

The soldiers previously stationed at the camp gate have been transferred.
They have exchanged places with the BPP detachment from Mawker refugee 
camp. The soldiers at the camp gate have let it be known that should the
DKBA and Burmese return to the camp, then the refugees had better run quickly as
that is what the soldiers will be doing. The soldiers at the village gate
have not commented, but as they are the same ones who did not bother to come
out of their house in the last attack, nobody is counting on them.
In the last few weeks two incidents occurred wherein Karen villagers were
beaten by the Thai security. In the first incident, a young Karen man in the
market who is known to not use drugs, drink alcohol, or even smoke, was
approached by an Aw Saw soldier from the village gate and a Palat Amphoe
and accused by the soldier of using drugs. Although he denied this charge,
he was slapped repeatedly by the soldier. The soldier and amphoe official then
walked out. The Karen man reported this incident to Major Mary Ohn, but
did not get a favourable response. The villagers vouched for his innocence.
The man finally went straight to Mary Ohn and said that he would go directly
to the checkpoint to file a complaint unless she did something. On hearing
this, she then went with the camp secretary to the checkpoint to talk with
the soldiers, who told her mai pen rai [it doesn't matter]. . 
In the second incident, a Karen man, who was admittedly drunk, went to the 
camp gate and began to verbally abuse the Thai soldiers stationed there. The
Thai soldiers then beat the man. A rumour followed this incident that the
mall had been beaten to death. Although still unclear, apparently another
man had died of illness that day and the rumour mill had merged the beaten
mall and the dead man into one.

Down at the Moei River, a border road which was little more than a pot
holed track has been widened to two lanes with concrete drainage ditches and
the new metalled surface is almost completed. This road goes from the old
KNU (and now Burmese/DKBA) base at Kaw Moo Rah to Mae Tao near the new
Friendship Bridge. Two permanent wooden checkpoints are also being 
completed along it. One going from Kaw Moo Rah to Huay Kaloke, and the other
on the way from Kaw Moo Rah to Mae Tao. These new checkpoints have all
appearances of toll gates. The only things along this road are the very poor
Thai village of Wang Kaew across from Kaw Moo Rah a Buddhist monastery, and
a small impoverished village of Karen from Burma. There are also a few
fields and sawmills (on the Burma side of course), but compared to the pot
holed road round Mae Sot, this new road which apparently goes to nowhere
and is rarely travelled is an oddity, unless one remembers that Kaw Moo Rah
used to do a thriving black market and teak trade when it was a KNU base.
Also the new bridge is very much in the spotlight these days. Rumours
that the camps in Tak province may be further consolidated may become true
if it is deemed that Huay Kaloke is in the way of another Thai-Burmese
infrastructure project. Building the road along the river may be an
attempt to bypass this problem and thus not arouse international attention. 


October 29, 1997
By Howard Winn in Bangkok

Burma's ruling military junta appears to be increasingly dependent on profits 
from the drug trade, the country's most valuable export.

The latest United States report on Burma estimates the trade in narcotics at 
$US1.24 billion ($1.8 billion) in 1996.

According to the US report, drug profits have helped the regime through a 
foreign currency crisis caused largely by the increase in arms spending by the 
State Law and Order Restoration Council (SLORC).

In the mid-1990s this arms spending rose to as much as half of government 
outlays, amounting to the equivalent of 8 to 10 per cent of Burma's gross 
domestic product (GDP).

In the early '90s, the regime paid for its arms spending by cutting funds for 
health and education, reneging on interest payments on its debt and drawing 
down its foreign reserves, according to the US report.

As a result, the Government's foreign exchange reserves slumped from $US370 
million at the end of 1989-90 to $US43 million in 1992-93.

But in the mid-1990s there was a sharp increase in gross unrecorded foreign 
exchange inflows, equivalent to more than 10 per cent of GDP in 1995-96.

The report says this was because more profits from narcotics were remaining 
inside the country.

The regime encouraged this by its partial liberalisation of the currency in
1993, which allowed foreign currencies to be converted into the local
currency - 
the kyat - at the market exchange rates, rather than at the considerably higher 
official rates.

In the late '80s and early '90s, the SLORC - formed in 1988 - discontinued the 
Burmese Government's practice of confiscating bank deposits that could not be 
shown to have been legally earned.

The SLORC introduced a partial liberalisation of the economy after coming to 
power in 1988, but these reforms became untenable after the fiscal difficulties 
encountered by the regime because of increased defence spending.

Exports and GDP growth slowed. However, fuelled largely by drug profits, 
imports and consumption continued and created an illusion of rapid economic 

According to Burmese Government figures, economic growth slowed from 9.7 
per cent in 1992-93 to 5.8 per cent in 1996-97.

The US report shows that the rise in retained drug profits undermined Burma's 
fragile legal economy. The drug-related foreign currency inflows led to an 
appreciation of the kyat and discouraged the production of import substitutes.

Private firms found it increasingly difficult to compete with the drug-financed 
imports, resulting in the failure of many companies and a slowing of the 


October 29, 1997

THE Foreign Ministry yesterday strongly denied news reports that it has
ignored Thais jailed in Burmese prisons by failing to visit them and provide
them with much needed medicine.

The ministry said in a statement released yesterday that it has done its
utmost to ensure that the Thais have been treated fairly by the Burmese.

"Embassy staff of every rank in Rangoon have been assigned to visit the
Thais in the jails and to counsel them. Visits are usually conducted once a
month or more often for special cases," the statement said.

During the visits, the embassy staff usually give the prisoners food,
clothing and medicine provided through donations or paid for by the staff.
The visits are conducted with the permission of Burmese authorities, it said.

Recent news reports have claimed that the Foreign Ministry has not taken
adequate care of Thais imprisoned in Burma by failing to give them medicines
and visit them regularly.

The reports quoted a senior Thai Army source as saying that relatives of the
imprisoned Thais had now sought Army help.

The ministry said the condition of a jail in a particular country was the
sole responsibility of that country and that Burmese authorities treated all
prisoners equally regardless of nationality.

He said the Thai prisoners are in fact receiving better treatment than other
prisoners as they obtain special treatment, including food and medicine,
from embassy staff.

Foreign Minister Prachuab Chaiyasan will travel to Burma today to act as a
coordinator between Burma and the European Union, an informed source said

The source said Prachuab is scheduled to meet his Burmese counterpart U Ong
Gyaw during his two-day visit to Rangoon.

Prachuab has just returned from a trip to a number of European Union
countries, including Belgium and France, where he was informed of the EU's
position on Burma, which recently became a member of Asean. The EU is one 
of the grouping's 15 dialogue partners.

Thailand is currently the coordinator between the Association of Southeast
Asian Nations (Asean) and the EU.


October 29, 1997

  * Updates on U Mya Wai's case *

On 24 October, the Ministry of Justice of Japan submitted a statement to the
Tokyo District Court. This statement is in response to the request for
suspension of execution of the repatriation order for U Mya Wai which had
been filed to the Court on 9 October by U Mya Wai's lawyers. 

The statement, which is 75 pages long, asks the Court to reject the request.
It at length is trying to impress the court that there is no reason for U
Mya Wai to fear persecution when he is repatriated. According to the
statement, this is because U Mya Wai has not submitted any documents to
prove his participation in pro-democracy activities in Burma. The statement
also points out some inconsistencies in what U Mya Wai has been saying at
the various interviews done during the refugee application process regarding
the dates of his arrest and the length of detention, saying that if the
arrests and torture had such an effect on him that he would fear
persecution, U Mya Wai would remember the dates and the time periods correctly. 

The lawyers representing U Mya Wai held a meeting this morning (30 Oct) and
they are planning to submit another statement in response to the one from
the Ministry of Justice by 5 November. They are also working hard to gather
'evidence' to convince the Court that it would be very dangerous for U Mya
Wai to be repatriated. The Court is expected to make a decision on the
request (for suspension of repatriation) in two weeks. 

In the meantime, there has been no action on the part of the Ministry of
Justice regarding the second application for refugee status (filed on 21
September) or application for provisional release (filed on 17 October). 

Over 40 letters and faxes have come from around the world and within Japan
expressing concern on this case to the Immigration Bureau in care of the
People's Forum on Burma. They have been forwarded to the Immigration Bureau,
and photocopies of them have been forwarded to U Mya Wai.

According to the lawyers that have been to see U Mya Wai recently, his
physical condition, which was by no means good at the beginning of
detention, has improved considerably. 

Yesterday, the Nagoya District Court made a decision to repeal the decision
by the Ministry of Justice not to grant refugee status to a Pakistani man.
The court said that the man will be in danger of persecution if he goes back
to Pakistan. This is the very first case in Japan in which the court
repealed the rejection of refugee status by the Ministry of Justice. This is
a considerably encouraging news.

The People's Forum on Burma/Lawyers' group for Burmese asylum seekers


October 29, 1997

Time Magazine is compiling its list of "100 most important people of the
20th century." to be published early next year. 

Write to them suggesting Aung San Suu Kyi with a brief argument
as to why she should be included. The category in which she would most
likely fit is "Warriors and Statesmen." 

Time 100
Room 2548
Time and Life Building
Rockefeller Center
New York, N.Y. 10020


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Campus activism: 	zni@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx 
Boycott campaigns:        ai268@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx      
Buddhism:                    Buddhist Relief Mission:  brelief@xxxxxxx 
Chin history/culture:        [volunteer temporarily away] 
Fonts:                  		tom@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx 
High School Activism: 	[volunteer needed] 
History of Burma:            zni@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx 
International Affairs: 	 Julien Moe: moe@xxxxxxxxxxxxx  
Kachin history/culture:      74750.1267@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx  
Karen history/culture: 	Karen Historical Society:  
Mon history/culture:         [volunteer needed] 
Naga history/culture: 	Wungram Shishak:   
Burma-India border            Aung San Myint:  
Pali literature:            	 "Palmleaf":  c/o burmanet@xxxxxxxxxxx 
Pipeline Campaign       	freeburma@xxxxxxx 
Resettlement info:	refugee_help@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx  
Rakhaing (Arakan) history/culture	 
			Kyaw Tha Hla:thisthis@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx 
Rohingya culture		volunteer needed 
Shan history/culture: 	Sao Hpa Han: burma@xxxxxxxxxxxxx 
Shareholder activism:       simon_billenness@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx  
Teak Boycott		Tim Keating:  relief@xxxxxxx 
Total - France		Dawn Star: cd@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx   
Tourism campaigns:      	bagp@xxxxxxxxxx     "Attn. S.Sutcliffe"    
volunteering: 		refugee_help@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx 
World Wide Web:              FreeBurma@xxxxxxxxx 
Geographical Contacts: 
Massachusetts		simon_billenness@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx  
[Feel free to suggest more areas of coverage] 
This single page serves only as an easy to remember URL and departure 
point to resources promoting the establishment of democracy in Burma. 
Please write to FreeBurma@xxxxxxxxx to add a site or for further 
information." - Glen, system administrator 
to get involved in the Free Burma Coalition, send a message to: 
or visit their homepage, accessible through: http:// FreeBurma.org 
There is also an e-mail list-server especially for Free Burma activists 
The BurmaNet News is an electronic newspaper covering Burma. 
Articles from newspapers, magazines, newsletters, the wire 
services and the Internet as well as original material are published.    
It is produced with the support of the Burma Information Group  
(B.I.G) and the Research Department of the ABSDF.  We are also  
grateful to many other friends around the world who send us articles 
to post. 
The BurmaNet News is e-mailed directly to subscribers and is 
also distributed via the soc.culture.burma and seasia-l mailing lists.  
For a free subscription to the BurmaNet News:  
send a message to: majordomo@xxxxxxxxxxx    
a. For the BurmaNet News only:  
    in the message, type:    subscribe burmanews-l 
b. For the BurmaNet News and 4-5 other messages a day: 
    in the message, type:     subscribe burmanet-l   
(NOTE: all lower case letters, last letter is a lower case "L", not the  
numeral one). 
Letters to the editor, comments or contributions of articles should be  
sent to the editor at: strider@xxxxxxxxxxx