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Interpol's continued Excuses about

Subject: Interpol's continued Excuses about the Heroin Conference.

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NOTE: Australia is partly correct.  Going there they can directly
point-out and challenge the SPDC in front of the world. But the U.S. and
E.U. have valid points that this MAY validate the SPDC/SLORC's so-called
drug enforcement activities and lies.  Though, if those who are
attending know the truth about them, they will be able to see through
the regime's lies and smokescreens.
  Bertinl Lintner expereinced much of the truth more than 10 years ago
in northern Burma.

U.S., Europe Blasted for Boycotting Myanmar Heroin Conference


           YANGON, Myanmar (AP) -- The United States and Europe
           were rebuked today for boycotting an international heroin
           conference because it was taking place in Myanmar, one of
           the world's biggest producers of the drug. 

           Participants at the 4th International Heroin Conference said
           the boycott by the world's biggest heroin-consuming nations
           ran counter to the spirit of international cooperation
           drug trafficking. 

           "As two of the largest markets for heroin in the world, the
           United States and Britain bear a special responsibility to
           work with the rest of the international community in every
           way possible," Home Affairs Minister Col. Tin Hlaing said in
           his opening address. 

           Britain and the United States regard Myanmar as the world's
           single biggest producer of heroin. 

           The four-day conference is being organized by Interpol, the
           Lyon, France-based agency that bolsters links between
           national police forces. 

           Paul Higdon, director of the group's Criminal Intelligence
           Directorate, noted that Interpol had been criticized for
           providing Myanmar "a platform from which it could speak out"
           about its anti-drug activities. 

           Higdon said the boycotting countries had the right to take
           such action, but regretted "that a political situation which
           viewed by many as a serious problem has held hostage the
           universally recognized problem of drug abuse." 

           "I feel there is more to gain through dialogue than boycott,"
           Higdon said. 

           But Washington and other critics have charged that
           Myanmar's military regime has failed to seriously crack down
           on drugs and has such a poor human rights record that it
           does not deserve the legitimacy conferred by the

           The New York-based Human Rights Watch likened holding
           the meeting in Yangon to "holding a convention on weapons
           of mass destruction in Baghdad, on women's rights in Kabul
           or on terrorism in Tripoli." 

           Other countries boycotting the conference include France,
           Denmark, the Netherlands and Norway. Representatives of
           26 countries, including Australia and Switzerland, were
           as attending. 

           Tin Hlaing urged the boycotting countries "to put politics
           aside, for the sake of the millions of people around the
           whose lives are threatened by the drug trade." 

           His speech was repeated almost word-for-word in recent
           commentaries in the state-controlled press. 

           Myanmar officials are especially sensitive to criticism on
           drug issue because they feel the have made great
           achievements in the fight against drugs -- especially
           measured by the number of seizures -- with almost no
           outside aid. 

           Most foreign aid to the country, also known as Burma, was
           cut off a decade ago following the bloody suppression of
           protests against rule by the military, which has run the
           country since 1962.