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Mizzima: Burma's monks under close

Burma?s monks under close watch as the deadline comes

New  Delhi, May 24, 2000
Mizzima News Group

May 25 deadline called by Buddhist monks falls tomorrow, the junta has
put the monks in Burma under surveillance. The authorities have asked
senior monks in the monasteries in Rangoon, Mandalay and Monywa not to
allow any visiting monks to spend night and requested them to take
necessary actions any unrest does not occur.

The government has restricted the movement of more than 40 monks in
Mandalay alone. They are not allowed to go outside their monasteries.

Bus drivers on Rangoon-Mandalay Highway are reportedly asked to sign
papers taking responsibility if their buses carry any monk or opposition
NLD members.

The Sangha Thamaggi, an underground monk organization in Burma, in last
February issued a statement calling for the government to enter into
talks with Nobel Peace Laureate Aung San Suu Kyi and leaders of her
National League for Democracy (NLD) by May 25, otherwise the monks
throughout the country would turn the monasteries into ?strike camps?.

The government on Monday accused anti-government activists in exile
planted the stories of monks? unrest. Government controlled Radio and TV
last week showed the country top military rulers and their families
visiting the monasteries in Rangoon and Mandalay offering robes and

Historically, monks and students played an active role in the politics
against the British colonialists and successive military regimes in
Burma, which came after 1962.

In October last year, two senior Buddhist monks Pegu?s Kya Khet Wyne
Sayadaw and Amarapura?s Gandayon Sayadaw called for meaningful dialogue
between the regime and opposition NLD party for peaceful political
changes in the country.