AHRC calls for Security Council intervention in Burma

Embargoed for Release:
Friday, 6 June 2003
At: 02:00 GMT

For more information, please contact:
In Hong Kong, Basil Fernando: +852-2698-6339

AHRC calls for Security Council intervention in Burma

(Hong Kong, 6 June 2003) – The UN Security Council must urgently intervene to address the situation in Burma after the most recent attack on the National League for Democracy there, the Asian Human Rights Commission urged today.

“Mild protest by the UN Special Representative is insufficient to deal with the present situation,” said Basil Fernando, Executive Director of the Asian Human Rights Commission. “The Security Council must act first with a view to ensuring the security of those persons subject to this attack, and secondly with the intention that military rule in Burma be brought to an end.”

On May 30 and 31 gangs of government-organized thugs, backed by the police and military, attacked a National League for Democracy gathering. Recent reports indicate that convicted criminals may have been brought by the military to spearhead the attack. Over 70 persons are believed to have died. To date, the fate of at least another 150 persons, including the Chairman and Deputy Chairman of the party-Daw Aung San Suu Kyi and U Tin Oo-remains unclear.

“This is authoritarianism’s latest trick,” remarked Basil Fernando. “Throughout Asia, government-organised thugs are being used to carry out the dirty work of dictators. Well-planned schemes to undermine genuine popular aspirations for human rights and social change are being made to appear spontaneous.”

The Asian Human Rights Commission has called for a team to be sent to investigate the attack under the auspices of the Security Council. The team should be the initial step in a strategy to have the military rulers in Burma removed from power and tried for crimes against humanity under international law.

Further details may be found in the statement by the Asian Human Rights Commission, ‘Attack on democracy party in Burma demands an uncompromising international response’ (AS-19-2003), available online at: http://www.ahrchk.net/statements/mainfile.php/2003statement/105/.

Asian Human Rights Commission – AHRC, Hong Kong

Document Type : Press Release
Document ID : AHRC-PL-11-2003
Countries : Burma (Myanmar),
Issues : Democracy,