Written by U Ne Oo on 2000-08-21
To our friends on Internet:
Please send fax/air letter to Mr Juan Samaranch, President of International Olympic Committee, to exclude Burma from thde Burma from the Olympic Games. In his 6 July 2000 letter to Australian Democrat Senator Vicki Bourne, he indicates he would follow the United Nations' suit regarding with sporting sanctions on Burma. Here, we have the ILO, a specialized agency of United Nations, not only withdrawing technical assistance to Burma, but also "[Burma] not receive any invitation to attend meetings, symposia and seminars organised by ILO". The IOC must therefore exclude Burma from Sydney Olympic Games.
Apart from this, I haven't seen aI haven't seen any evidence of IOC operated under the charter of United Nations. As we all know, the International Olympic Movement was established much much earlier than that of the United Nations. However, it seems that IOC's status/standing in relation to United Nations is no different from other sporting bodies such as the International Cricket Council(ICC) or Federation de Internationale Football Association (FIFA).
Mr Samaranch doesn't seems to have taken effort to differentiate between the action to be taken againsbe taken against a recalcitrant government and that of a country. This confusion is made in his letter " the country expressly recognized by the international community, in particular by the United Nations, is Myanmar. The IOC [therefore] has recognized the Myanmar Olympic Committee." Of course, there can be no such thing as Burma/Myanmar as a country may not be recognised by the United Nations Organisation. But the UN could withdraw its recognition to illegitimate government (or at least what we are aiming at the moment).
Any hint of international "good-time fellas" like IOC disregarding international public opinion will cause a grim prospect for IOC. Lets put these into word and send a strong message to the President of IOC.
-- Regards, U Ne Oo.
Enclosed with this communication:
#1 LETTER TO THE PRESIDENT OF IOC
Dr U Ne Oo
18 Shannon Place
Adelaide SA 5000
21st August 2000
Juan Antonio Samaranch
President, International Olympic Committee
C.P. 356, Chateau de Vidy
1007 Lausanne, Switzerland
Facsimile: +41 21 621 6216
Dear Mr Samaranch,
Re: Excluding Burma/Myanmar from the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games
I am writing to you in relation to your comment which indicates that the IOC may consider sporting sanction on Burma/Myanmar if the United Nations were to do so. I like to draw your attention to the July 1999 decision of the International Labor Organisation (ILO), which is a specialised agency of the United Nations Organisation. Enclosed with this letter is the July 1999 Resolution by the International Labor Council which instructs ILO to withds ILO to withdraw any technical cooperation and assistance to Burma. In the International Labor Council meeting in July this year, the ILC has given the Burmese military government the 30th November 2000 as a deadline to comply with the recommendations made by the ILO.
It is my understanding that there has not been any precedent for Burma/Myanmar as a country or its people could be expelled from, or could be unrecognised, by the United Nations Organisation. In this case, the International Labor Organisation determines that meamines that measures against Burmese military government have now been warranted so as to improve its behaviour. The International Olympic Movement also has a precedent for excluding South African Olympic Team as a measure taken against the Racist and Apartheid Government of South Africa. We are requesting your committee to take such measures regarding with the Burmese military government.
You have made a reference to the position of United Nations
as regards your decision to include Burma Team in the Sydney
However, you should note that the International Olympic
Committee is neither
a specialised agency nor under formal structure of the United
As the President of I.O.C., you must be aware that
any decision made by you or your executive committee will be a sovereign decision of I.O.C. Therefore, the I.O.C�s decision to include Burma in the Sydney Olympic Games will be interpreted duly as you and the International Olympic Committee are ignoring the international public opinion.
Sd. U Ne Oo
1. Hon Alexander Downer, Minister for Foreign Affairs, Parliament House, Canberra ACT 2600.
2. Sydney Olympic Committee Headquarterrs, 235 Jones Street, Ultimo, NSW 2001.
RESOLUTION ON THE WIDESPREAD USE OF FORCED LABOR IN MYANMAR
Reaffirming that all member States have an ober States have an obligation to apply fully, in law and in practice, the Conventions that they have voluntarily ratified,
Recalling that Myanmar ratified the Forced labor Convention, 1930 (No.29), and the Freedom of Association and Protection of the Right to Organise Convention, 1948 (No.87), on 4 March 1955,
Taking note of the provisions of United Nations General Assembly resolution 53/162 of 9 December 1998 and of United Nations Commission of Human Rights resolution 1999/17 of 23 April 1999, which also address the use of fos the use of forced labor in Myanmar,
Recalling the decision of the Governing Body to place on the agenda of its November 1999 session and item entitled: "Measures, including recommendations under article 33 of ILO Constitution, to secure compliance by the Government of Myanmar with the recommendations of the Commission of Inquiry",
Gravely concerned by the Government's flagrant and persistent failure to comply with the Convention, as concluded by the Commission of Inquiry established to examine the observance of the forcance of the forced Labor Convention, 1930 (No. 29),
Appalled by the continued widespread use of forced labor, including for work on infrastructure projects and as porters for the army,
Noting the report (dated 21 May 1999) of the Director-General to the members of the Governing Body on measures taken by the Government of Myanmar following the recommendations of the Commission of Inquiry in its report on "forced labor in Myanmar (Burma)",
1. Deeply deplores that:
(a) the Government has failed to take the need to take the necessary steps to bring the relevant legislative texts, in particular the Village Act and Town Act, into the line with the Forced Labor Convention, 1930 (No. 29), by 1 May 1999, as recommended by the Commission of Inquiry;
(b) at the end of the twentith century, the State Peace and Development Council (SPDC) has continued to inflict the practice of forced labor -- nothing but a contemporary form of slavery -- on the people of Myanmar, despite repeated calls from the ILO and from the wider international community nal community for the past 30 years;
(c) there is no credible evidence that those exacting forced labor in Myanmar have been punished under section 374 of the Penal Code;
2. Reaffirms that this issue should be further considereed by the Governing Body in November 1999.
(a) that the attitude and behaviour of the Government of Myanmar are grossly incompetible with the conditions and principles governing membership of the Organization;
(b) that the government of Myanmar shouldof Myanmar should cease to benefit from any technical cooperation or assistance from the ILO, esxcept for the purpose of direct assistance to implement immediately the recommendations of the Commission of Inquiry, until such time as it has implemented the said recommendations;
(c) that the Government of Myanmar should hence forth not receive any invitation to attend meetings, symposia and seminars organized by the ILO, except such meetings that have the sole purpose of securing immediate and full compliance with the said recommendations, until such time as it has implemented the recommendations of the Commission of Inquiry.
THE INTERNATIONAL OLYMPIC COMMITTEE
The Hon. Vicki Bourne
Senator for New South Wales
Parliament of Australia, The Senate
Commonwealth Parliament Offices
70 Philip Street
sent by fax to +61-2-9247-9681
Lausanne, 6 July 2000
Ref. nr 10921/2000/hmy
Thank you for your letter dated 29 June 2000, to which I reply as follows:
In accordance with the Olympic Charter, it is the IOC's policy to recognize all National Olympic Committees from independent States recognized by the international community. It is expected that all National Olympic Committees be represented at the Olympic Games.
In the case to which you are referring, the country expressly recognized by the international community, in particular by the United Nations, is Myanmar. The IOC has recognized the Myanmar Olympic Committee.
It is not up to the International Olympic Committee to envisage political sanctions against any country. If the international community, in particular the United Nations, were to decide such sanctions towards a given country, the IOC might reconsider its position towards the National Olympic Committee of that country, whilst keeping in mind that one of the IOC's main tasks is to defend and protect the interests of the athletes who are unfortunately too often the first victims of political sanctions.
Sd. Juan Antonio Samaranch.