Written by U Ne Oo on 1998-11-17
[Following is letter to UN Secretary-General regarding with recent reshuffle in Burma. It is evident that the reshuffle has been made by SPDC simply to side-simply to side-step the international community's overwhelming demand for peace and reconciliations in Burma. Your immediate attention in this matter is most appreciated as strong UNGA resolution for Burma being required. Letters to the world's leaders such as President Bill Clinton and Prime Minister Tony Blair may also help with regards to strong UNGA resolution for Burma. --Regards, U Ne Oo.]
Dr U Ne Oo
18 Shannon Place
Adelaide SA 5000
17 November 1998.
Mr Kofi Annan
United Nations Headquarters
New York N.Y. 10017
United States of America.
c/-UN dept.of political affairs.]
I call Secretary-General's attention to the recent cabinet reshuffle in Burma by the State Peace and Development Council(SPDC). The SPDC announced the reshuffle of its cabinet on Saturday 14 November 1998. As a result of the reshuffle, the former Foreign Affairs Minister, U Ohn Gyaw, was resigned and, the Hon. U Win Aung, Burma's Ambassador to United Kingdom, is appointed by SPDC as the new foreign minister.
I like to inform the UN Secretary-General and, particularly, to the United Nations General Assembly that the State Peace and Development Council is not a legitimate government of Burma and, therefore, the SPDC appointed foreign minister, Hon. U Win Aung, is not a legitimate representative of Burma. As such, the 53rd Session of UN General Assembly should refuse to give the floor to the SPDC appointed Foreign Minister unless such appointment is endorsed by the Parliament in Burma (or) Committee Representing People's Parliament(CRPP). In this connection, I should like to referred to my letter to the President of 53rd Session of UN General Assembly, Hon. Didier Opertti, on 21 September 1998.
We have been watching with intense interest on the developments in Burma since the Assistant-Secretary Mr de Soto's visit to Rangoon in late last month. Current cabinet reshuffle is a clear indication that the SPDC has not been taking the proper path to reconciliation with the opposition National League for Democracy. I therefore urge the Secretary-General and UN General Assembly to put the strong resolution on Burma.
The Burmese military authorities have continued to detain the elected representatives and NLD supporters. Reports indicate these elected representatives are being held in separate locations in different parts of the country. It is also reported that the Burmese military, especially teported that the Burmese military, especially the intelligence services, has been putting pressures on the detained-Members of Parliament to resign from their posts. I urge the UN General Assembly condemn such actions by Burmese Military Intelligence Services.
In closing, I thank you for your kind attention to this matter. Continuing efforts made by the United Nations and international community to bring peace and reconciliation to Burma are greatly appreciated by the Burmese people.
Yours respectfully and sincerely
Sd. U Ne Oo.
AAP NEWS 15/11/98
BURMA-IMAGE ASIA: BURMA CABINET CHANGES AIM TO POLISH IMAGE
DATE 16:57 15-NOV-98
ASIA: Burma cabinet changes aims to polish image BURMA IMAGE
RANGOON, Nov 15 Reuters-- Burma has sought to improve its poor image abroad with the appointment of a career diplomat as foreign minister at the weekend, government sources said on today.
The elevation of Burma's ambassador to Britain, Win Aung , to the foreign ministership in yesterday's cabinet reshuffle marks a government effort to ease long-government effort to ease long-standing pressure on military-ruled Burma from Western nations, the sources said.
Win Aung, a diplomat for at least 10 years and former Burma envoy to Germany, replaced Ohn Gyaw who retired after serving in the post since the early 1990s.
"The change comes as Burma needs to improve its foreign image," one government sources said.
"Win Aung is a man capable of playing an active role and taking initiatives. We don't know if Burma foreign policy will change but it will be conducted in a different style."
Ohn Gyaw was regarded as a conservative in the government, which is criticised by the international community for its human rights record and heavy-handed treatment of opposition political activities.
"It cannot be because of his age. There are many as old as him in the cabinet," the source said. Win Aung is 54.
The surprise reshuffle include the addition of a third deputy prime minister, Lieutenant General Tin Hla, who would continue to serve as minister of military affairs.
Tin Hla has overseen the miliseen the military's interest in tow local banks, various businesses as well as industrial joint ventures partly owned by the army.
The reshuffle did not affect deputy Prime Minister Tin Tun, 68, who is expected to retire soon because of frail health.
Lieutenant General Tin Ngwe was named Minister of the Prime Minister's Office, and former Minister of Industry-2 Hla Myint Swe became new transport minister.
Four new deputy minister and four supreme court judge were also named to succeed retiring senior colleagues.
Government sources said they regarded new Foreign Minister Win Aung as a rising star, partly due to his close ties to Lieutenant General Khin Nuyunt, the powerful Secretary One of the ruling State Peace and Development Council.
"It is good that a person who has to implement the policy is close to the person who lays down the policy," a political analyst said.
Win Aung has occasionally contributed articles to state-run newspapers under a pseudonayn to express his political and foreign policy views, the government sources said.
As ambasssador to Britain, he had the tough job of maintaining relations with London as it tried to force Burma out of the International Labour Organisation and discouraged Britons from visiting burma, the sources said.