Written by U Ne Oo on 2000-08-31
To our friends on Internet: Please send urgent fax letters to Mr Alexander Downer, Foreign Minister of Australia, for Australian government to protest the Burmese junta re: Suu Kyi/Junta stand-offs.
Regarding Australia's "engagements" to Burma, in addition to the controversial human rights training programme, the government had since early this year assigned a federal police officer as its anti-narcotics official in Rangoon. I have enquired about the progress of that assigment in my early July 2000 letter to Mr Downer. His department replied the assignment as a "success". Unfortunately, we on the Net have seen daily reports of escalating amphatemine drugs entering into Thailand; which simply doesn't match up with the Department's claim. I therefore have written a follow-up letter totherefore have written a follow-up letter to Prime Minister John Howard on 14 Aug 2000, which already posted on the net.
The US Government has also assigned their anti-narcotics officers to Rangoon for some time. Unfortunately, when no tangible progress are seen in terms of reducing drug production or countering trafficking/laundering, such approach by USG must be questioned and reviewed.
-- Regards, U Ne Oo.
Enclosure with this communication:
1. Urgent letter to Mr
Downer, Foreign Minister 31-Aug-2000;
2. Letter to Mr Downer on 4 July 2000;
3. Reply letter from DFAT on 20 July 2000;
4. 28 Aug 2000 AFP report on Suu Kyi/Junta stand-off ;
5. The list of Burmese generals banned entry visa to EU Countries.
Dr U Ne
18 Shannon Place
Adelaide SA 5000
31st August 2000
Minister for Foreign Affairs
Canberra ACT 2600
Facsimile: (02) 6261-3111
Dear Mr Downer:
Re: Stand-offs between Burmese junta and Aung San Suu Kyi
I am writing to you for your urgent attention regarding with situation developing between Burmese military junta and opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi. The NLD leaders, headed by Aung San Suu Kyi, were on their way to a party meeting in a country town 50kms away from Rangoon. However, the Burmese military authorities at the outskirts of Rangoon st of Rangoon stopped them from continuing with their journey. The stand off between the junta and NLD leaders has continued for five days now. I would like to request the Australian Federal Government to protest the Burmese junta about the unlawful restriction placed upon opposition party members. Daw Aung San Suu Kyi and her party members must be able to continue with their journey.
Since Australia has been pioneering for the human rights training program Burma, thgram Burma, the Australian Government needs to send a clear signal to the Burmese military government that the human rights standards set forth by United Nations must be universally respected by all. Notwithstanding current working relationship with Burmese military leaders, the Australian government must maturely and sensitively look at the matters and must denounce such unacceptable violations of human rights in Burma.
Also referring to earlier our request on 4 July 2000, I call upon you and Australian Federal Government to immediately impose visa restriction on Burmese military leaders, drug lords and their immediate family members. I also appeal the Federal parliament to make its initiative to curb the activities of drug traffickers and money launderers.
In closing, thank you for your attention to these matters.
Dr U Ne Oo
July 4, 2000
Minister for Foreign Affairs
Canberra ACT 2600
Dear Mr Downer:
I would like to call your
to the problems of drug trafficking and money laundering by the
military leaders and their associate drug kingpins. Regarding
matter, I enclosed the report, "Burma: Drug Trafficking Trafficking and
which gives a brief summary of current situation along with my
Although Australia may be
geographically far from Burma, it is certainly not immune to the scourge of illicit drugs originated in Burma. You are of no doubt aware that almost 85 per cent of heroin sold in Australia were from Burma.
Since Australia has been a member of Asia Pacific Group on anti-money laundering, I urge Australian Federal Government to enact a legislation similar to the Drug Kingpins Act of United States, and prohibit Australian nationals and Australian businesses from dealing with drug kingpins and military junta in Burma. Immediate plans should also be put in place to curb the activities of drug traffickers in Australia transferring illicit proceeds to the drug kingpins in Burma. In particular, Australia should place entry visa ban on the junta leaders, drug kingpins and their immediate family members and should also mily members and should also put a freeze on any account belonging to them. You may be interested to know that last May, the European Union has imposed restriction on entry visa as well as put a freeze on accounts owned by the Burmese military leaders. For your information, I have included the list of 140 members of junta who have been banned entry to EU Countries. I ask Australian Government to take equally tough stance on the military junta.
In a related matter, I am interested to know your government�s assessment on Australian Federal Police stationing in Rangoon. I would also like you to encourage ASEAN as an organisation to join the Asia Pacific Group on anti-money laundering, especially at the coming ministerial meeting late this month.
In closing, I thank you for your kind attention to these matters. Continuing help to Burma and to our democracy movement by Australian government has been greatly appreciated by the Burmese people.
Sd. U Ne Oo
DEPARTMENT OF FOREIGN
20 July 2000
Dr U Ne Oo
18 Shannon Place
ADELAIDE SA 5000
Dear Dr U Ne Oo
Thank you for your letter dated 4 July 2000 concerning Australian Government policy on Burma and the problem of drug trafficking. I have been asked to reply on behalf of the Minister for Foreign Affairs. Thank you also for forwarding a copy of the report, "Burma: Drug Traffickingport, "Burma: Drug Trafficking and MOney Launderint", and for your good wishes towards the Government's continuing policy approach to Burma.
We are indeed aware that Burma is the major source of 80-90% of the heroin entering Australia, and the Government believes it is important to support domestic and international anti-narcotic activities there. We focus on both direct and indirect activities to promote regional cooperation in addressing the international drug problem The UN Drug Control Program (Utrol Program (UNDCP) has been encouraged by anti-narcotics activities in Burma, in particular the efforts of the Burmese Government since accession to ASEAN to enforce its obligations under the international drug treaties efforts to eradicate illicit drug production and trafficking. The international community will continue to expect the Burmese government to maintain these endeavours.
For these reasons, as you are aware, in January this year, Mr Downer approved the trial attachment of attachment of an AFP (Australian Federal Police) drug liaison officer to the Australian Embassy in Rangoon for a six month period. The attachment is an extension of existing liaison arrangements under which an AFP liaison officer, based in Bangkok, visited Burma regularly to liaise with the Burmese authorities, and to gather intelligence on narcotics trafficking. A number of countries have adopted a similar approach to strengthening cooperation such as the United States which has recently increased its drug liaison contingaison contingent in Rangoon from two to three. It is already apparent that the trial posting has been a success. A review of achievements of the AFP position is currently underway.
The trail attachment is consistent with the Government's approach to internaitonal narcotics control and does not reflect a change in policy towards Burma. The Government's policy on Burma remains focused -- as it has always been -- on the key goals of advancing the cause of democracy and promoting greateromoting greater respect for human rights in Burma.
Sd. Miles Armitage
ASEAN, Burma, Canbodia Section
WASHINGTON, Aug 28 (AFP) - The United States said Monday it had lodged an official protest with Myanmar over its treatment of Aung San Suu Kyi, as the opposition leader spent a fifth night in a roadside standoff with police. State Department spokesman Philip Reeker said US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright was closely monitoring developments in Aung San Suu Kyi's latest challenge to the military government.
"Our embassy in Rangoon has been followas been following this very closely and delivered a diplomatic note to the Burmese government protesting its actions," Reeker said. The United States led a chorus of international condemnation on Friday after the National League for Democracy (NLD) figurehead was stopped south of Yangon as she tested a military ban on her leaving the capital.
"Again, we deplore the attempts to restrict the movements of Aung San Suu Kyi," said Reeker on Monday. "The refusal of Burmese authorities to allorities to allow her travel flagrantly violates international human rights instruments which guarantee freedom of movement.
"We urge Burmese authorities to engage in dialogue -- uphold their international obligations and have a dialogue with Aung San Suu Kyi and the democratic opposition."
Reeker said the United States had been in touch with the Red Cross to facilitate the delivery of food, water and medicines to the 55-year-old Nobel laur-old Nobel laureate.
US officials understood that she had been prevented by the Myanmar authorities from seeing her personal physician, he added. The junta says Aung San Suu Kyi had been provided with supplies and a mobile bathroom, and that an ambulance and doctor have been stationed nearby her two vehicles in the hamlet of Dallah. Monsoon rains have battered the area for the past three days, making life extremely uncomfortable for Aung San Suu Kyi and her supporters.
Her party vowed Sunday that she would fight a "war of endurance" to force the regime to allow her to travel freely and to go about legitimate party business in Myanmar. The government insists the group was trying to travel into a dangerous area without proper precautions.
Aung San Suu Kyi was released from house arrest in 1995, but her movements are closely monitored by her ever-present military escort. The confrontation in Dallah is her firsh is her first attempt in two years to test the restrictions, after a dramatic 13-day stand-off in August 1998 on a bridge outside Yangon which ended when she succumbed to illness and dehydration.
The NLD won a convincing
in 1990 general elections but the results have never been
the military, which has carried out a campaign of intimidation
the opposition since the student uprisings of 1988.