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FORUM-ASIA’s Participation in the International Campaign on Burma

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FORUM-ASIA’s member and partner organisations have joined in a series of international solidarity campaigns in support of the people’s struggle in Burma through a variety of statements, press releases, rallies and protests.
FORUM-ASIA’s member and partner organisations have engaged in
solidarity action to pressure the governments and international
communities to take proactive and meaningful measures against Burma’s
repressive State Peace and Development Council (SPDC). This is to
support the Burmese peoples’ struggle for freedom and democracy.

The Solidarity for ASEAN People’s Advocacy (SAPA) Regional Steering
Committee, which includes also FORUM-ASIA, issued a statement on 28
September. The statement was endorsed by over 130 organisations. The
letter demanded “action more than just words” from member states of
Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), “even if this threatens
to harm their short-term economic interests.” The letter called upon
ASEAN states to use all diplomatic means at their disposal to work
towards an improvement of the situation on the ground in Burma, and
urged them to better coordinate their efforts with those of the
international community.

The Cambodian Human Rights and Development Organisation (ADHOC) and
other organisations led a protest on 28 September in front of the
Burmese Embassy in Phnom Penh. The peaceful rally was continued on
Tuesday 2 October, with participants holding banners condemning the
Burmese authorities’ use of violence against their own citizens. In a
press statement, ADHOC demanded that the member states of the United
Nations, ASEAN members in particular, take “political, economic and
diplomatic measures” against the SPDC. ADHOC extended their condolences
to the Burmese people and condemned the continuing violence. They also
implored the Royal Government of Cambodia to work more to end the
current situation of human rights violations in Burma.

On 29 September, Aliansi Jurnalis Independen (AJI), a FORUM-ASIA member
based in Jakarta, co-organised a day of solidarity and prayer at Angkor
Wat, in Siem Reap, Cambodia, during the 8th Informal ASEM Seminar on
Human Rights held in the city. A moment of silence and prayer was
observed at 11:00, followed by a series of statements from regional
human rights NGOs and civil society organisations. AJI and its
co-organisers called for a stop to the violence that the junta have
subjected the Burmese people to, as well as for the release of all
political prisoners including journalists and reporters. Several
statements paid tribute to the courage and determination of the Burmese
people and monks.

On 2 October, more than 100 civil society organisations including
People’s Solidarity for Participatory Democracy (PSPD) and the Korean
House for International Solidarity (KHIS) held a demonstration in front
of the Burmese Embassy in Seoul. More than 250 people attended the
protest calling for an immediate stop to violence against monks staging
peaceful demonstrations.

In Sri Lanka, Buddhist Sangha monks staged a rally which was joined by
a cheering crowd of activists from 30 civil society organisations,
endorsing an open letter to the Burmese Embassy in Colombo on 4

Task Force Detainees of the Philippines (TFDP) released a statement
condemning the actions of the junta. Their statement demanded that the
SPDC take steps towards a real democracy and the ratification of a
democratic constitution, and that it free all political prisoners.