For Immediate Release: 18 November
BURMA - TIME FOR ASEAN
TO BITE THE BULLET AND BACK GENUINE SOLUTIONS
Regional human rights group
Alternative ASEAN Network on Burma (Altsean-Burma) today urged
ASEAN to complement and strengthen UN efforts on Burma by committing
its influence and leverage to secure genuine reforms.
In a briefer titled "Burma: Time for ASEAN to Bite the
Bullet" released today ahead of the ASEAN Summit in Singapore,
Altsean-Burma urged ASEAN and its dialogue partners to throw
their weight behind a genuine reform process that is based on
tripartite cooperation between the military regime, the National
League for Democracy, and ethnic groups.
Such a process, outlined in the NLD’s February 2006 proposal
for a power-sharing transition, would provide durable solutions
for Burma’s troubles which have also affected the region.
For years, the Burmese junta has staved off international pressure
by claiming that it is implementing a roadmap to democracy.
"ASEAN should not allow the junta to use its roadmap as
a smokescreen and justification to wreak havoc. It is time ASEAN
woke up to the truth that the junta’s irresponsible actions
are the greatest threat to Burma’s integrity and stability,"
said Altsean-Burma Coordinator Debbie Stothard.
The Burmese regime’s unilateral and illegitimate roadmap
has only resulted in disaster for the people of Burma. More
people are dying as a result of military attacks by the regime.
In the past year 76,000 people were displaced. 25,000 men, women
and children face imminent starvation because SPDC Army troops
are land-mining rice-fields in Eastern Burma.
Meanwhile, economic mismanagement and rampant corruption have
worsened. The sudden increase of fuel prices by up to 500% in
August has driven a possible 50% of the population below the
"Anyone who really cares about Burma will realize that
the worsening suffering of men, women and children there happened
even when foreign investment increased by over 2,000%. Giving
more money to the regime only gives them more resources to inflict
death and misery.
"Foolishly sticking to the status quo on Burma will hurt
the country and the region. Anyone who thinks the Burmese regime
can solve problems by excluding Burma’s other key stakeholders
probably believes in the tooth fairy," concluded Ms Stothard.
The briefer is available as PDF or Word document at http://www.altsean.org
Enquiries: Debbie Stothard, Cellphone +6681 686 1652