30 August 2003, in the wake of intensified international pressure
against the Burmese military regime, newly appointed Prime Minister
General Khin Nyunt unveiled a 7-point ‘road map’ to
democracy. According to Khin Nyunt, the SPDC road map will reconvene
the stalled 1993 National Convention to draft a state Constitution,
which will be voted on in a national referendum and ultimately result
in ‘free and fair’ elections.
However, the regime’s stated
intentions have been contradicted by their actions. Widespread human
rights violations continue, even as the regime attempts to convince
the international community and ethnic nationality groups that they
are sincere about implementing its roadmap to democracy.
While some international observers
feel optimistic about the roadmap, it is important to remember that
without key steps forward, the roadmap resembles a recycling of
excuses and delay tactics previously used by the junta to avoid
acknowledgement of the 1990 general election results.