London, UK: On the day that marked 60th anniversary of Universal Declaration of Human Rights, about 50 Burmese and British people yesterday braved London cold in front of Burmese Embassy, calling on Burma’s military junta to respect and protect ‘human rights and human dignity.’
The participants including mothers with their babies shouted slogans such as ‘Stop Human Rights Abuses In Burma – Right Now’, ‘Free Political Prisoners – Right Now’, and ‘Free Burma’, showing solidarity and sending strong messages to the UN for taking practical actions on Burma.
“Burma was a signatory to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights but human rights violations have been happening for nearly half a century in Burma. We are sending this message to international communities and to the UN so that practical actions will be taken against the ‘illegitimate’ military regime,” Director of Burma Democratic Concern, Ko Myo Thein, who also sent messages to the Burmese people inside the country that they are not alone but to keep working hard and in unity.
Photos of political prisoners including Aung San Suu Kyi were displayed, placards read such as ‘Rape, torture, murder, slave labour’ and banners with handwritten messages ‘Justice is outlaw; injustice is prevailing everywhere and military regime is always above the law in Burma’ were posted along the street.
A Chin human rights activist, leader and pastor, Shwekey Hoipang from Dai tribe in Southern Chin State, said: “Burma’s military regime from one generation to another violates the fundamental human rights in the country and one of the most suffering ethnic groups includes the Chin people. The military ruthless atrocities include destroying the crosses, burning the churches, and restrictions against religious activities. We want peaceful co-existence and harmony with all other Burmese peoples, and federalism in the country.”
Speakers at the event also included Tony Fairman, Burma Co-ordinator for Amnesty International, U Nwe Aung, Director of Burma Office (UK) and the Representative in Europe of National Council of Union of Burma NCUB, Ko Aung of Burmese Democratic Movement Association, and representatives from Burma Muslim Association and Women of Burma.
The event was jointly organised by Burma Democratic Concern, Burmese Muslim Association, Burmese Democratic Movement Association, Amnesty International (UK) and Burmese community in the UK.
Van Biak Thang
11 December, 2008