From 9am 26th November to 9am 27th November Burmese held a 24 hour hunger strike/fast in Parliament Square, London. Burmese Muslims, Buddhists and Christians all held prayer services for political prisoners in Burma. The brutal Burmese military dictatorship has recently sentenced student leaders and democracy activists to 65 years in prison. The Burmese were calling on UN General Secretary Ban Ki-moon to visit Burma in December.
The event was sponsored by the NLD-LA UK ( www.nld-la.org.
Sadly, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has just said he won't even visit Burma, despite being invited by the regime and a December visit being suggested for months.
The military junta in Burma has sentenced at least 215 political activists, monks, nuns and journalists during November, bringing the total number of political prisoners sentenced since last year's uprising to at least 384.
• Activist and famous comedian Zarganar, who had been organising relief supplies to survivors of Cyclone Nargis, received sentences totalling 59 years.
• Prominent Buddhist monk U Gambira, leader of the All Burma Monks' Alliance, who played a leading role in last year's Saffron Revolution, was given sentences totalling 68 years.
• Twenty-three members of the 88 Generation Students Group, who led the protests against fuel price hikes in August last year, including Min Ko Naing, were given sentences of at least 65 years each.
Ban says he won't go to Burma because there has been no progress, but it is his job to ensure progress happens. He won't bring change to Burma sitting behind a desk in New York. He must go to Burma and negotiate change, including the release of all political prisoners.
On 10th December the UN will be celebrating the 60th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The declaration proclaims "the advent of a world in which human beings shall enjoy freedom of speech and belief and freedom from fear and want has been proclaimed as the highest aspiration of the common people." Surely the best way to celebrate the declaration would be for UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon to visit Burma and at least try to obtain the release of Burmese political prisoners.
TAKE ACTION: please fax/email Ban Ki-moon asking him not to abandon Burma's brave democracy activists to spend the rest of their lives in jail.
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40 Burmese Dissidents Given Prison Terms of up to 65 Years
Burmese Online Petition Request for Release of Political Prisoners in Burma
LETTER FROM 112 FORMER PRESIDENTS AND PRIME MINISTERS OF MORE THAN 50 NATIONS SENT TO UN SECRETARY-GENER
More Photos of 24 hour hunger strike/fast for political prisoners event:
Full Article on Indymedia with more photos