Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Glastonbury Festival: Little Burmese Tea Shop

Democracy activists from Burma will have a tea stall in the The Green Futures Field at the Glastonbury Music Festival called the "Little Burmese Tea Shop". Tea shops are an intrinsic part of Burmese life - people meet in tea shops throughout the country to speak in hushed tones of the political situation in Burma.

At Glastonbury 2008, the Little Burmese Tea Shop will be focussing on the issue of political prisoners in Burma. Our campaign - to raise awareness on the plight of Burmese political prisoners, and to pressure the military junta to release them - is part of a wider campaign organised by the Assistance Association for Political Prisoners for Burma (AAPPB). AAPPB provide valuable and very risky support to political prisoners inside prison, through low profile provision of materials and financial support to their families; enabling the families to visit prisoners who are held far from their loved ones. The stall holders at Glastonbury 2008 are all former political prisoners, and are on hand to speak with visitors to the Tea Shop. Funds raised at the Tea Shop will go to supporting victims of cyclone Nargis which struck Burma in May 2008.

The Tea Shop is also bringing 2 speakers to the Speakers Forum (Friday 15.30 and Sunday morning). Our speakers are Dr Saing and Zaw Zaw Aung. Dr Saing is a medical practitioner who is a long standing political activist in Burma. Arrested in 1974 for political activities as a student, he served 7 years in Insein prison, of which several were in solitary confinement, and during which time he was tortured. After release Dr Saing became active again during the 1988 uprising in Burma, for which he was again imprisoned, serving 7 years of his 20 year sentence. He fled to the UK in Oct 2007, and currently works with Amnesty International. Dr Saing will speak on recent events in Burma, including the monk’s protests of 2007, the recent rewriting of the constitution, as well as his own personal experiences as an activist.

Zaw Zaw Aung was a senior figure in the student body that organised the 1988 uprisings. For this activism he was arrested and served as a political prisoner for 14 years (out of a 20 year sentence) in various prisons across Burma, including several years in solitary confinement. Since his release he has played an important role in supporting former political prisoners in both social welfare and on HIV. He also became very significantly active in a new underground political movement inside Burma, called the ‘88 Students Generation’ (people who were key players in the 1988 uprising, have been political prisoners, and are struggling for genuine tripartite dialogue and national reconciliation).




Monday, June 23, 2008

Virginia Water Totalitarian Oil Protest

Three protesters demonstrated at the Wheatsheaf Total Station at Virginia Water, Surrey GU25 4QE on 20th June. They were there due to the large amount of traffic attending Royal Ascot that passes this station, with many a stretch-limousine filling up.

Despite there not being many pedestrians, we were able to leaflet many cars passing by and leaving the station, most of whom were unaware of French Total Oil being the largest western supporter of the brutal Burma junta, funding them with 500 million dollars. Money that does not benefit the Burmese people but funds the military in a war against the Burma people.

Aung San Suu Kyi Birthday Protest

Aung San Suu Kyi's Birthday demo

Aung San Suu Kyi's Birthday demo

From Indymedia:

The Burmese community and Burma Campaign UK marked Burma's democracy leader, Aung San Suu Kyi 63rd birthday on 19th June with a protest at the Burma Embassy in London. The Prime Minister Gordon Brown later met a delegation of young women from 5 of Burma’s main ethnic nationalities, Burman, Kachin, Karen, Karenni, and Chin, demonstrating the unity of the people of Burma in their struggle against dictatorship.

Gordon Brown and French President Nicolas Sarkozy have called for immediate democratic reform in Burma, and the release of pro-democracy activist Aung San Suu Kyi.

In a joint letter to Aung San Suu Kyi to mark her birthday, the two leaders praised the leader of the National League for Democracy for her exceptional courage and dedication to the Burmese people. Read the letter:


See full article and more photos on Indymedia

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Aung San Suu Kyi's 63rd Birthday

On June 19th 2008, Burma's democracy leader, Aung San Suu Kyi, will celebrate her 63rd birthday. She will spend her birthday alone, under house arrest. She is now in her 13th year of detention. She isn't allowed to see family or friends as all visitors are banned. Her phone line is cut and her post is intercepted.

Aung San Suu Kyi is now serving her third term of house arrest. She was arrested on 30 May, 2003 after the regime's militia attacked her convoy and killed up to 100 of her supporters.

On the day that Aung Sang Suu Kyi celebrates her 63rd birthday alone, the Burmese community and Burma Campaign UK will protest outside the Burmese embassy to highlight her continued detention.

Thursday June 19th - Aung San Suu Kyi's Birthday
2:00-3pm Thursday
Myanmar/Burma Embassy 19A, Charles St, London W1J 5DX.
Tube: Green Park | Map: http://preview.tinyurl.com/2vnnbh
[Check http://www.bdmauk.org for any changes as times may change]

[Note: This will replace totaloutofburma.org's normal Wednesday protest at the Embassy and Cavendish Square]

Friday June 20th - Total Station Protest
9:15am to 5pm
Virginia Water, Wheatsheaf Service Station
London Road, Virginia Water, Surrey GU25 4QE
Getting there from London by bus:
London Hounslow to Staines: Hounslow, Bell Road / Bell Corner Stop X Take London Bus 203 to Staines, Elmsleigh Bus Station Stand 5 (46 mins)
Staines to Virginia Water, Wheatsheaf: Elmsleigh Bus Station Stand 3 Dicksons Travel Bus 500 towards Frimley Park, Frimley Park Hospital and get off at Virginia Water, Wheatsheaf (SW-Bound) (13 mins)
Plan other routes via: http://www.travelinesoutheast.org.uk (buses, trains, underground and coaches, postcode to postcode)
Google Map of Wheatsheaf Service Station : http://preview.tinyurl.com/4unwg3

Saturday June 21st Aung San Suu Kyi's Birthday Celebrations

Celebrate Aung San Suu Kyi's birthday with Burmese community in a multinational, traditional & cultural event . Entertainment and Burmese food being served available.

Date: Saturday 21st June
Time 1800- 2200.
Location St. Matthias Parish Hall, St Matthias Close, Rush Grove Avenue, Colindale, NW9 6EN.
Map: http://preview.tinyurl.com/5qgow5

Tube-Colindale, Northern Line
Bus- 83.183.
Walk: 20 mins from Colindale Station