New Action Alerts on Burma :)

Don’t Let the World Forget: UN Must Act Now!
Don’t Let the World Forget About the Saffron Revolution
Dear james m,
 
 
This Wednesday, October 24th, is an important day for Burma. It is: 1)
United Nations Day, 2) The day when Aung San Suu Kyi will have been under
house arrest for a total of 12 years, and 3) One month since the uprisings
in Burma were at their peak.
 
We will be marking this day with a host of actions around the world.
 
– Several organizations are working together to organize in 12 cities around
the world.  At 12 noon, demonstrators dressed in white (as political
prisoners are forced to wear inside Burma) will gather in front of Chinese
embassies. Please let us know if you want to participate in the
demonstration in Washington, DC.
 
–  A group of Burmese monks and exiles have been marching from Albany, NY to
the United Nations in a peace walk. On Wednesday, please join with them as
they continue their march from the Burmese regime’s Mission in New York to
the United Nations from 10-11 am. The Mission is located on 10E and 77th St.
For more info, the cell phone for the peace walk is (518) 605-8506.
 
– For those of you who cannot participate in these actions we are asking you
to ensure that the American public does not forget Burma. We are asking you
on this day to reinvigorate public attention by writing an op-ed article for
your local newspaper, write a post on your blog or facebook profile, host a
teach in for your friends and neighbors, or for more suggestions visit our
action page
 
The Burmese regime may be the jailer of Aung San Suu Kyi and thousands of
other prisoners, but China holds the key to her release. The United Nations
Security Council (of which China is a member) must act urgently as more and
more people are being hunted down, arrested and tortured. China must not
block Security Council action. We will show that we will not allow Burma’s
regime to hide its abuses from the world.. The United Nations Security
Council needs to pass  a global arms embargo now!
 
-Thelma Young
 
Support 1991 Nobel Peace Prize recipient Aung San Suu Kyi and the struggle
for freedom and democracy in Burma.
Become a member of the United States Campaign for Burma today.
 
 
 
 
 
PEN: Freedom to Write Program: MYAN: send an appeal letter
Dear Friends,
 
We received this news today about Zargana’s release. Thanks to those of you
who wrote letters last week. Please note that, according to reports, U Par
Par Lay is still detained. If you have not yet sent an appeal letter, please
send one on his behalf.
 
Thank you!
 
Best,
Anna Kushner
Freedom to Write Program Coordinator
PEN American Center
588 Broadway, Suite 303
New York, NY 10012
(212) 334-1660 ext. 106
anna@pen.org
 
From: Sara Whyatt [mailto:Sara.Whyatt@internationalpen.org.uk]
Sent: Thursday, October 18, 2007 9:34 AM
To: Cathy McCann
Subject: MYANMAR (BURMA): Leading comedian and poet Zargana released.
 
INTERNATIONAL PEN WRITERS IN PRISON COMMITTEE
 
RAPID ACTION NETWORK
 
18 October 2007
 
Update #1 to RAN 36/07
 
MYANMAR (BURMA): Leading comedian and poet Zargana released.
 
The Writers in Prison Committee of International PEN welcomes the
release of poet and comedian Zargana, who is said to be well though
exhausted after his three-week detention. Zargana is among many
pro-democracy activists reported to have been arrested in the ongoing
government crackdown in Burma, including fellow comedian U Par Par Lay,
who is believed to remain detained.  International PEN reiterates its
concern for the safety of Burmese writers and that their works continue
to be censored. PEN calls for the immediate and unconditional release of
all those currently detained in Myanmar in violation of Article 19 of
the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
 
According to PEN’s information, Maung Thura (‘Zargana’) is a leading
comedian, poet and opposition activist was arrested on 25 September 2007
for his support of the monks demonstrating in the capital, Rangoon. His
release was reported on 18 October 2007, although he remains under heavy
surveillance and restriction, as he has been for many years.  For
further information see the following link:
 
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/asia-pacific/7050018.stm. Also for an
informative article on his case and on censorship of Burmese writings in
general go to
http://books.guardian.co.uk/poetry/features/0,,2189772,00.html
 
Maung Thura, more commonly known by his nick-name ‘Zargana’, is Burma’s
leading comedian, popular for his political satires. Zargana spent
several years in prison in the early 1990s for his opposition
activities. During that time he was taken up as a main case by the
Writers in Prison Committee of International PEN. Zargana, whose
pseudonym means ‘tweezers’ and refers to his years spent training as a
dentist, was first arrested in October 1988 after making fun of the
government, but freed six months later. However, on 19 May 1990, he
impersonated General Saw Maung, former head of the military government,
to a crowd of thousands at the Yankin Teacher’s Training College Stadium
in Rangoon. He was arrested shortly afterwards, and sentenced to five
years in prison. He was held in solitary confinement in a tiny cell in
Rangoon’s Insein Prison, where he began writing poetry. One of his
prison poems was published in the International PEN anthology This
Prison Where I Live.
 
After his release from prison in March 1994, Zargana was banned from
performing in public, but continued to make tapes and videos which were
strictly censored by the authorities. In May 1996, after speaking out
against censorship to a foreign journalist, he was banned from
performing his work altogether, and stripped of his freedom to write and
publish.
 
Appeals to Myanmar (Burma) Embassies:
 
While the situation in Burma is still critical, letters sent to the
country may not be received or taken as a priority. It is therefore
recommended that appeals be sent to the diplomatic representative of
Myanmar (Burma) in your own country.
 
– welcoming the release of writer, comedian and pro-democracy activist
Zargana, but reiterating grave concern for the well-being of other
writers still detained in Burma, including comedian U Par Par Lay;
 
– demanding the immediate and unconditional release of all those
currently detained in Myanmar in violation of Article 19 of the United
Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
 
Letters to the press
 
PEN members may consider writing letters to their national newspapers
expressing alarm at events in Burma, and highlighting Zargana’s case to
illustrate the many years of repression in the country.
 
For further information please contact Cathy McCann at International PEN
Writers in Prison Committee, Brownlow House, 50/51 High Holborn, London
WC1V 6ER, Tel.+ 44 (0) 20 7405 0338, Fax: +44 (0) 20 7405 0339, email:
cathy.mccann@internationalpen.org.uk
 
Sara Whyatt
Programme Director
Writers in Prison Committee
International PEN
Brownlow House
50/51 High Holborn
London WC1V 6ER
UK
Tel: + 44 (0) 20 7405 0338
Fax: + ff (0) 20 7405 0339
Email: sara.whyatt@internationalpen.org.uk
 
 
 
 
 
Help Us Tell the UN Sec. General to Demand End to Torture in Burma
Ban Ki-moon: Telephone The Burmese Regime Today to Demand End to Ongoing
Torture in Burma
Dear James,
 
The  military continues to hunt down those who have participated in peaceful
demonstrations. We are calling on you to take a few moments today to be part
of the global voice calling for an end to the abuse of monks and civilians
arrested.
 
 
This past weekend the military captured 4 promiment democracy  activists,
including Htay Kywe, one of the last remaining leaders of the 88  Student
Generation that had not been captured. The 88 Student Generation has been at
the forefront of  organizing protests, with the  courage to stand up to the
ruthless and brutal regime no matter the cost.  Htay Kywe had evaded  arrest
until now.  During the  past two months, he was vital in educating the world
about what  was happening inside Burma.  We are deeply  concerned about his
health and  safety.
 
Also arrested was Mee Mee, whose picture with her fist in the air, has
become an iconic symbol of the Burmese people during  the protests in
August and September (as seen above). We fear for her and the suffering she
will most likely endure, as a political prisoner and as a woman.
 
The few remaining members of the 88 Student Generation have already sent a
letter to Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon urging him to take action to protect
prisoners, and stop arrests, and we must support their call.
 
 
It  is more than just these arrests that concern us. Thousands of monks and
civilians have been arrested in the past 2 weeks and we are receiving
disturbing  reports about the treatment of these prisoners. Torture, denying
medical  treatment and food, disrobing monks, and even death are regular
occurrences  for those imprisoned. We are deeply concerned for the fate of
those  imprisoned. Many activists have serious medical problems because of
their previous imprisonments. For a list of  monasteries raided, people
arrested, disappeared, and killed, go to the AAPP  website (Assistance
Association for the Political Prisoners of Burma) www.aappb.org .
 
Please just take a few moments today to send an email to UN Secretary
General Ban Ki-Moon, urging him to take more  concrete measures to ensure
that the brutal treatment of prisoners stops. He needs to pick up the phone
today and demand from the Burmese Generals that the arrests and torturing of
political prisoners stops. He must make it a personal priority to  call
Burma’s  generals, to demand that the International Committee for the  Red
Cross (ICRC)  or other organizations can at least have access to the
prisoners and to push for the release of  all political prisoners.
 
-Thelma Young
 
Support 1991 Nobel Peace Prize recipient Aung San Suu Kyi and the struggle
for freedom and democracy in Burma.
Become a member of the United States Campaign for Burma today.
 
 
 
 
 
F.O.E.I.: [Cyberaction] Support Burmese protesters
[Cyberaction] Support Burmese protesters
Dear Friends
 
The world is watching as the people of Burma are struggling against military
dictatorship.
 
 
In the Philippines, workers shaved their heads in a gesture of solidarity
with the Burmese Buddhist monks, who are bearing the brunt of the crackdown.
 
As environmentalists, we should all be concerned and take action to support
the monks who were demonstrating against rising fuel and food prices that
left many in Burma without access to public transport and unable to feed
their families.
Please take a minute to sign the petition that will be sent to the UN,
asking them to take urgent action to safeguard the rights of the people of
Burma.
 
Please spread the word, pass this message on to everyone you know and
encourage them to do the same.
 
Thanks for your support.
 
Debra Broughton
Friends of the Earth International
 
 
 
 
 
 
H.R.W.: Burma: Foreign Investment Finances Regime
Burma: Foreign Investment Finances Regime
Companies Should Condemn Crackdown
 
(New York, October 2, 2007) – Chinese, Indian, Thai, and other
companies doing business in Burma should ensure their operations do not
contribute to or benefit from human rights abuses, Human Rights Watch
said today. The military government in Burma has launched a violent
crackdown on peaceful demonstrators that so far has led to many deaths,
enforced disappearances, and mass arbitrary arrests.
 
"Companies doing business in Burma argue their presence is constructive
and will benefit the Burmese people, but they have yet to condemn the
government’s abuses against its own citizens," said Arvind Ganesan,
director of the Business and Human Rights Program at Human Rights
Watch. "Keeping quiet while monks and other peaceful protesters are
murdered and jailed is not evidence of constructive engagement."
 
Human Rights Watch said that companies operating in Burma should use
their influence with the ruling State Peace and Development Council
(SPDC) to put an end to ongoing human rights abuses. In the current
environment, companies should urge the SPDC to halt the crackdown,
release all political prisoners, and open a real dialogue with opposition
and ethnic groups. If the situation does not improve, companies should
be prepared to reconsider their operations in the country.
 
Human Rights Watch said that there is no transparency in Burma about
how much the government receives in oil and gas payments, nor clarity
about how the funds are spent. The military receives the largest share of
the official budget and the SPDC allocates only a pittance to social
programs including health and education.
 
Foreign investment in Burma’s oil and natural gas sector is especially
significant. Sales of natural gas account for the single largest source of
 
revenue to the military government. Gas exports accounted for fully half
of the country’s exports in 2006. Burma’s gas business brought in
revenue of US$2.16 billion in 2006 from sales to its main buyer,
Thailand. These funds flow directly to the government and provide the
junta with a major source of financing that is completely independent of
its citizens.
 
Current investors in Burma’s oil and gas industry include companies
from Australia, the British Virgin Islands, China, France, India, Japan,
Malaysia, Singapore, South Korea, Thailand, Russia, and the United
States.
 
The SPDC has greatly expanded investment in Burma’s oil and natural
gas industry in recent years. Allowing foreign investment in oil and gas
is apparently aimed at bringing in more revenue to keep the government
afloat at a time when economic mismanagement and profligate spending
on the military and the building of a new capital at Nay Pyi Taw have
drained government finances. Natural gas exploration, development and
production projects are under way in approximately 30 different gas
fields. These projects are organized as joint ventures with the Burmese
government’s Myanmar Oil and Gas Enterprise (MOGE).
 
"Outside investment in Burma’s oil and gas industry has thrown a lifeline
to the country’s brutal rulers," added Ganesan. "The businesses that help
finance the military shouldn’t argue that the government’s crackdown is
not their problem."
 
Details of the Deals
 
At present the SPDC receives the bulk of its gas money from the onshore
"Yadana" and "Yetagun" gas fields. The Yadana consortium is led by
Total of France and includes UNOCAL (now Chevron) of the United
States and Thailand’s state-controlled PTT Exploration and Production
Co Ltd (PTTEP). The Yetagun consortium, led by Malaysia’s state-
owned Petronas, includes Japan’s Nippon Oil as well as PTTEP. PTTEP,
a subsidiary of the largely state-owned PTT Public Co Ltd (PTT) of
Thailand, buys the gas for export to Thailand.
 
Major offshore natural gas projects are under development. A consortium
of South Korean and Indian firms, in partnership with the Myanmar Oil
and Gas Enterprise, has made a large gas find off the coast of Arakan
State in western Burma. Known as the "Shwe" gas project, it is expected
to produce massive revenues once it is in production. Estimates of the
gas yield of the Shwe deposits range between US$37 to US$52 billion,
and could lead to a total gain in revenues to the junta or future Burmese
governments of US$12 to US$17 billion over 20 years.
 
The Shwe gas consortium is composed of the South Korean company
Daewoo International, state-owned companies from India and South
Korea, and the Myanmar Oil and Gas Enterprise. Some of the foreign
partners also have separate deals with the Burmese government entity for
other concessions.
 
On September 24, for example, India’s state-controlled Oil and Natural
Gas Co (ONGC), whose subsidiary ONGC Videsh is a partner in the
Shwe consortium, signed a deal with Myanmar Oil and Gas Enterprise to
explore for gas in three more offshore blocks. Under the deal, Oil and
Natural Gas Co pledged to invest US$150 million through ONGC
Videsh.
 
India’s Office of the President holds nearly 75 percent of the shares in
Oil and Natural Gas Co. India’s minister for oil, Murli Deora, traveled to
 
the Burmese capital last week to sign the agreement as thousands of
protesters in Burma took to the streets to call for political freedom, an
end to the SPDC’s abuses, and economic improvements.
 
India, like China and Russia – which are also major investors in Burma’s
 
natural gas sector – has provided political and military support to the
SPDC. India and China are in competition to buy the Shwe gas. In
August, a top Burmese energy official publicly confirmed that China was
strongly favored to buy the gas, but indicated that a sales agreement was
not yet final.
 
Chinese firms are also actively seeking to build oil and gas pipelines in
Burma. One proposed pipeline would transport gas from the offshore
Shwe project to China. A second pipeline would carry Middle Eastern oil
across Burma into China, bypassing the busy shipping lanes of the Straits
of Malacca. These proposals to build overland pipelines across Burma
have raised serious human rights concerns, in light of past experience.
Major controversies arose in the 1990s over construction of pipelines and
associated infrastructure to transport Yadana-Yetagun gas. UNOCAL
and Total were sued in the US and France, respectively, by Burmese
villagers who accused them of complicity in atrocities by the Burmese
army during operations to remove villagers from areas slated for
development and to facilitate pipeline construction. The companies
ultimately settled the lawsuits.
 
Two Chinese companies that have shown strong interest in the proposed
new Burma-China pipeline projects are Sinopec and China National
Petroleum Corporation (CNPC). Both are Chinese state-owned oil
companies and are involved in gas exploration in Burma as well. They
also are official "partners" (major sponsors) of the 2008 Olympics in
Beijing and are under increased scrutiny for the human-rights impact of
their investments in Sudan and Burma.
 
India and China have been reluctant to criticize the recent crackdown.
Russia joined China in blocking UN Security Council action on Burma.
 
In addition to foreign investors (both state-owned and private), the
companies doing business with Burma include banks that arrange
financial transactions and companies that import products from Burma.
For example, timber exports to China have been substantial. The SPDC
also draws significant revenue from sales of gems, notably rubies and
jade. These gems are polished in third countries and then find their way
to retail stores in Europe and the US, where sanctions permit imports of
Burmese-origin goods that are processed in third countries.
 
The US has imposed new financial sanctions, intended to target overseas
accounts of Burmese generals, and some European leaders have called
for additional, targeted sanctions if the SPDC fails to halt its violent
repression of dissent.
 
"The junta’s largest trading partners should insist that Burma’s rulers
stop stuffing their own pockets and instead use these immense revenues
to improve the lives of ordinary Burmese," said Ganesan.
 
For more of Human Rights Watch’s work on Burma, please visit:
http://www.hrw.org/doc?t=asia&c=burma
 
———–
Please help support the research that made this bulletin possible. In
 order
to protect our objectivity, Human Rights Watch does not accept funding
 from
any government. We depend entirely on the generosity of people like you.
To make a contribution, please visit http://hrw.kintera.org/donate3
 
Forward to Friend:
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
A.I.: Stand with the monks in Burma
Stand with the monks in Burma
Dear james m,
 
I’m sure you’ve seen the inspiring – and terrifying – pictures of red-robed
monks facing down heavily armed military police in the streets of Burma
(Myanmar) this past week.
 
 
Their courage in the face of brutal repression – in the fight for human
rights – is what Amnesty International is all about. While you and I live
far away from Burma, we can help the brave pro-democracy forces there
through our support of Amnesty International.
 
As I write this, Amnesty activists in more than 20 countries are taking part
in demonstrations and meetings with government leaders, designed to pressure
the military rulers of Burma, and its key allies China and India, to stop
the violence and restore human rights. Amnesty has been working on Burma for
decades to free hundreds of pro-democracy activists, including Nobel
laureate Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, from long prison sentences for nothing more
than acts of peaceful dissent.
 
Now is the time for you to make an additional gift to Amnesty International
USA to show your solidarity with the people of Burma – and the people in
dozens of other countries whose human rights are being trampled upon.
 
 
As we end our Fall membership drive at midnight tonight, please make a gift
to Amnesty International to help us keep up international pressure on the
brutal military regime in Burma.
 
Please join us in standing side by side with the peaceful red-robed forces
for democracy and human rights.
 
 Sincerely,
 
Larry Cox
Executive Director
Amnesty International USA
 
© Copyright 2007Amnesty International USA5 Penn PlazaNew York, NY
10001212.807.8400
 
 
 
 
 
Other linx for Burma  🙂
 
Myanmar: Time for Urgent Action – New Crisis Group media release
Contacts: Andrew Stroehlein (Brussels) 32 (0) 2 541 1635
Giulia Previti (Washington) 1 202 785 1601
To contact Crisis Group media please click here
http://www.crisisgroup.org
 
WITNESS: Stand with Burma’s Brave Citizens – Demand UN Security Council
Action
http://www.democracyinaction.org/dia/organizationsORG/witness/campaign.jsp?campaign_KEY=12937
 
Get Involved in the Struggle to Free Burma  🙂
 
 
 
 
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About reality

Also, thanx for signing my petitions, et al, please consider sharing them. Also, since Admin. of change.org aren't allowing me to invite people to do my actions lately and are switching my urls for my petitions so when I invite people off their site they can't get to the petition either (ergo 3 possible urls for each petition), here's a few of my latest actions; do as few or as many as you'd like (there are 3 linx for each petition because admin. switches between the 3 of them so people trying to sign the petition can‘t get to it): This post on Disabled Greens News and discussion: Haiti disaster anniversary, please, do what you can: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/DisabledGreensNews/message/9033 This petition on change.org: Haiti disaster anniversary: http://www.change.org/petitions/view/haiti_disaster_anniversary_2?share_id=yIpWHEHxri&pe=pce http://uspoverty.change.org/petitions/view/haiti_disaster_anniversary_2 http://www.change.org/petitions/view/haiti_disaster_anniversary_2   This post on Disabled Greens News and discussion: Green, Indigenous, Native American, etc., actions: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/DisabledGreensNews/message/9026 This petition on change.org: Green, Indigenous, Native American, acts: http://www.change.org/petitions/view/green_indigenous_native_american_acts?share_id=NHvTtQadfP&pe=pce http://uspoverty.change.org/petitions/view/green_indigenous,_native_american_acts http://www.change.org/petitions/view/green_indigenous,_native_american_acts   This post on Disabled Greens News and discussion: Art/Act: celebrate Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s birthday, holiday: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/DisabledGreensNews/message/9024 This petition on change.org: Art/Act: celebrate Dr. M.L. King, Jr.'s holiday: http://www.change.org/petitions/view/artact_celebrate_dr_ml_king_jrs_holiday?share_id=QjOkAUGeBQ&pe=pce http://uspoverty.change.org/petitions/view/art_act_celebrate_dr_ml_king_jr_s_holiday http://www.change.org/petitions/view/art_act_celebrate_dr_ml_king_jr_s_holiday   This post on Disabled Greens News and discussion: Green; NA; the evolution; Civil, Human, LP, Prisoner's Rights; Poverty; etc..: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/DisabledGreensNews/message/9022 This petition on change.org: Economically empower through advocacy: http://www.change.org/petitions/view/economically_empower_through_advocacy?share_id=WZNqBQWcXE&pe=pce http://uspoverty.change.org/petitions/view/economically_empower_through_advocacy http://www.change.org/petitions/view/economically_empower_throug
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