Oct 7, 2007

Open Letter to Gov. of Burma, China, Japan, India and Thailand

Open Letter to the Governments of Burma, China, Japan, India and Thailand
06 October 2007

We are university lecturers, researchers, policy practitioners, students and activists from 17 countries. We are gathered in Bangkok, Thailand for the International Development Studies Conference on "Mainstreaming Human Security: The Asian Contribution" held on 4-5 October 2007 at Chulalongkorn University.

While human security has been emphasized and used as a reference point in this conference, we realize that our fellows in Burma, which is only next door to Thailand, are crying out for their security. Those monks and civilians who are peacefully demonstrating have a right to have their voice heard. The brutal and violent response by the Burmese government is unacceptable and uncivilized.

Although the demonstrations were triggered by the government's decision to abruptly increase oil prices by 500%, the current discontent in Burma is firmly rooted in the continuing daily hardships ignored by the military dictatorship. We have yet to discover how many civilians and monks have lost their lives during the recent suppression. The hundreds of reported deaths and thousands of forced arrests are alarming and cried out for action above the strong words expressed at the conference this week. These people are fathers, mothers, sons and daughters and they deserve our urgent support. The decision to use violence against peaceful protestors will yield nothing but bloodshed, insecurity and instability inside Burma.

The continuation of brutal violence and repression, military searches, and roundups is happening in front of the eyes of Burma's neighbouring countries, especially China, Japan, India and Thailand. These countries have vast economic interests in Burma's natural resources. Competition among these countries should not overshadow morality and the responsibility each one has towards defending basic human security.

We, the undersigned, urgently call on the Burmese government and its high-ranked officers to:
stop all forms of violence and repression against their own people,
free arrested monks, protestors and political activists, including Aung San Suu Kyi, and
restore a peaceful dialogue with the people in support of Burma's path to democracy.
Moreover, we call on the governments of China, Japan, India and Thailand, whose responses significantly influence the direction of this dire situation, to stand up to their responsibilities and overcome short term economic interests. We urge each of these governments to ensure the safety of our fellow citizens in Burma and to bring pressure on the government of Burma to pursue meaningful dialogue on the path to democracy.

Signed by

1. Abdut Shaban,Tata Institute of Social Science, India
2. Abubakar Kbyttara,International Center for Islam and Democracy, Jakarta Indonesia
3. Alisa Hasamoh,Prince Songkla University,Thailand
4. Andi Amri, Hasanuddin University,Indonesia
5. Bennett Richardson,Waseda University,New Zealand
6. Brennen Jenkins,Chulalongkorn University,Canada
7. Chaiwat Satha-anand,Thammasat University,Thailand
8. Chanchai Chaisukkosol,Chulalongkorn University,Thailand
9. Chandanic Watawak,Mahidol University,Sri Lanka
10. Chantana Banpasirichote,Chulalongkorn University,Thailand
11. Dhani Ram Sapkota,OHRSD, Mahihol University,Nepal
12. Edgardo P Legaspi,Mahidol University,Philippines
13. Eersa Sami Ahoja,HBF,Pakistan
14. Gabrielle GrovesAsian, Institute of Technology,Canada
15. Gaurang R Sahay,Tata Institute of Social Sciences,India
16. Jacques-chai Chomthongdi,Focus on the Global, SouthThailand
17. Jasmin Nario Galace ,Miriam College,Philippines
18. Jessada Salathong,Waseda University,Thailand
19. Kal Elle,Chulalongkorn University,Thailand
20. Ketut Gunawan,Mulawarman University,Indonesia
21. Kinhide Mushakoji,University of Economics and Law, Osaka,Japan
22. Makendra Chalise,Helpless Rehabilitation Society,Nepal
23. Marita Castro Guevara,Ateneo de Manila University,Philippines
24. Mary Racelis,Ateneo de Manila University,Philippines
25. Masaya Sekiguchi,Japan
26. Md. Shanawez Hobbain,Waseda University,Bangladesh
27. Melizel Asuncion,Mahidol University,Philippines
28. Michiko Yoshida,Chulalongkorn University,Thailand/ Japan
29. Mike Hayes,Mahidol University,Thailand
30. Mohiuddin Ahmad,Sungkonghoe University,Bangladesh
31. Motohiko Sato,Aichi University,Japan
32. Muktasam,Research Center for Rural Development,Indonesia
33. Naruemon Arunotai,Chulalongkorn University,Thailand
34. Naruemon Thabchumpon,Chulalongkorn University,Thailand
35. Omar Farouk ,Hiroshima City University,Japan
36. Oscar Gomez,Tokyo University,Japan
37. P Gopinalt,Tata Institute of Social Sciences,India
38. Pakorn Lertsatienchai,Chulalongkorn University,Thailand
39. Passanan Assavarak,KMUTT,Thailand
40. Philippe Dooneys,Canada
41. Pratubjit Neelapaijit,Chulalongkorn University,Thailand
42. Puangthong Pawakapan,Chulalongkorn University,Thailand
43. Ranee Hatsarangsee,Chulalongkorn University,Thailand
44. Ritambhara Hebbar,Tata Institute of Social Science,India
45. Rosalie Arcala Hall,University of the Philippines,Philippines
46. Sajin Prachason,Focus on the Global South,Thailand
47. Saw Aye Min,Chulalongkorn University,Myanmar
48. Suangsurang Lomratanachai,Asian Institute of Technology ,Thailand
49. Surangrut Jumnianpol,Chulalongkorn University,Thailand
50. Surichai Wangaeo,Chulalongkorn University,Thailand
51. Takachi Mita,Japan
52. Tassanee Surawanna,Chulalongkorn University,Thailand
53. Teresa S Encarnacion Tadem,University of the Philippines,Philippines
54. Theera Wanasanpraikhiw,Chulalongkorn University,Thailand
55. Tomoko Nakao,Japan
56. Wayne Nells,Canada
57. Yodha Maharddhika,Gadjah Mada University,Indonesia
58. Yoichi Mine,Osaka University,Japan
59. Yuyyn Wahyuningrun,Mahidol University,Indonesia
60. Zarina Othman,National University of Malaysia,Malaysia

From Prachatai.com

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