By Brad Adams, London, edited by The Nation, October 25, 2006 – The Security Council must act further on the human rights situation of a country where violence and repression from the military are an everyday fact of life. Burma has finally arrived on the formal agenda of the UN Security Council. On September 30, the Council held its third briefing on the dire human rights situation in Burma, with member states voting 10-4 (with one abstention) to continue the discussion. This process began in 2005, when a report commissioned by Vaclav Havel and Bishop Desmond Tutu, called “Threat to the Peace: A Call for UN Security Council Action on Burma”, advocated increased Council action to address Burma.
This has become one of the most serious international efforts facing the generals who run the country with brutality and an iron fist, and comes after years in which the State Peace and Development Council (SPDC) ignored repeated General Assembly and Commission on Human Rights resolutions condemning systemic rights violations.
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The Security Council should not wait any longer before acting. It should approve a resolution that will make clear the need to rapidly begin a genuine process towards civilian rule and democracy. Recently arrested political activists and other political prisoners must be released. Military offensives against ethnic minority populations must also cease. Humanitarian aid agencies must be permitted unfettered access to parts of the country where poor military governance has degraded the health conditions of the population, and forced labour and sexual violence are widespread. The generals must get the message that they can no longer remain intransigent with the support of China and other neighbours. Brad Adams is Asia director of New York-based Human Rights Watch. Read the whole long article on above link.