TL NGO statement in solidarity with Burma

Joint Statement

Timor-Leste NGOs in Solidarity of Peaceful
Demonstrations Led by Buddhist Monks in Burma –
Urging Government to Enter into Dialogue

We, representatives of Timor-Leste Human Rights
NGOs express our deepest solidarity in the spirit
of human rights with the peaceful and holy
movement initiated by Buddhist Monks and joined
by many Burmese citizens, who have been holding
peaceful demonstrations exercising their right to
freedom of opinion and expression for several
days now in different places in the country.

We are very concerned about media reports that
the Government has now used force in response to
the demonstrations, that demonstrators have been
beaten and that two persons might have been
killed. We strongly condemn this brutal crackdown
to stop this peaceful demonstration and urge the
Government to enter into dialogue with its
population, and to allow the UN Special Envoy
immediate and free access to the country.

We support statements by the UN as well as the
international community including the Timor-Leste
Government strongly condemning the violence in
Burma. We appeal to ASEAN and the Chinese
Government, to intervene in whatever manner
possible, to urge the Burmese government to show
utmost restraint and avoid the recurrence of the
pain and suffering resulting from its actions in
1988, now almost 20 years ago. We call on ASEAN
and all its members, in the true spirit of being
an association of nations, to act immediately and
not to consider the recent development in Burma
as Burma´s internal matter only.

The current events in Burma remind us, Timorese,
starkly of the struggle for human rights we went
through in our recent history. We never forget
the international solidarity shown in the past
around the world for the plight of the Timorese.
We know that the use of violence and oppression
never leads to genuine lasting stability and
peace. The voices of the Burmese people urgently
need to be heard. We therefore appeal to the
Burmese government to immediately release the
leader of the National League for Democracy, Daw
Aung San Suu Kyi and engage in talks with a view
to ultimately finding a long-term solution to the
important issues Burma is facing today, and that is just for all its people.

Timor-Leste, 27 September 2007

For release and for further information
Contact: Joao Pequinho (Hp. (+670) 724 2099)

This statement has been signed by:

La’o Hamutuk – The Timor-Leste Institute for
Reconstruction Monitoring and Analysis
East Timor Reflection Network (ETCRN)
Grupo Feto Foinsae Timor Leste (GFFTL)
Judicial System Monitoring Program (JSMP)
East Timor Insight – Research Laboratory
Konfederasaun Sindikatu Timor-Leste (KSTL)
Alola Foundation
KATILOSA – Disability Support Program
HAK Association
Pat Walsh (Individual)
Rogerio Vicente (individual)
Amelia de Araujo (individual).

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