For weeks now, the world has been praising Burma’s steps toward democracy. And certainly the recent election of Nobel Peace Laureate Aung San Suu Kyi to parliament warrants celebration. This forward momentum should be encouraged.
But things are a long way from ok in Burma — I know, I was there. Hundreds of political prisoners are still behind bars and the Burmese military continues to commit atrocious human rights violations predominantly in Burma’s ethnic areas.
Right now the army is attacking villages in Kachin State, displacing people from their homes and destroying houses and crops. It is no coincidence that this area is rich in natural resources which foreign businesses can’t wait to exploit. No matter what the headlines proclaim, things are bad in Burma right now and the people of Burma need your help.
That’s why Congress needs to renew the Burmese Freedom and Democracy Act to keep sanctions in place until the Burmese government can show a lot more progress toward a permanent end to human rights abuses.
The Burmese Freedom and Democracy Act prohibits products made in Burma from being imported into the United States. It will deny hundreds of millions of dollars from getting into the hands of Burma’s military which is deeply involved in the entire Burmese economy.
Please tell your representative not to lift economic sanctions until innocent Burmese women, children and men are not in danger at the hands of their own military.
Aung San Suu Kyi, one of Burma’s strongest voices for democracy, has advocated caution — she has stressed that the democratization process in Burma is not irreversible. If the sanctions are lifted, as they are set to do in July without your action, it will reward the Burmese military and its cronies.
Lifting sanctions now would be devastating for the people of Burma because sanctions are the only leverage the United States has to encourage the major changes that still need to take place. Please contact your representative right now and help us speak out for the people of Burma.
Thank you so much for your help.
United to End Genocide
ABOUT UNITED TO END GENOCIDE We are United to End Genocide, the largest activist organization in America dedicated to preventing and ending genocide and mass atrocities worldwide. We are faith leaders, students, artists, investors and genocide survivors, and all those who believe we must fulfill the promise the world made following the Holocaust — "Never Again!"