April 28, 2010

Responding to media reports that Burmese Prime Minister Thein Sein and around 20 other military officers in government positions have resigned their military ranks, Burma Campaign UK described this as the beginning of the transition of Burma from a military to civilian dictatorship.

Since it was announced in 2003, Burma Campaign UK has been warning that the generals’ so-called road map to democracy is a sham aimed at maintaining dictatorship. The entire process is designed to ensure the corrupt military and business elite maintain power and control over Burma and its natural resources. At the same time, it is meant to ensure a safe and comfortable retirement for aging generals, while a new generation of dictators take control.

“Burma’s military are already guaranteed 25 percent of seats in Parliament, but also plan to pack Parliament with soldiers wearing suits, in order to ensure their complete dominance in the new system.” said Mark Farmaner, Director of Burma Campaign UK. “After their defeat in elections in 1990 the generals are leaving nothing to chance. The new Parliament will be a rubber stamp one, but they are still ensuring they completely control it. The only real change after the election will be a few hundred men wearing suits instead of uniforms.”

Burma Campaign UK is calling on the UN, EU and others to stop trying to reform the generals’ roadmap and elections, which has been the main focus of their diplomatic efforts for the past seven years, and instead focus on what they have said should happen, which is tri-partite dialogue between the generals, Aung San Suu Kyi and the NLD, and genuine ethnic representatives.

For more information contact Mark Farmaner on 020 7324 4710


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