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Monday, 22 June 2009
Page: 6802

Debate resumed from 27 May, on motion by Ms Saffin:

That the House:

(1)   note that:

(a)   27 May is the 19th anniversary of the National League for Democracy’s (NLD) overwhelming election victory in Burma’s first democratically held elections in many decades; and

(b)   the NLD is led by General Secretary and Nobel Peace Laureate Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, Burma’s highly regarded and respected political leader, both in her own country and internationally;

(2)   condemns the State Peace and Development Council led by General Than Shwe, for not honouring the 1990 election, which violates both domestic and international law and norms;

(3)   notes with deep concern that Daw Aung San Suu Kyi and U Tin Oo were detained, following an assassination attempt on their lives on 30 May 2003, being charged under the Orwellian sounding law, The Law to Safeguard the State Against the Dangers of Those Desiring to Cause Subversive Acts 1975, also called the State Protection Act, and that their sentences have both been increased, extra legally;

(4)   condemns:

(a)   General Than Shwe for the above incident and the continued unlawful incarceration, which the United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detention has issued Opinions findings in both cases that the deprivation of their liberty is arbitrary, inter alia; and

(b)   General Than Shwe’s actions for orchestrating the current trumped up charges, against Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, and her companions Daw Khin Khin Win and Daw Win Ma Ma;

(5)   calls upon General Than Shwe to:

(a)   immediately and unconditionally release political prisoner Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, her companions Daw Khin Khin Win and Daw Win Ma Ma and her fellow political prisoners, including NLD Executive Members U Tin Oo and U Win Htein, and Shan Nationalities League for Democracy Leader Hkun Htun Oo, and up to the 2,000 others reported, according to Amnesty International; and

(b)   do the right thing and enter into talks with all parties so that the national reconciliation that has evaded Burma’s people, including the large population of ethnic nationalities, can begin to take place; and

(6)   notes:

(a)   the statement issued by the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) chairman stating inter alia that “with the eyes of the international community on Burma at the present, the honour and credibility of the Burmese regime were at stake”, and further expressing grave concerns over the treatment of Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, and expressing support for ASEAN nations including Indonesia, Malaysia and The Philippines who have spoken out on this matter;

(b)   that the United Nations Secretary General said inter alia that he “…believes that Daw Aung San Suu Kyi is an essential partner for dialogue in Myanmar’s national reconciliation and calls on the Government not to take any further action that could undermine this important process…”;

(c)   the press statement issued on 22 May 2009 by the United Nations Security Council with its President for the month of May, Ambassador Vitaly Churkin of Russia, stating: “The members of the Security Council express their concern about the political impact of recent developments relating to Daw Aung San Suu Kyi” and “The members of the Security Council reiterate the need for the Government of Myanmar [Burma] to create the necessary conditions for a genuine dialogue with Daw Aung San Suu Kyi and all concerned parties and ethnic groups in order to achieve an inclusive national reconciliation with the support of the United Nations”, and which reaffirms the sentiments of two previous statements issued by the Security Council in 2007 and 2008; and

(d)   the Australian Government’s condemnation of Daw Aung San Suu Kyi’s detention, and its calls for her immediate release, as well as the Australian Government’s financial sanctions targeting senior members of the regime, their immediate families and associates.