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Maintain pressure on Burma.



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DEMOCRATS MEDIA TUESDAY OCTOBER 2 2007

SENATOR NATASHA STOTT DESPOJA AUSTRALIAN DEMOCRATS FOREIGN AFFAIRS SPOKESPERSON

MAINTAIN PRESSURE ON BURMA

The Australian Democrats have welcomed the Federal Government's decision to knock back Burma's proposed new ambassador to Canberra, and urged the Government to keep up its pressure on the regime.

"There is a danger that the world's attention will shift elsewhere now that the military junta is using force to discourage mass protests by the Burmese people. We must not let this happen - Australia and the world must keep up its pressure on the Burmese regime," Democrats' Foreign Affairs Spokesperson Senator Natasha Stott Despoja said.

"If international attention and pressure is not maintained on the regime, it could be another 20 years before we see this kind of uprising again. The Burmese people should not have to wait that long.

"We can not lose focus. I urge the Australian Government to redouble its diplomatic efforts in seeking a change in approach among those who either have influence with the Burmese military regime or are blocking multinational efforts to do so - particularly ASEAN, China, India, and Russia.

"Once again, I call on the United Nations to unequivocally condemn the recent violence in Burma and act to ensure that the military junta is not allowed to repress the Burmese people with impunity," Senator Stott Despoja said.

Senator Stott Despoja is co-convenor of the Australian Parliamentarians for Democracy in Burma.

Media contact: Raina Hunter - 0417 085 260