Burmese protestors lobby Ban in Japan

Jul 1, 2008 (DVB), More than 200 Burmese nationals living in Japan gathered in front of the United Nations office in Tokyo yesterday to urge visiting UN chief Ban Ki-moon to take effective steps to resolve Burma's political impasse.

Thaung Myint Oo from the Japanese branch of the National League of Democracy (Liberated Area) told DVB that the rally was part of the celebration to commemorate the 5th anniversary of the 2003 Depayin Massacre in Burma.

"We want him to realise that more incidents like Depayin could happen in our country if the international community, such as the UN and the UNSC, doesn't help and take action against the military regime that uses its utmost military might to repress its own citizens however it wants," said Thaung Myint Oo.

On 30 May 2003, junta-back civilians attacked Daw Aung San Suu Kyi's entourage in Depayin township in Sagaing Division, leaving over 70 of her supporters dead and dozens injured.

"We want him to know that Daw Aung San Suu Kyi and her party, the National League for Democracy, need more protection to avoid harm and so we ask him to take effective measures to ensure their safety," Thaung Myint Oo continued.

After the rally, protestors sent a letter to the secretary-general through the Tokyo UN office conveying their dissatisfaction with the lack of progress in Burma since his visit to the country in May, Maing Kyaw Oo of United Ethnic Nationalities said.

"We were not satisfied with the developments in the situation in the country despite the promises Ban was given by the junta's top leader senior general Than Shwe," he said.

"Even the aid distribution to cyclone survivors has not been as effective as it should."

Maing Kyaw Oo said that protestors also asked the secretary-general about the result of the 10 May national referendum in their letter.

"We Burmese nationals in Japan really want to know the UN's position on the junta's forced adoption of the state constitution," he said.

Reporting by Naw Say Phaw

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