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Against Brutal Crackdowns and Irresponsible Investments in Burma
Stop the Human Cost of Burma's Military greed and Irresponsible Foreign Investments!
Come join the protest to denounce the brutal crackdown against peaceful protesters and ask for the cancellation of the Letpadaung mine. Let’s highlight the human cost of greedy, irresponsible projects and investments in Burma.
What: Protest at the Chinese Consulate to denounce the violent crackdown against the peaceful protester at the Letpadaung mine trying to safeguard their land, way of life, health and heritage. And this is only one of many similarly controversial and mega projects in Burma and we must stop this widespread land grabbing, resource looting backed by the military and their cronies.
11 am to 12:30 pm; Monday, December 3rd, 2012
Where: Chinese Consulate San Francisco, 1450 Laguna Street, San Francisco, CA 94115
Background: A peaceful protest has been crackdown last Thursday violently and 70 Buddhist monks and five laypersons were injured with severe burns, and that, by Saturday, 26 monks were still receiving medical treatment at the hospital.
The mine is a joint venture between China’s Wanbao Mining Copper Ltd. and the military-owned Union of Myanmar Economic Holdings Ltd (UMEH)
The Chinese firm’s involvement also raised serious concerns as Wan Bao is a subsidiary of the North Industries Corporation, China’s main weapons manufacturer.
Daw Aung San Suu Kyi has condemned the violent crackdown, requested the Gov’t Apology for it and also heading the investigation committee. She stated that people had the right to ask why authorities cracked down so harshly on the nonviolent protesters who had occupied the nearby Letpadaung copper mine for 11 days.
For many years [local villagers] have had health problems from air, soil, and water contamination they believe are the result of mining processes. Many at the old mine sites also allege their land was confiscated without compensation. More than 7,800 acres of land from 26 villages under the shadow of the Letpadaung mountain range have been seized to make way for the Chinese-backed project since it began last year.
Local villagers have been staging protests to demand its closure, citing environmental destruction, forced relocations and illegal land confiscation.
Thursday’s pre-dawn raid left dozens of unarmed demonstrators, the majority of whom Buddhist monks, seriously injured. Security forces used water cannons, tear gas and smoke bombs Thursday to clear protesters from a copper mine in northwestern Burma.
The crackdown showed once again that the government, which claims to have turned over a new leaf and to listen to public opinion, is only really protecting its own interests and those of foreign investors.
“Six key organizers of supporting protests in Rangoon were also arrested.
The United States also voiced concern Friday over the “forcible eviction” of peaceful protesters.
Many in Burma remain suspicious of the military and see China as an aggressive and exploitive investor that helped support its rule. The association between the two firms raised alarm bells among activists who asked for the contract to be made accountable to the public.Last week, Aung Min, a minister attached to the Burmese President’s Office, visited the area and met local people protesting the project and publicly admitted, “We are afraid of China… If China asks for compensation, even the Myitsone Dam shutdown would cost US $3 billion.”
We must ensure this brutal crackdown not be repeated again, stop the irresponsible investments and stop the military and their cronies from selling the country's precious natural resource for their own benefits.
Protest Organizing Team
(Contact: 510 220 1323, 510 432 2570, 510 533 6424, 510 7124946)
Burmese American Democratic Alliance (BADA)