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Editorial : GOI stop arms sales to Myanmar
The military government of Myanmar is attacking peaceful demonstrators , making illegal detentions of innocents , murdering monks – their crime urging for democracy. India being a democratic country , respecting democratic traditions , human rights must stop arms sales to Myanmar military instead must urge the Myanmar authorities , to protect human rights of it’s own people. Jai hind. Vande mataram.
AN APPEAL TO HONOURABLE FOREIGN MINISTER GOVERNMENT OF MYANMAR
Dear Minister ,
I am deeply concerned by the reports that thousands of monks and other peaceful protesters, including well-known comedians Zargana and Par Par Lay, have been detained.
I strongly urge the Myanmar authorities to release them immediately and unconditionally, unless they are to be charged with recognizably criminal offences. I call on the authorities to ensure that, while they remain in custody, all the detainees are held only in official places of detention, and are given immediate access to lawyers, their families and any medical treatment they may require. I also call on the authorities to ensure that the detainees are not subjected to torture or any other ill-treatment.
I call on the authorities to ensure that all people in Myanmar are able to peacefully exercise the rights to freedom of expression, association and assembly without fear of harassment, intimidation or arbitrary detention, in line with international human rights standards.
AN APPEAL TO HONOURABLE CHIEF MINISTER WEST BENGAL INDIA
Dear Sir ,
INDIA: Torture by pouring acid on the suspect in West Bengal
Name of the victim: Mr. Giasuddin Mandol, son of Alauddin Mandol, residing at Basudevpur, Chaurasi post, Deganga Police Station, 24 North Parganas district, West Bengal
Name of alleged perpetrators:
1. Mr. Julfikar Ali Mollaha, Inspector in Charge, Deganga Police Station, 24 North Parganas district, West Bengal
2. Mr. Ayub Ali, Sub Inspector of Police, Deganga Police Station, 24 North Parganas district, West Bengal
Date of incident: 2 August 2007 at Deganga Police Station
I am writing to express my concern regarding the case of Mr. Giasuddin Mandol, son of Alauddin Mandol, residing at Basudevpur, Chaurasi post, Deganga Police Station, 24 North Parganas district, West Bengal. I am informed that Mandol was arrested on August 2, 2007 by the 2nd perpetrator named above from his shop and was taken to the police station. I am informed that at the police station Mandol was tortured by the 1st perpetrator named above and that acid was poured into the victim’s rectum. I am aware that the victim suffered serious burns from the acid and started to bleed through his anus soon.
I am aware that the victim was taken to the hospital two days later and produced in court. I am informed that the victim did not get a proper treatment at the first instance and was remanded to judicial custody by the Magistrate. Form the judicial remand, since the victim’s condition was deteriorating, he was produced at the R.G. Kar Medical College and Hospital on August 13 where he had to undergo a surgery to treat his wounds. He was released later on September 4, 2007.
I am concerned to know about the treatment that was meted out against the victim at the police station. I am worried about such atrocious acts committed against suspects in the police station, which are often left off without proper inquiries. I am aware that in this case the local police have violated several procedural safeguards that they must have followed after arresting a person. I am also shocked to know about the extent to which the local police have gone to commit violence upon a suspect, which to me is a reflection of the state in which the policing is in India.
I therefore urge you to take appropriate steps so that and enquiry is ordered into this case. I further request you to ensure that appropriate compensation is paid to the victim and that all future expenses for the victim for his treatment are met with by the state. The police officers responsible for the torture must be punished and steps must be initiated so that similar cases do not repeat.
I hope that you will take appropriate actions in this case at the earliest.
Burma: Security Council Should Impose Arms Embargo
Weapons Sales by India, China and Russia Fuel Abuses, Strengthen Military Rule
(New York, October 10, 2007) – The United Nations Security Council should impose and enforce a mandatory arms embargo on Burma because of continuing massive violations of human rights, Human Rights Watch said today. India, China, Russia, and other nations are supplying Burma with weapons that the military uses to commit human rights abuses and to bolster its ability to maintain power.
“It’s time for the Security Council to end all sales and transfers of arms to a government that uses repression and fear to hang onto power,” said Brad Adams, Asia director at Human Rights Watch. “Instead of continuing to protect Burma’s abusive generals, China and Russia should join other Security Council members to cut off the instruments of repression.”
India appears to be one of the two main suppliers of advanced modern arms to the Burmese military. Earlier this year, India sold Burma two BN-2 Defender maritime surveillance aircraft that India had bought from the United Kingdom in the 1980s. The aircraft were delivered in August despite the British government’s objections that they were being supplied to a country under a European Union arms embargo. Later this year, India sold T-55 tanks and 105mm artillery pieces to the Burmese military. As it wages war against ethnic insurgents, the military routinely uses weapons such as artillery and mortars in conflict areas to destroy villages and exact retributions against civilian settlements.
India is currently preparing to send Burma aircraft, artillery, armored personnel carriers, tanks, ships, and a host of small arms in the next year. Perhaps most alarming, India has offered to sell newly developed Advanced Light Helicopters (ALH) to Burma, manufactured by Hindustan Aeronautical Limited (HAL). These helicopters, if delivered, would give the Burmese military a sophisticated weapon platform to fire rockets and guns, which could be used with devastating effect against political demonstrations in urban areas or rural villagers.
According to a recent report from Saferworld and Amnesty International, the Advanced Light Helicopters use superior European rockets and guns, as well as powerful French engines. Human Rights Watch urged the manufacturers and countries where these products are made to call on the Indian government to end sales to Burma and to ensure proper monitoring and implementation of end-use agreements.
“India’s close relationship with the Burmese military is a discredit to the ‘world’s largest democracy,’” said Adams. “The Indian authorities should be leading the efforts to end the supply of arms being used against the democracy movement in Burma.”
China is the other main arms supplier. It has supplied Burma with advanced helicopter gunships, arms production technology, and support equipment such as trucks and vehicles. Chinese-manufactured Mi-8 helicopter gunships have been photographed supporting Burmese military actions in eastern Burma where Burmese troops have committed numerous war crimes against civilians and massive displacement in its attacks on ethnic minority separatist groups. Beijing has also supplied small arms, including mortars, landmines, and assault rifles, as well as assistance in setting up an indigenous small-arms production capability. China has supplied a vast array of advanced military hardware to Burma, including fighter planes, naval vessels and tanks, and other infantry support weapons.
“China says it wants stability and a peaceful solution to the crisis in Burma,” said Adams. “But as long as Beijing continues to arm the Burmese military and give it political cover, the situation in Burma will remain violently unstable.”
Russia is also a noted supplier of arms to Burma, which includes a deal for MiG-29 fighter planes in 2002.
South Korean companies including Daewoo International Corporation and several others have been accused of illegally boosting the capacity of the Burmese army to produce weaponry. Daewoo reportedly supplied technology and equipment to build a factory to produce mortar rounds near the town of Prome, leading to South Korean investigations and indictments against company officials.
North Korea has supplied truck-borne multiple launch rocket systems (MLRS) and artillery pieces to Burma. North Korean engineers have also been contracted to build an underground tunnel complex at the new national capital at Nay Pyi Daw in central Burma, where the military leadership is based.
Burma has also reportedly received weapons from Israel. In 2005, Israel was reported to have sold 150 Brazilian EE-9 Cascavels light tanks to Burma.
Human Rights Watch said that an arms embargo should also include a ban against training the Burmese military, paramilitary, and police forces, all of which have been used to crush the pro-democracy movement in Burma. According to information received by Human Rights Watch, there are hundreds of Burmese defense forces officers being trained in military academies in Russia on nuclear physics, artillery techniques, and computer technology. Exiled Burmese media groups report that cyber-warfare activities that hacked their sites in the past week originated in Moscow. Russia and the Ukraine also have a number of technical staff based in Burma to train Burmese air force and army personnel. Australia has included Burmese police and military officers in its counterterrorism training workshops at centers in Indonesia.
Other nations involved in training the Burmese military include China, which continues to train fighter pilots following the sale of F-7 Airguard fighter planes in the 1990s. The recent sales of advance weaponry from India will also require training assistance. India has also offered Special Forces training to Burmese military units to aid joint operations along the shared border along northeast India and western Burma.
“The nations of the world are arming and training the Burmese military at the same time that they condemn Burma’s human rights violations,” Adams said. “These countries should back up their rhetoric with actions to avoid complicity in attacks on the Burmese people.”
The Burmese spend an estimated 40 percent of the government budget on the military, while combined health and education expenditure is among the lowest in Asia. Military-run hospitals and schools are the best in the country, while civilian hospitals are poorly funded and cannot respond to the widespread health crisis in HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, and malaria. While Burma’s people are among the poorest in the region, senior military officials live lavish lifestyles. Instead of working to improve the lives of its people, the military also routinely seizes land from civilians for defense establishments and frontline bases, using forced labor in construction.
“The world should insist that the Burmese government address the country’s massive poverty and build up its health and education infrastructure,” said Adams. “Instead, many countries are draining Burma of its limited resources through military sales, profiting handsomely while many Burmese struggle to put food on the table.”
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