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Call from Ciribon Prison to support

Subject: Call from Ciribon Prison to support Burma

/* Written  5:01 PM  Nov 30, 1996 by tapol in gn:act.indonesia */
/* ---------- "Call from Ciribon Prison to support" ---------- */
Subject: Call from Ciribon Prison to support Burma

Subject: KdP : Statement TASS tentang Pertemuan Informal Pemimpin Asean
Date: Fri, 29 Nov 1996 
Kabar dari PIJAR


On 30 November, the leaders of the ASEAN states will be meeting in Jakarta
to discuss Burma's application to join the Association. Quite unexpectedly,
President Suharto has invited General Than Shwe, head of the  SLORC junta
who is also Burma's Prime Minister to Jakarta. This is clearly aimed at
paving the way for Burma to be accepted as the tenth ASEAN member, following
Laos and Cambodia which join in 1997.

Meanwhile, the international community is denouncing the Burmese military
regime which continues to trample on the rights of the pro-democracy
movement led by Aung San Suu Kyi. Both the US and the EU have issued
sanctions against the travels of senior Burmese government officials and
some western businesses have imposed boycotts against Burmese businesses.

There is a diversty of views within ASEAN. Some members like the
Philippines, Thailand and Ssingapore are calling for a review of the EU's
constructive engagement policy. They argue that democracy should be restored
in Burma before it can join ASEAN. Despite this, the Secretary General of
ASEAN, Ajit Singh, recently visited Rangoon to say that technically
speaking, the country is now ready to join.

As the most powerful member of the Association, Indonesia now seemed to be
pushing for Burma to become a member. By inviting General Than Shwe to this
week's meeting, Suharto is closing his eyes to the appeals from the NDL
leader Aung San Suu Kyi and the international community.
I appeal:

1.      To the members of ASEAN to reconsider the policy of constructive
engagement and to refuse to accept Burma as a member until it recognises the
electoral victory of the NDL in 1990 and bring the party into the
government. To accept that country now would mean condoning the oppression
of the Burmese people by the military regime.

2.      To Indonesians to understand the true situation in Burma and support
the restoration of democracy there. Impose a boycott by refusing to do
business, to visit or invest in Burma. Such activities can only benefit the
brutal military regime there.

3.      Call on world leaders and the world community to continue to exert
pressure on the Burmese military regime and urge ASEAN to refuse to accept
Burma as a member.

Cirebon Prison
23 November 1996
(Lembaga Pemasyarakatan Cirebon)
23 November 1996

Tri Agus S Siswowihardjo*
PIJAR Indonesia

* Tri Agus S Siswiwihardjo, known to his friends as TASS, is now in Cirebon
Prison because he published the newsletter of Pijar. He was arrested on 9
March 1995. 
Before helping to produce the Pijar newsletter, he worked for a while for
the weekly, Editor which was banned in June 1994. He also once convened an
'Indonesia Humour Week' Preparations are underway to publish a number of his
writings which, funds permitting, will be published in time for his release
on 9 March, next year. Contributions can be made to the following account: 

BANK CENTRAL ASIA Cabang pembantu Tebet-Jakarta
Account Number : 0921052218