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Police breaks up rally in Burma (Th
Subject: Police breaks up rally in Burma (The Asian Asge, 4/12/96.)
Police breaks up rally in Burma
Students arrested, freed
Rangoon, Dec. 3: Riot police dispersed hundreds of
demonstrating students outside Rangoon's holiest shrine at
dawn on Tuesday following a night-long protest critical of the
"The regime claimed that Political elements" had incited the
protest, one of the largest in Burma in years, and said it so far
had handled the demonstrators "gently."
An unknown number of demonstrating students were being
detained at a former race track, but a regime spokesman said
they would be "sent back to their respective campuses after
About 150 heavily armed police pushed and pulled the students
on to trucks at the southern gate of the Shwedagon pagoda,
where they had been blocked from going any farther after a
night of sit-ins and marching around Rangoon.
Col. Kyaw Win, deputy director of the country's powerful
military intelligence apparatus, told a news conference the
students were seeking redress for certain grievances.
But he said the demonstration was actually sparked by political
elements opposed to Burma's successful entry into the
Association of Southeast Asian Nations. He did not elaborate.
Suu Kyi house barricaded
Rangoon, Dec. 3: Security forces barred access to the home of
prodemocracy activist Aung San Suu Kyi on Tuesday amid
reports that 300 student demonstrators had been detained by
The checkpoints were thrown up shortly before 7 am, a source
speaking from Ms Suu Kyi's home confirmed.
Meanwhile, the Opposition All Burma Students' Democratic
Front expressed support on Tuesday for student protesters in
Rangoon and appealed to the international community for
In a written statement, the ABSDF urged the ruling military
junta in Rangoon "not to resort to violence as these
demonstrations are just and for the genuine rights of the
The exiled students also asked for democratic change in Burma
and for "tripartite dialogue with democratic forces led by Ms
Aung San Suu Kyi and ethnic nationalities as the very first step
of solving ... critical problems."
A junta refusal to respect democratic rights and to address
underlying problems "will result in further demonstrations rather
than the aim of peaceful and stable education of the students,"
the ABSDF said. (AFP)