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Dáil Éireann debate -
Tuesday, 21 May 1991

Vol. 408 No. 7

Written Answers. - Conditions in Burma.

Emmet Stagg


40 Mr. Stagg asked the Minister for Foreign Affairs if he will make a statement on the present situation in Burma.

The situation in Burma both in relation to human rights abuses and the failure of the military rulers to respect the results of the elections of May 1990 continues to be a matter of grave concern to me.

On 4 January 1991, Ireland and its partners in the Twelve member states of the European Community expressed their concern at the continuing failure of the Burmese military authorities to respond to the will of the people as expressed in the elections of May 1990. At the United Nations Commission on Human Rights in Geneva on 27 February, the Twelve expressed their grave concern at the deterioration in the human rights situation in Burma and noted that Burma featured in the report on torture compiled by the Special Rapporteur. An urgent appeal was made by the Twelve to Burmese rulers to transfer power without delay to the victors of the 1990 elections.

The prevailing conditions in Burma have led the European Community and its member states to suspend non-humanitarian development aid programmes. Economic and trade relations are now reduced to a minimum and for some time the member states of the European Community have not sold arms to Burma.

Ireland and its partners in the Twelve will continue to monitor developments in Burma closely and will lose no opportunity to convey to the Burmese authorities their continued deep dissatisfaction with the current situation in that country.