Human right activists say OZ decision to lift sanctions on Burma 'premature, dangerous'
Sydney, June 9(ANI): Human right activists and former political prisoners have slammed Australia's announcement of removing lingering travel and financial sanctions on Burma as premature and dangerous.
Australian Foreign Minister Bob Carr announced the removal of the remaining sanctions on Burma on Thursday.
Senator Carr, who is approaching the end of an official visit to Burma, had talks with President Thein Sein and opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi during his visit.
Rights groups claims these are premature developments because the Burmese military still remains powerful, and a crusade against ethnic communities still persists in the northeast.
Activists say human rights abuses are still occurring, especially in Kachin State which is occupied by 150 army battalions.
"It is premature ... because Burma is still in civil war, the human rights' situation (has) not improved (and) more than 400 political prisoners still remain in prison. It is too early to lift the sanctions," The Herald Sun quoted Bo Kyi, secretary-general of the Thai-based Assistance Association for Political Prisoners Burma, as saying.
Kyi further said it was the wrong time to take a wrong decision.
Khin Omar, a co-ordinator for Burma Partnership, a regional advocacy network for human rights, said moves to ease sanctions were quite dangerous.
Omar said: "It's quite saddening for us to see that the very conditions (for which) the sanctions were in place in the first place are not even improved yet. In reality you put the sanctions in place at first to improve the human rights situation." (ANI)
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