Drawing upon the voices of cultural leaders to protect and assist the vulnerable, marginalized and displaced.
On Tuesday, leaders from the US, UK, France, Italy, Canada, South Africa, and Malaysia criticized the decision to sentence Burmese democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi to 18 months under house arrest. Regional bodies, including the EU and ASEAN, said Suu Kyi's incarceration calls into question the legitimacy of the ruling military regime's planned 2010 elections. UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon issued a statement saying he "strongly deplored" the decision and called on the Burmese military government "to immediately and unconditionally release" the Nobel Laureate, and to "engage with her without delay as an essential partner in the process of national reconciliation."
Follow the jump for a full press round-up of the global outcry over the Suu Kyi verdict.
“I've seen first-hand how dire the situation is for Zimbabwean refugees in South Africa. Women are being raped, orphaned children have no protection, and thousands of people are without even the most basic supplies. Every-day survival has become a harrowing task,” said Not On Our Watch board member Matt Damon. “As the situation in Zimbabwe remains unresolved, the international community must stop sitting on the sidelines and instead take action to help those who need it most. Not On Our Watch is proud to support UNICEF's work in this critical time.”
"Energy giants Total and Chevron are propping up Burma's junta with a gas project that has allowed the regime to stash nearly five billion dollars in Singaporean banks, a rights group said Thursday."
"The European Union is not ready to end its sanctions against Zimbabwe, Sweden's Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt said on Thursday after calls by southern African leaders for them to be lifted."
"Burma troops were acting on a tip-off from China when they seized an illegal arms factory last month, triggering several days of clashes with an ethnic militia that sent more than 30,000 refugees fleeing across the border into China, an official said."
"Former enemies from north and south Sudan failed on Thursday to reach an agreement on a key referendum law at the break of the latest round of talks with US special envoy Scott Gration."
"Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Jiang Yu on Thursday reaffirmed China's no involvement policy in Burma's internal affairs and called for peaceful solutions."