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.”
"Clashes in a refugee camp in Sudan's restive Darfur region left six people dead, U.N.-African Union peacekeepers said Saturday, days after violence elsewhere in the area claimed the lives of at least 37 people dead."
"The referendum commission in Sudan has unanimously agreed on who should take up the key position of secretary-general of the body."
"The United Nations on Wednesday opened its first field office ahead of Southern Sudan's scheduled January referendum on independence."
"Three Russian pilots kidnapped in Sudan's war-torn Darfur region two days ago have been freed, regional officials and Russia's Khartoum embassy say."
"The Obama administration, which came to office promising stronger leadership on Sudan, is now scrambling to salvage a 2005 U.S.-backed peace accord and prevent Africa's largest nation from sliding back into civil war."