Spokesperson for Foreign Affairs
8 August 2011
Labour joins in commemorating 8/8/88 massacre
Today, the 23rd anniversary of the deadly pro-democracy uprising in Burma, is an opportunity to not only commemorate
those killed during the protest, but to highlight on-going human rights injustices in that country as well, says
Labour’s Foreign Affairs spokesperson, Maryan Street.
“On August 8, 1988, thousands of people, including monks, students, activists and workers, rose up against their
military oppressors and demanded democracy for their country. The authorities reacted with brutality, and 3000 innocent
people lost their lives.
“The Labour Party today joins with the Burmese communities across New Zealand - refugees who have escaped the prisons
and dangers of Burma but who have not forgotten the purpose of their struggle - to commemorate the lives and dreams of
those who perished in that protest,” Maryan Street said.
“We also firmly back other international communities calling for the immediate release of the 2200 political prisoners
still being detained in Burmese jails, and seek the rightful reinstatement of Aung San Suu Kyi as the leader of the
National League for Democracy and the legitimately elected leader of the Burmese people.
“Everything possible must be done to assist Burma to return to meaningful elections and a peaceful, democratic
existence,” Maryan Street said.