Skip to main content

Burma

Volume 449: debated on Wednesday 19 July 2006

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what discussions she has had with (a) Tanzania, (b) Ghana and (c) Republic of Congo in their capacity as members of the Security Council regarding United Nations resolutions on Burma. (85891)

I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave the hon. Member for Buckingham (John Bercow) on 26 June 2006, Official Report, column 172W.

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what representations she has made to the government of (a) France, (b) Austria, (c) Germany, (d) Italy and (e) Spain regarding investments in Burma. (85892)

We have made no such representations to the governments of these countries. The EU Common Position on Burma prohibits investment by EU member states in listed state-owned companies with links to the Burmese military. All EU member states are bound by the Common Position.

The latest EU Common Position, agreed on 27 April 2006, can be found on the EU website at:

http://europa.eu.int/eurlex/lex/LexUriServ/site/en/oj/2006/l_116/1_11620060429en00770097.pdf

I shall arrange for a copy of the EU Common Position to be placed in the Library of the House and for a copy to be sent to the hon. Member.

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent discussions she has had with the government of Burma on (a) the Karen people in Eastern Burma and (b) other issues relating to Burma; and if she will make a statement. (86015)

[holding answer 17 July 2006]: My right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary has had no discussions with the Government of Burma.

On 15 June, I summoned the Burmese Ambassador to raise our concerns about the human rights abuses suffered by ethnic groups, including the Karen; forced labour; restrictions on religious freedom; the use of sexual violence and the exploitation of children. I also repeated our call for the release of Aung San Suu Kyi and that of all other political prisoners held in Burma.

On 5 July, I wrote to the Burmese Foreign Minister, reiterating the points I made to the Burmese Ambassador. I shall arrange for a copy of my letter to be placed in the Library of the House and for a copy of the letter to be sent to the hon. Member.

We shall continue to take every opportunity to express the Government's concern to the regime and its representatives.