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Volume 718: debated on Thursday 25 March 2010


Asked by

To ask Her Majesty's Government following the report of the International Development Committee on DfID Assistance to Burmese Internally Displaced People and Refugees on the Thai-Burma Border (10th Report, session 2006–07), how much funding has been provided to community-based organisations on the Thai-Burma border to build schools, clinics and shelter in Burma. [HL2819]

Since 2007, approximately £660,000 of funding from the Department for International Development (DfID) has been used by non-governmental organisations, based in Thailand, to provide humanitarian assistance in Burma. This assistance includes the provision of health, education and other services, and financial support to enable particularly vulnerable people displaced by conflict to buy food. About £18,000 of this funding has been used to build classrooms and water and sanitation facilities for people displaced by conflict.

Asked by

To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of whether elections due in Burma later this year will be free and fair. [HL2822]

Election laws published by the Burmese regime in early March compound the iniquities of the 2008 constitution. The laws appear to force the National League for Democracy to expel Aung San Suu Kyi and other political prisoners from the party, or disband and withdraw from the political process. The laws also require political parties to endorse a constitution imposed through a sham referendum and place severe restrictions on their ability to campaign. In view of these and other restrictions, planned elections cannot be free and fair. The military government appear intent on further marginalising the democratic opposition and Burma's many ethnic groups, when only a fully inclusive political process stands any chance of delivering stability and solving Burma's many problems.