Tell Apparel Brands to Support the Civil Disobedience Movement (CDM) in Myanmar

For Immediate Release: 11 March 2021

Apparel Brands Must Act to End Intimidation of Workers Engaged in the CDM in Myanmar

Today, 40 human and labor rights organizations published an open letter calling on the apparel brands sourcing from Myanmar to act to end the intimidation of workers engaged in peaceful pro-democracy protests as part of the Civil Disobedience Movement (CDM).

Apparel workers are the backbone of the CDM in Myanmar
The Myanmar Times

On February 1st, the military executed a coup against the elected civilian government. In response, people of all walks of life in Myanmar have risen up in the new Civil Disobedience Movement (CDM). Garment workers have played a central role in the CDM’s recent pro-democracy protests and, on March 8th, 2021, they launched a general strike.

However, workers who participate in or show support for CDM protests are being intimidated, threatened and, in some cases, laid off by factory management. Intimidation includes workplace discrimination, detracting salary from workers who take holiday leave to participate in the protests, and threats of mass dismissals. This compounds a deteriorating situation where the military is shooting protesters and raiding worker dormitories at night in search of union leaders.

In a 14 February letter, the Industrial Workers Federation Myanmar made four demands to international brands with Myanmar suppliers, including a public condemnation of the military coup and an effort to ensure that no worker or union leaders should be punished for going on strike or joining the demonstrations. Another letter, dated 18 February, asks brands to exercise due diligence to ensure that their suppliers respect their workers’ right to freedom of association, right to join trade union activities, and other fundamental human and labor rights.

“We are being shot in the streets during the day. Our homes are being raided at night. We have made the global apparel brands huge profits with our bare hands over the years, the very least they should do right now is ensure we are not fired simply for wishing not to live under a military dictatorship. Amidst such an undisputed human rights travesty, their silence thus far is appalling,” stated Ma Moe Sandar Myint, Chairwoman of the Federation of General Workers of Myanmar (FGWM).

“We call on all international brands sourcing from Myanmar factories to both respect and comply with the call by the Industrial Workers Federation Myanmar and Federation of Garment Workers Myanmar,” stated Simon Billenness, Executive Director of the International Campaign for the Rohingya.

High-profile global brands such as Adidas, Lidl, and Zara (Inditex) produce apparel in Myanmar factories, but none have issued a public statement explicitly demanding that no workers producing their goods be dismissed for participation in the pro-democracy demonstrations. A recent investigation by Frontier, Danwatch, and Myanmar Now found evidence of discrimination against labor leaders and violations of basic labor standards at garment factories across Yangon supplying major apparel brands.

In their open letter, the 40 labor and human rights organizations state:

“We further call on these brands to exhibit rigorous due diligence in instructing the owners and management of the factories, from which they source, to comply fully with the brands’ standards for the rights of workers who make their apparel. These instructions must include a prohibition of any intimidation by management of workers who miss work due to participation in the civil disobedience campaign. Such instruction must be accompanied by a warning that the brands will terminate their contracts with factories that violate this requirement. We will be closely monitoring the situation in Myanmar. We reserve our right to take all appropriate action in support of workers as they assert their rights both as workers and as citizens of Myanmar.”

For more information contact:

Simon Billenness

Executive Director, International Campaign for the Rohingya

Campaign Director, No Business With Genocide

Mobile (US): 617-596-6158

Twitter: @Rohingya_ICR

simon.billenness@rohingyacampaign.org

www.rohingyacampaign.org

Dozens killed today: what you can do for the Myanmar people

The videos coming out of Myanmar today are horrific. There’s evidence that the military killed dozens of peaceful protesters, including at least one person in a close-range execution. Reports are that the security forces killed dozens of people in the worst daily atrocity since the military coup.

The brave young people of the Civil Disobedience Movement (CDM) are demanding an end to military rule. They are leading a boycott of all military owned businesses. Let’s back up their call to us to impose tough and targeted sanctions on the military, including its business empire.

Your actions work. Using our power as consumers, we have already forced both Western Union and Japanese beer giant Kirin to end their partnerships with the Myanmar military. So let’s all take four actions today to end corporate collaboration with the security forces.

Action #1: End the Myanmar military’s trade in #GenocideGems

Tell luxury jeweller Harry Winston (owned by Swatch) to stop selling jewellery with Burmese #GenocideGems.

Myanmar produces more than 90% of the world’s rubies and jade. The Myanmar military’s extensive commercial interests in gemstone extraction and trade mean that the military profits when high-end jewelry retailers – like Harry Winston (owned by Swatch) – buy Burmese gems for their collections.

Would you also help us track down the jewelers who are selling gems from Burma? Search online for jewelers who are selling Burmese rubies or jade. If you find on sale, jewelry containing rubies or sapphires labeled as Burmese or from Myanmar, email us a tip at info@rohingyacampaign.org.

Action #2: Stop the flow of oil and gas money to the military

Sign – and share – our petition demanding that Chevron stop bankrolling the Myanmar military.

As Myanmar’s generals look for revenues to prop up their new dictatorship following the February 1 coup, there’s one source of money they can count on: natural gas projects backed by foreign investors including Chevron of the US, France’s Total, South Korea’s Posco, China’s CNOOC, Australia’s Woodbridge, and Malaysia’s Petronas.

The Myanmar regime earns close to US$1 billion a year from natural gas sales.Much of this money is not paid directly from oil companies to the government. It flows through Myanma Oil and Gas Enterprise (MOGE), a state-owned enterprise with deep links to the military’s business empire. Alarmingly, the military coup places MOGE and the rest of the government under direct military control.

Action #3: Demand Cloudflare Stop Protecting the Military

Sign our petition to demand that Cloudflare stop protecting military websites.

Cloudflare provides website services for the military-controlled Ministry of Home Affairs and Myanmar police force. Cloudflare protects and shields the websites of the security forces that are attacking, injuring, and killing young people peacefully protesting on the streets.

Action #4: Demand that Facebook completely ban the Myanmar military

Facebook still lets the military use Facebook to promote its companies and products. 

The military’s profits from its business empire help fund the Burmese army’s march towards its genocide of the Rohingya and its atrocities against the Kachin, Shan, Karen, and other ethnic minorities in Myanmar.

Action #5. Make a gift to build our movementWe can and must build our pressure on Myanmar’s military. Your actions have moved your governments to pass tough sanctions and successfully pressed companies, such as Facebook, Western Union, online jeweler Angara, and Kirin Brewing, to end their business partnerships with the Burmese military.

Your gifts will help us keep building the campaigns and tools that we need to take effective action together. Please click here to make a gift of $30, $60, $120, $250, or more.

Together, we can build our movement to end the Myanmar military’s corrupt and brutal rule.Thank you so much,

Simon Billenness, Executive Director

For the International Campaign for the Rohingya: Debbie Stothard, Jack Rendler, J. Mark Brinkmoeller, Simran Stuelpnagel, Michael DeLong, Alyson Chadwick, and Hannah Sussman.

And in the memory of our late co-founder and board chair emeritus, Joseph K. Grieboski.

For Further Reading:

Partial ban on military Facebook pages welcomed by Burma Campaign UK,” Burma Campaign UK, 25 February 2021

Facebook has continued to fail Myanmar. Now its people have to pay the price.,” Media Matters, 25 February 2021

Sanction Myanmar Military, Not Myanmar People,” Justice For Myanmar and Burma Campaign UK, 5 February 2021

How to squeeze Myanmar’s military without hurting its people,” Southeast Asia Globe, 12 February 2021

Who Profits From a Coup? The Power and Greed of Senior General Min Aung Hlaing,” Justice For Myanmar, January 2021

“Dirty List” of companies doing business with the Myanmar military, Burma Campaign UK

Military Ltd,” Amnesty International, September 2020

Will Myanmar’s ‘Genocide Gems’ Become the New Blood Diamonds?,” BusinessWeek,  October 17, 2018

“No Genocide Gems! Burmese Military Takes a Hit From Citizens Sanctions,” International Campaign for the Rohingya blog

Cloudflare must terminate its services for the Myanmar military,” International Campaign for the Rohingya and Burma Campaign UK, 8 February 2021

Follow the up-to-the-minute news on Twitter using these hashags: #CivilDisobedienceMovement #WhatsHappeningInMyanmar #JusticeForMyanmar

Subscribe to Frontier Myanmar’s excellent daily coverage from inside the country.

Let’s be the Myanmar military’s worst nightmare

We are the Myanmar military’s worst nightmare. We are a growing united front, led by the brave young people of #CivilDisobedienceMovement on the streets in Myanmar. We include people of every ethnicity and every religion in Myanmar. And we also comprise the supporters of the peoples of Myanmar around the world, taking action in solidarity with their struggle for democracy and human rights.

We are the global movement that can end the Myanmar military’s long brutal and corrupt rule in Burma. Will you take six actions today to help bring down and hold to account the Myanmar military?

Action #1: Stay Informed

Keep track of breaking news in Myanmar by following our Twitter: @rohingya_icr. Follow the news from inside Myanmar on Twitter using these hashags: #CivilDisobedienceMovement #WhatsHappeningInMyanmar #JusticeForMyanmar

Excellent coverage from inside Myanmar is available daily from Frontier Myanmar. As long as the military allows them to stay open, read their website and sign up for their daily emails.

Action #2. Demand the U.S. enact tough sanctions on the Myanmar military

Click here to urge U.S. President Joe Biden impose further tough and targeted sanctions on the Myanmar military.

If you have already signed the petition, share it with your friends worldwide. If so, please email, message, or text ten or more of your friends to ask them to join you. Send them this short link to the petition: http://bit.ly/BidenSanctionMyanmar

Action #3: Stop the flow of oil and gas money to the military

Sign – and share – our petition demanding that Chevron stop bankrolling the Myanmar military.

As Myanmar’s generals look for revenues to prop up their new dictatorship following the February 1 coup, there’s one source of money they can count on: natural gas projects backed by foreign investors including Chevron of the US, France’s Total, South Korea’s Posco, China’s CNOOC, Australia’s Woodbridge, and Malaysia’s Petronas. The Myanmar regime earns close to US$1 billion a year from natural gas sales.

Much of this money is not paid directly from oil companies to the government. It flows through Myanma Oil and Gas Enterprise (MOGE), a state-owned enterprise with deep links to the military’s business empire. Alarmingly, the military coup places MOGE and the rest of the government under direct military control.

Action #4: End the Myanmar military’s trade in #GenocideGems

Tell luxury jeweller Harry Winston (owned by Swatch) to stop selling jewellery with Burmese #GenocideGems.

Myanmar produces more than 90% of the world’s rubies and jade. The Myanmar military’s extensive commercial interests in gemstone extraction and trade mean that the military profits when high-end jewelry retailers – like Harry Winston (owned by Swatch) – buy Burmese gems for their collections.

Would you also help us track down the jewelers who are selling gems from Burma? Search online for jewelers who are selling Burmese rubies or jade. If you find on sale, jewelry containing rubies or sapphires labeled as Burmese or from Myanmar, email us a tip at info@rohingyacampaign.org.

Action #5: Demand that Facebook ban the Myanmar military

Sign our petition telling Facebook to ban all accounts of the Myanmar military.

Facebook allows the Burmese military to use Facebook to spread hate speech, recruit soldiers, and build its lucrative business empire. The Myanmar military’s profits from its business empire help fund the Burmese army’s march towards its genocide of the Rohingya and its atrocities against the Kachin, Shan, Karen, and other ethnic minorities in Myanmar.

Action #6. Make a gift to build our movement

We can and must build our pressure on Myanmar’s military. Your actions have moved your governments to pass tough sanctions and successfully pressed companies, such as Western Union, online jeweler Angara, and Kirin Brewing, to end their business partnerships with the Burmese military.

Your gifts will help us keep building the campaigns and tools that we need to take effective action together. Please click here to make a gift of $30, $60, $120, $250, or more.

Together, we can build our movement to end the Myanmar military’s corrupt and brutal rule.

Simon Billenness, Executive Director

For the International Campaign for the Rohingya: Debbie Stothard, Jack Rendler, J. Mark Brinkmoeller, Joseph K. Grieboski, Simran Stuelpnagel, Michael DeLong, and Alyson Chadwick.

For Further Reading:

Subscribe to Frontier Myanmar’s excellent daily coverage from inside the country.

Sanction Myanmar Military, Not Myanmar People,” Justice For Myanmar and Burma Campaign UK, 5 February 2021

How to squeeze Myanmar’s military without hurting its people,” Southeast Asia Globe, 12 February 2021

Who Profits From a Coup? The Power and Greed of Senior General Min Aung Hlaing,” Justice For Myanmar, January 2021

“Dirty List” of companies doing business with the Myanmar military, Burma Campaign UK

Military Ltd,” Amnesty International, September 2020

Will Myanmar’s ‘Genocide Gems’ Become the New Blood Diamonds?,” BusinessWeek,  October 17, 2018

“No Genocide Gems! Burmese Military Takes a Hit From Citizens Sanctions,” International Campaign for the Rohingya blog

Time for Facebook to kick Burma military off Facebook,” Burma Campaign UK, 16 February 2021

Myanmar military cracks down; what you can do.

It’s night in Myanmar now and the military is cracking down violently. In Myitkyina in Kachin State, soldiers have fired on pro-democracy protesters. All over Myanmar, the military has shut down the Internet and deployed armored vehicles apparently for use in mass arrests.

Today, please strike back at this military crackdown by taking the following five actions.

Action #1: Stay Informed

Keep track of breaking news in Myanmar by following our Twitter: @rohingya_icr.  Follow the news from inside Myanmar on Twitter using these hashags: #CivilDisobedienceMovement #WhatsHappeningInMyanmar #JusticeForMyanmar

Excellent coverage from inside Myanmar is also available daily from Frontier Myanmar. Read their website and sign up for their daily emails as long as the military allows them to stay open.

Action #2. Lobby Your Government

Wherever you live, please demand that the U.S. Administration step up its tough and targeted sanctions on the Myanmar military.

Click here to urge U.S. President Joe Biden impose further tough and targeted sanctions on the Myanmar military.

If you have already signed the petition, share it with your friends worldwide. If so, please email, message, or text ten or more of your friends to ask them to join you. Send them this short link to the petition: http://bit.ly/BidenSanctionMyanmar

Action #3: Stop the flow of oil and gas money to the military

We join Justice For Myanmar in calling for all corporations to immediately stop bankrolling the Myanmar military. The people of Myanmar have mobilized against the dictatorship through a national campaign of civil disobedience and boycotts against military-owned companies. We must back up the peoples of Myanmar in their struggle.

Sign – and share – our petition demanding that Chevron stop bankrolling the Myanmar military.

As Myanmar’s generals look for revenues to prop up their new dictatorship following the February 1 coup, there’s one source of money they can count on: natural gas projects backed by foreign investors including Chevron, France’s Total, South Korea’s Posco, China’s CNOOC, Australia’s Woodbridge, and Malaysia’s Petronas. The Myanmar regime earns close to US$1 billion a year from natural gas sales.

Much of this money is not paid directly from oil companies to the government. It flows through Myanma Oil and Gas Enterprise (MOGE), a state-owned enterprise with deep links to the military’s business empire. Alarmingly, the recent military coup places MOGE and the rest of the government under direct military control.

Action #4: End the Myanmar military’s trade in #GenocideGems

Tell luxury jeweller Harry Winston (owned by Swatch) to stop selling jewellery with Burmese #GenocideGems.

For decades, Myanmar’s military has committed numerous war crimes against ethnic minorities in Burma including the Karen, Shan, and Kachin. The military has systematically burned down villages, gang-raped women and girls, and killed those who resist. Moreover, Myanmar now stands at the International Court of Justice on charges of genocide against the Rohingya. Together, we can demand that Jewellery retailers, such as Harry Winston, stop buying Burmese gems that help fund the military’s atrocities against the peoples of Myanmar.

Myanmar produces more than 90% of the world’s rubies and jade, and these stones command the highest prices on the international market. The military dominates the gemstone industry in Myanmar. Its extensive commercial interests in gemstone extraction and trade mean that the military profits when high-end jewelry retailers – like Harry Winston (owned by Swatch) – buy Burmese gems for their collections.

Action #5. Make a gift to build our movement

We can and must build our pressure on Myanmar’s military. Your actions have moved your governments to pass tough sanctions and successfully pressed companies, such as Western Union, online jeweler Angara, and Kirin Brewing, to end their business partnerships with the Burmese military.

Your gifts will help us keep building the campaigns and tools that we need to take effective action together. Please click here to make a gift of $30, $60, $120, $250, or more.

Together, we can build our movement to end the Myanmar military’s corrupt and brutal rule.Thank you so much,Simon Billenness, Executive Director

For the International Campaign for the Rohingya: Debbie Stothard, Jack Rendler, J. Mark Brinkmoeller, Joseph K. Grieboski, Simran Stuelpnagel, Michael DeLong, and Alyson Chadwick.

For Further Reading:

Subscribe to Frontier Myanmar’s excellent daily coverage from inside the country.

Sanction Myanmar Military, Not Myanmar People,” Justice For Myanmar and Burma Campaign UK, 5 February 2021

How to squeeze Myanmar’s military without hurting its people,” Southeast Asia Globe, 12 February 2021

Who Profits From a Coup? The Power and Greed of Senior General Min Aung Hlaing,” Justice For Myanmar, January 2021

“Dirty List” of companies doing business with the Myanmar military, Burma Campaign UK

Military Ltd,” Amnesty International, September 2020

Will Myanmar’s ‘Genocide Gems’ Become the New Blood Diamonds?,” BusinessWeek,  October 17, 2018

“No Genocide Gems! Burmese Military Takes a Hit From Citizens Sanctions,” International Campaign for the Rohingya blog

No Valentine’s Day for Harry Winston and Swatch

Tomorow is Valentine’s Day. It’s the biggest day for gifts of jewelry second only to Christmas. This weekend, let’s send a strong message to luxury jeweler Harry Winston, and its owner Swatch, to stop selling Burmese gems that profit Myanmar’s military.

Sign our petition to Harry Winston demanding that it stop supporting the Myanmar military.

For decades, Myanmar’s military has systematically burned down villages, gang-raped women and girls, and killed those who resist. This has been the Myanmar army’s brutal strategy of atrocities against ethnic minorities, such as the Kachin, Karen, and Shan as well as the military’s genocide against the Rohingya. Together, we can demand that Jewellery retailers, such as Harry Winston, stop buying Burmese gems that help fund the military’s atrocities against the peoples of Myanmar.

Myanmar produces more than 90% of the world’s rubies and jade, and these stones command the highest prices on the international market. The military dominates the gemstone industry in Myanmar. Its extensive commercial interests in gemstone extraction and trade mean that the military profits when high-end jewelry retailers – like Harry Winston (owned by Swatch) – buy Burmese gems for their collections.

Take action now to demand that Harry Winston stop selling Myanmar genocide gems.

We can make this Valentine’s Day weekend stand out for Harry Winston and Swatch. In addition to signing the petition, follow up by posting messages on the companies’ social media accounts.

Copy the message below and adapt it as you wish. Add it as a comment on posts showcasing jewelry or watches on the Facebook and Instagram pages of Harry Winston and Swatch.

I refuse to buy your brands while Harry Winston (owned by Swatch) buys #GenocideGems from Myanmar that profit the Burmese military and its atrocities against the peoples of Myanmar.

Read the truth about Harry Winston here. https://actionnetwork.org/petitions/tell-harry-winston-stop-selling-burmese-genocide-gems

Harry Winston’s Facebook

Harry Winston’s Instagram

Swatch’s Facebook

Swatch’s Instagram

Don’t neglect to post similar comments on the companies’ LinkedIn page. Join us in telling the companies on their job postings why you would never work for a company that supports the Myanmar military.

Harry Winston’s LinkedIn

Swatch’s LinkedIn

We can and must build our pressure on Myanmar’s military. Your actions have moved your governments to pass tough sanctions and successfully pressed companies, such as Western Union, online jeweler Angara, and Kirin brewery, to end their business partnerships with the Burmese military.

Your gifts will help us keep building the campaigns and tools that we need to take effective action together. Please click here to make a gift of $30, $60, $120, $250, or more.

Together, we can build our movement to end the Myanmar military’s corrupt and brutal rule.

Thank you so much,

Simon Billenness, Executive Director

For the International Campaign for the Rohingya: Debbie Stothard, Jack Rendler, J. Mark Brinkmoeller, Joseph K. Grieboski, Simran Stuelpnagel, Michael DeLong, and Alyson Chadwick.

Harry Winston item featuring Burmese gems

Ruby and Diamond ring by Harry Winston

“A 20.25 carat oval-shaped Burmese ruby center stone with 28 round brilliant diamonds weighing a total of approximately 4.64 carats, set in platinum.”

For Further Reading:

Subscribe to Frontier Myanmar’s excellent daily coverage from inside the country.

Will Myanmar’s ‘Genocide Gems’ Become the New Blood Diamonds?,” BusinessWeek,  October 17, 2018

“No Genocide Gems! Burmese Military Takes a Hit From Citizens Sanctions,” International Campaign for the Rohingya blog

Sanction Myanmar Military, Not Myanmar People,” Justice For Myanmar and Burma Campaign UK, 5 February 2021

Who Profits From a Coup? The Power and Greed of Senior General Min Aung Hlaing,” Justice For Myanmar, January 2021

“Dirty List” of companies doing business with the Myanmar military, Burma Campaign UK

Military Ltd,” Amnesty International, September 2020

You did it; US to sanction Myanmar military

It’s now Day 11 of the 2/1/21 Myanmar coup.  

Thank you for – in your thousands! – signing our petitions, turning up for protests, contacting your elected representatives, and, all the while, sharing everything you do on social media. Because of your actions, US President Joe Biden announced yesterday that the US will impose sanctions on the Myanmar military.

Please take a moment to savor your significant victory. You are an important part of a growing global movement of people just like you. Let’s continue to do all that we can to help the young people of Myanmar as they face down the military in the streets.

We are still a trigger-point away from Burmese soldiers brutally cracking down on the pro-democracy demonstrators. In 1988, and again in 2007, the Myanmar military fired on peaceful protestors killing thousands. Thus far it appears our acts of solidarity  are helping; the Myanmar security forces have been relatively restrained.

Today, let’s all take three actions to follow the Myanmar military’s money and cut it off.

Action #1: Stop the flow of oil and gas money to the military

We join Justice For Myanmar in calling for all corporations to immediately stop bankrolling the Myanmar military. The people of Myanmar have mobilized against the dictatorship through a national campaign of civil disobedience and boycotts against military-owned companies. We must back up the peoples of Myanmar in their struggle.

Sign – and share – our petition demanding that Chevron stop bankrolling the Myanmar military.

As Myanmar’s generals look for revenues to prop up their new dictatorship following the February 1 coup, there’s one source of money they can count on: natural gas projects backed by foreign investors including Chevron, France’s Total, South Korea’s Posco, China’s CNOOC, Australia’s Woodbridge, and Malaysia’s Petronas. The Myanmar regime earns close to US$1 billion a year from natural gas sales.

Much of this money is not paid directly from oil companies to the government. It flows through Myanma Oil and Gas Enterprise (MOGE), a state-owned enterprise with deep links to the military’s business empire. Alarmingly, the recent military coup places MOGE and the rest of the government under direct military control.

Chevron is the largest U.S. corporate investor in Burma (Myanmar). In partnership with Total of France and the Burmese government-owned Myanma Oil and Gas Enterprise (MOGE), Chevron owns the Yadana gas field and pipeline crossing Karen State. In March 2015, Chevron entered into an additional production sharing contract with MOGE to explore in the Rakhine Basin off the coast of Rakhine State, the site of the Rohingya genocide.

Action #2: End the Myanmar military’s trade in #GenocideGems

Tell luxury jeweller Harry Winston (owned by Swatch) to stop selling jewellery with Burmese #GenocideGems.

For decades, Myanmar’s military has committed numerous war crimes against ethnic minorities in Burma including the Karen, Shan, and Kachin. The military has systematically burned down villages, gang-raped women and girls, and killed those who resist. Moreover, Myanmar now stands at the International Court of Justice on charges of genocide against the Rohingya. Together, we can demand that Jewellery retailers, such as Harry Winston, stop buying Burmese gems that help fund the military’s atrocities against the peoples of Myanmar.

Myanmar produces more than 90% of the world’s rubies and jade, and these stones command the highest prices on the international market. The military dominates the gemstone industry in Myanmar. Its extensive commercial interests in gemstone extraction and trade mean that the military profits when high-end jewelry retailers – like Harry Winston (owned by Swatch) – buy Burmese gems for their collections.

Action #3. Make a gift to build our movement

We can and must build our pressure on Myanmar’s military. Your actions have moved your governments to pass tough sanctions and successfully pressed companies, such as Western Union, online jeweler Angara, and Kirin brewery, to end their business partnerships with the Burmese military.

Your gifts will help us keep building the campaigns and tools that we need to take effective action together. Please click here to make a gift of $30, $60, $120, $250, or more.Together, we can build our movement to end the Myanmar military’s corrupt and brutal rule.Thank you so much,Simon Billenness, Executive Director

For the International Campaign for the Rohingya: Debbie Stothard, Jack Rendler, J. Mark Brinkmoeller, Joseph K. Grieboski, Simran Stuelpnagel, Michael DeLong, and Alyson Chadwick.

Harry Winston item featuring Burmese gems

Ruby and Diamond ring by Harry Winston

“A 20.25 carat oval-shaped Burmese ruby center stone with 28 round brilliant diamonds weighing a total of approximately 4.64 carats, set in platinum.”

For Further Reading:

Subscribe to Frontier Myanmar’s excellent daily coverage from inside the country.

How Oil and Gas Majors Bankroll the Myanmar Military Regime,” Justice For Myanmar, 8 February 2021

“Stakeholders press energy companies doing business with Myanmar to address Rohingya crisis,” International Campaign for the Rohingya blog, October 23, 2017

Will Myanmar’s ‘Genocide Gems’ Become the New Blood Diamonds?,” BusinessWeek,  October 17, 2018

“No Genocide Gems! Burmese Military Takes a Hit From Citizens Sanctions,” International Campaign for the Rohingya blog

Sanction Myanmar Military, Not Myanmar People,” Justice For Myanmar and Burma Campaign UK, 5 February 2021

Who Profits From a Coup? The Power and Greed of Senior General Min Aung Hlaing,” Justice For Myanmar, January 2021

“Dirty List” of companies doing business with the Myanmar military, Burma Campaign UK

Military Ltd,” Amnesty International, September 2020

Follow the Money: Coup – Day 10

It’s now Day 10 of the 2/1/21 Myanmar coup. Today, we invite you to follow the money of the Myanmar military.

We are still a trigger-point away from Burmese soldiers brutally cracking down on the pro-democracy demonstrators. In 1988, and again in 2007, the Myanmar military fired on peaceful protestors killing thousands. Thus far it appears our acts of solidarity for the Burmese on the streets are helping. The Myanmar security forces have been relatively restrained.

We join Justice For Myanmar in calling for all corporations to immediately stop bankrolling the Myanmar military. The people of Myanmar have mobilized against dictatorship through a national campaign of civil disobedience and boycotts against military-owned companies. We must back up the peoples of Myanmar in their struggle against their military dictators.

Today, let’s all take three actions to follow the Myanmar military’s money and cut it off.

Action #1: Stop the flow of oil and gas money to the military

Sign – and share – our petition demanding that Chevron stop bankrolling the Myanmar military.

As Myanmar’s generals look for revenues to prop up their new dictatorship following the February 1 coup, there’s one source of money they can count on: natural gas projects backed by foreign investors including Chevron, France’s Total, South Korea’s Posco, China’s CNOOC, Australia’s Woodbridge, and Malaysia’s Petronas. The Myanmar regime earns close to US$1 billion a year from natural gas sales.

Much of this money is not paid directly from oil companies to the government. It flows through Myanma Oil and Gas Enterprise (MOGE), a state-owned enterprise with deep links to the military’s business empire. Alarmingly, the recent military coup places MOGE and the rest of the government under direct military control.

Chevron is the largest U.S. corporate investor in Burma (Myanmar). In partnership with Total of France and the Burmese government-owned Myanma Oil and Gas Enterprise (MOGE), Chevron owns the Yadana gas field and pipeline crossing Karen State. In March 2015, Chevron entered into an additional production sharing contract with MOGE to explore in the Rakhine Basin off the coast of Rakhine State.

Action #2: End the Myanmar military’s trade in #GenocideGems

Tell luxury jeweller Harry Winston (owned by Swatch) to stop selling jewellery with Burmese #GenocideGems.

For decades, Myanmar’s military has committed numerous war crimes against ethnic minorities in Burma including the Karen, Shan, and Kachin. The military has systematically burned down villages, gang-raped women and girls, and killed those who resist. Moreover, Myanmar now stands at the International Court of Justice on charges of genocide against the Rohingya. Together, we can demand that Jewellery retailers, such as Harry Winston, stop buying Burmese gems that help fund the military’s atrocities against the peoples of Myanmar.

Myanmar produces more than 90% of the world’s rubies and jade, and these stones command the highest prices on the international market. The military dominates the gemstone industry in Myanmar. Its extensive commercial interests in gemstone extraction and trade mean that the military profits when high-end jewelry retailers – like Harry Winston (owned by Swatch) – buy Burmese gems for their collections.

Action #3. Make a Gift to Build Our Resistance to the Myanmar military

We can and must build our pressure on Myanmar’s military. Your actions have moved your governments to pass tough sanctions and successfully pressed companies, such as Western Union, online jeweler Angara, and Kirin brewery, to end their business partnerships with the Burmese military.

Your gifts will help us keep building the campaigns and tools that we need to take effective action together. Please click here to make a gift of $30, $60, $120, $250, or more.Together, we can build our movement to end the Myanmar military’s corrupt and brutal rule.Thank you so much,Simon Billenness, Executive Director

For the International Campaign for the Rohingya: Debbie Stothard, Jack Rendler, J. Mark Brinkmoeller, Joseph K. Grieboski, Simran Stuelpnagel, Michael DeLong, and Alyson Chadwick.

Harry Winston item featuring Burmese gems

Ruby and Diamond ring by Harry Winston

“A 20.25 carat oval-shaped Burmese ruby center stone with 28 round brilliant diamonds weighing a total of approximately 4.64 carats, set in platinum.”

For Further Reading:

How Oil and Gas Majors Bankroll the Myanmar Military Regime,” Justice For Myanmar, 8 February 2021

“Stakeholders press energy companies doing business with Myanmar to address Rohingya crisis,” International Campaign for the Rohingya blog, October 23, 2017

Will Myanmar’s ‘Genocide Gems’ Become the New Blood Diamonds?,” BusinessWeek,  October 17, 2018

“No Genocide Gems! Burmese Military Takes a Hit From Citizens Sanctions,” International Campaign for the Rohingya blog

Sanction Myanmar Military, Not Myanmar People,” Justice For Myanmar and Burma Campaign UK, 5 February 2021

Who Profits From a Coup? The Power and Greed of Senior General Min Aung Hlaing,” Justice For Myanmar, January 2021

“Dirty List” of companies doing business with the Myanmar military, Burma Campaign UK

Military Ltd,” Amnesty International, September 2020

Stop Chevron bankrolling the Myanmar military: Coup – Day 9

It’s now Day 9 of the 2/1/21 Myanmar coup.

When I woke this morning, I heard on NPR that the Myanmar military has started firing rubber bullets at protesters. We are a trigger-point away from Burmese soldiers brutally cracking down on the pro-democracy demonstrators. In 1988, and again in 2007, the Myanmar army fired on peaceful protestors killing thousands.

After that NPR news report, there was a message from NPR’s sponsor: Chevron. Chevron is the largest U.S. investor in Myanmar, providing billions in revenue for the Burmese regime. Moroever, Chevron’s operations have been found complicit in serious human rights violations in Karen State.

Sign – and share – our petition demanding that Chevron stop bankrolling the Myanmar military.

As Myanmar’s generals look for revenues to prop up their new dictatorship following the February 1 coup, there’s one source of money they can count on: natural gas projects backed by foreign investors including Chevron, France’s Total, South Korea’s Posco, China’s CNOOC, Australia’s Woodbridge, and Malaysia’s Petronas. The Myanmar regime earns close to US$1 billion a year from natural gas sales.

Much of this money is not paid directly from oil companies to the government. It flows through Myanma Oil and Gas Enterprise (MOGE), a state-owned enterprise with deep links to the military’s business empire. Alarmingly, the recent military coup places MOGE and the rest of the government under direct military control.

Chevron is the largest U.S. corporate investor in Burma (Myanmar). In partnership with Total of France and the Burmese government-owned Myanma Oil and Gas Enterprise (MOGE), Chevron owns the Yadana gas field and pipeline crossing Karen State. In March 2015, Chevron entered into an additional production sharing contract with MOGE to explore in the Rakhine Basin off the coast of Rakhine State.

Demand Chevron stop the flow of revenue to the Myanmar military.

We join Justice For Myanmar in calling for all businesses with commercial ties to MOGE to immediately stop bankrolling the Myanmar military. The people of Myanmar have mobilised against dictatorship through a national campaign of civil disobedience and boycotts against military-owned products. Even MOGE’s own staff are publicly protesting. We must back up the peoples of Myanmar in their struggle against the Myanmar military dictators.

Pressure on Chevron works. In 2017, after pressure from activist investors led by Azzad Asset Management, Chevron told the BBC that it would work for “a business environment that respects human rights”. But we need now to pressure Chevron until it stops bankrolling the Myanmar military.

Your signature on our petition to Chevron would be a powerful act of solidarity with the peoples of Myanmar.

Together, we can build our movement to end the Myanmar military’s corrupt and brutal rule.

Thank you so much,

Simon Billenness, Executive Director

For the International Campaign for the Rohingya: Debbie Stothard, Jack Rendler, J. Mark Brinkmoeller, Joseph K. Grieboski, Simran Stuelpnagel, Michael DeLong, and Alyson Chadwick.

ps. We can and must build our pressure on Myanmar’s military. Your gifts will help us keep building the campaigns and tools that we need to take effective action together. Please click here to make a gift of $30, $60, $120, $250, or more.

For Further Reading:

How Oil and Gas Majors Bankroll the Myanmar Military Regime,” Justice For Myanmar, 8 February 2021

“Stakeholders press energy companies doing business with Myanmar to address Rohingya crisis,” International Campaign for the Rohingya blog, October 23, 2017

“Chevron says it will push for Myanmar human rights,” BBC World Service, November 16, 2017

Sanction Myanmar Military, Not Myanmar People,” Justice For Myanmar and Burma Campaign UK, 5 February 2021

Myanmar Military Should End Its Use of Violence and Respect Democracy,” Joint statement of Myanmar civil society organizations, 1 February 2021

Who Profits From a Coup? The Power and Greed of Senior General Min Aung Hlaing,” Justice For Myanmar, January 2021

“Dirty List” of companies doing business with the Myanmar military, Burma Campaign UK

Military Ltd,” Amnesty International, September 2020

Justice for Myanmar – Justice For Myanmar is a campaign to provide a platform for those unjustly persecuted by the Myanmar military – regardless of class, religion, gender or ethnic identity in their efforts to seek justice and end military impunity in Myanmar. The campaign works to expose the Myanmar military’s businesses’ link to human rights violations across the country.

Let’s keep blood off the streets of Myanmar: Coup – Day 8

Each morning I wake up and immediately check the news. I breathe a sign of relief when I learn that the military has not brutally cracked down on the pro-democracy demonstrators. In 1988, and again in 2007, the Myanmar army brutally cracked down on peaceful protestors killing thousands.

Today, let’s all take the four actions outlined below to keep the blood of the Burmese people off the streets of Myanmar.

Action #1. Stay Informed

In ever increasing numbers, people are taking to the streets throughout Myanmar in opposition to the military coup. In the biggest protests since the 2007 Saffron Revolution, Myanmar’s new and globally connected #2121Generation is facing down the Burmese police and soldiers.

In cities around the world, people are holding protests outside Myanmar embassies and consulates. And in a truly inspiring action, Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh have circulated pictures of themselves raising the three-fingered salute in solidarity with their fellow Burmese inside Myanmar.

This is a very fluid and dangerous situation. Follow the news on social media with the hashtags: #WhatsHappeningInMyanmar #CivilDisobedienceMovement. Excellent coverage from inside Myanmar is also available daily from Frontier Myanmar. Read their website and sign up for their daily emails as long as the military allows them to stay open.

Action #2. Take Action: Lobby Your Government

Demand that your government impose tough sanctions on the Myanmar military until it reverses its coup and restores the democratically elected civilian government. Because of your emails and calls from around the world, the Biden Administration is now considering what sanctions to impose on the Myanmar military to roll back its coup against the civilian government.Click here to urge U.S. President Joe Biden impose tough sanctions on the Myanmar military.

If you have already signed the petition, share it with your friends. If so, please email, message, or text ten or more of your friends to ask them to join you. Send them this short link to the petition: http://bit.ly/BidenSanctionMyanmar

Action #3. Take Action: Impose Your Citizen Sanctions on the Myanmar Military

Thanks to your actions, Kirin Brewing just announced that it was ending its business partnerships with the Myanmar military. This is a clear success of your campaign of direct citizen sanctions on the Myanmar military’s business empire.

We stand in solidarity with the Burmese people. We join with Justice For Myanmar and Burma Campaign UK in calling for tough sanctions on the Myanmar military and not the Myanmar people. Please take action today to impose your own citizen sanctions on the Myanmar military through these following actions.

Tell luxury jeweller Harry Winston (owned by Swatch) to stop selling jewellery with Burmese #GenocideGems.

Demand Facebook remove all Myanmar military accounts from its platform.

Tell Razer to remove Lim Kaling from its board unless he ends his business with the Myanmar military.

According to Justice For Myanmar, the army chief Senior General Min Aung Hlaing may have executed this coup to protect his power and his financial interests. Before the coup, Senior General Min Aung Hlaing was required in June 2021 to transfer power to a new Commander-in-Chief. Min Aung Hlaing and his family have a lot to lose after having amassed personal wealth through the abuse of his public position as head of the military.

Action #4. Make a Gift to Build Our Resistance to the Myanmar military

We can and must build our pressure on Myanmar’s military. Your actions have moved your governments to pass tough sanctions and successfully pressed companies, such as Western Union, online jeweler Angara, and Kirin brewery, to end their business partnerships with the Burmese military.

Your gifts will help us keep building the campaigns and tools that we need to take effective action together. Please click here to make a gift of $30, $60, $120, $250, or more.

Together, we can build our movement to end the Myanmar military’s corrupt and brutal rule.

Thank you so much,

Simon Billenness, Executive Director

For the International Campaign for the Rohingya: Debbie Stothard, Jack Rendler, J. Mark Brinkmoeller, Joseph K. Grieboski, Simran Stuelpnagel, Michael DeLong, and Alyson Chadwick.

For Further Reading:

Sanction Myanmar Military, Not Myanmar People,” Justice For Myanmar and Burma Campaign UK, 5 February 2021

Kirin Ends Partnership With Myanmar Military After the Army’s Genocide and Coup D’Etat,” International Campaign for the Rohingya, 5 February 2021

Myanmar Military Should End Its Use of Violence and Respect Democracy,” Joint statement of Myanmar civil society organizations, 1 February 2021

Who Profits From a Coup? The Power and Greed of Senior General Min Aung Hlaing,” Justice For Myanmar, January 2021

“Dirty List” of companies doing business with the Myanmar military, Burma Campaign UK

Military Ltd,” Amnesty International, September 2020

Justice for Myanmar – Justice For Myanmar is a campaign to provide a platform for those unjustly persecuted by the Myanmar military – regardless of class, religion, gender or ethnic identity in their efforts to seek justice and end military impunity in Myanmar. The campaign works to expose the Myanmar military’s businesses’ link to human rights violations across the country.

The economic interests of the Myanmar military,” United Nations Independent International Fact-Finding Mission, September 2019

Facebook Allowing Burma Military to Recruit For and Fund Genocide,” Burma Campaign UK, 9 January 2021

Will Myanmar’s ‘Genocide Gems’ Become the New Blood Diamonds?,” BusinessWeek,  October 17, 2018

“No Genocide Gems! Burmese Military Takes a Hit From Citizens Sanctions,” International Campaign for the Rohingya blog

Cloudflare Must Terminate Its Services For the Myanmar Military

International Campaign for the Rohingya & Burma Campaign UK

For Immediate Release: 8 February 2021

Cloudflare Must Terminate Its Services For the Myanmar Military

In the wake of the Myanmar military’s February 1st coup d’etat, Burma Campaign UK and International Campaign for the Rohingya today demanded American web services company Cloudflare terminate its services for the Myanmar military.

Cloudflare provides website services for the military controlled Ministry of Home Affairs, and for the military-controlled Burmese police force, which has been firing water cannons at peaceful protestors today. Cloudflare must introduce a policy of not working for the Myanmar military, including military controlled companies.  

“Following the attack on U.S. legislators at the U.S. Capitol, Facebook and Twitter suspended US President Donald Trump for inciting violence. At the same time, using its Cloudflare-protected websites, the Myanmar security forces planned, promoted, and executed, not only its February 1st, 2021, military coup, but also its genocide of the Rohingya and numerous other atrocities across the country,” stated Simon Billenness, Executive Director of the International Campaign for the Rohingya.

In the past, Cloudflare has terminated its services for the American neo-Nazi Daily Stormer website and the 8chan website, used by American white supremacists responsible for the January 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol.

“Cloudflare should not be providing services for the Burmese military or for military controlled companies,” stated Mark Farmaner, Director of Burma Campaign UK. ”No company which has a client such as the Myanmar military, which is holding coups and is involved in genocide, can claim to have any kind of credible human rights or social responsibility policies.”

“Cloudflare dropped as a client Stormfront for supporting the past genocide by the Nazis. Yet. Cloudflare continues to protect the websites of the Myanmar military as it executes its ongoing genocide of the Rohingya people in Burma,” stated Simon Billenness.

In December 2018 Burma Campaign UK placed Cloudflare on its ‘Dirty List’ of companies linked to Burma’s military. Cloudflare have not responded to correspondence from Burma Campaign UK but defended working for Min Aung Hlaing providing services for his website when approached by media. Min Aung Hlaing’s personal website appears to no longer be protected by Cloudflare but it is not clear if Min Aung Hlaing switched providers or if he was dropped by Cloudflare. There is no apparent logic to why Cloudflare might drop Min Aung Hlaing as a client but keep working for parts of the military under his control.

In 2016 and 2017, Min Aung Hlaing ordered major military offensives against the Rohingya Muslim minority in Burma. The main target of the military offensives was children. Almost 800,000 Rohingya fled to Bangladesh. The Burmese military and security forces used horrific violations against the Rohingya, including mass rape, including of children, and killing thousands of people.

On 17th July the US government designated Min Aung Hlaing as being responsible for gross human rights violations and banned Min Aung Hlaing from visiting America. United Nations investigators have said doing any form of business with the military is indefensible.

Burma Campaign UK publishes a ‘Dirty List’ of international companies doing business with the military. More than 100 are listed. The ‘Dirty List’ is available here.

For more information contact:

Simon Billenness

Executive Director, International Campaign for the Rohingya

Campaign Director, No Business With Genocide

Mobile (US): 617-596-6158

Twitter: @Rohingya_ICR

simon.billenness@rohingyacampaign.org

www.rohingyacampaign.org

Mark Farmaner

Director of Burma Campaign UK

Mobile (UK): +44 (0794) 1239640

Twitter: @MarkFarmaner

mark.farmaner@burmacampaign.org.uk

www.burmacampaign.org.uk