We must stop the flow of money to MOGE

Stop funding MOGE

Margaret Mead once said, “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed, organized citizens can change the world; indeed it’s the only thing that ever has.”

You proved that right last week when you successfully pressed luxury jeweller Harry Winston to stop buying gems from Myanmar. This week, let’s stay focused on the oil companies Chevron, TotalEnergies, and POSCO. Together, we can stop the funding to MOGE.

Recently leaked documents published by Justice for Myanmar provide conclusive evidence that Senior General Min Aung Hlaing is personally concerned that Myanmar’s oil and gas revenues (MOGE) keep flowing to the junta.

The Myanmar military receives about half of its funding from oil and gas revenues. Cutting this flow of blood money from the oil companies Chevron, Total, and Posco is crucial to ending the army’s reign of terror. This is also fundamental to what No Business with Genocide strives to do.

If you have already signed this petition to Chevron demanding it stop funding MOGE and the Myanmar military.

Please follow up by posting protest messages on the social media of Chevron and Total. Here’s a sample protest message for you to adapt and post.

I will boycott you until you stop the flow of money from the Yadana Project in Myanmar to the Burmese military junta.

Like their Facebook pages and post protest messages

Let’s make a point of posting on the social media of Chevron and TotalEnergies every day until they stop funding the Myanmar military.

Can you join us on World Genocide Day?

World Genocide Day

Thursday, December 9, 2021, is World Genocide Day. Friday, December 10, 2021, is World Human rights Day. On Thursday, we plan to march from the US Mission to the UN to the Harry Winston New York City headquarters where we will give them our petitions demanding they stop funding the Myanmar military. On World Human Rights Day, that same brutal military is planning a gem fair in Myanmar. They are running out of money. Our pressure is working we need to keep it up. Can you join us?

We will meet up at the US Mission to the UN and march to Harry Winston.

What: Protest Harry Winston/Swatch for selling #GenocideGems
Where: 799 United Nations Plz, New York, NY 10017
When: Thursday, December 9, 2021, at 10:00 am

Click here to view our event page for the rally. If you would like to attend, please let me know so I can keep you up to date on any changes to the event. You can also share it with your friends and family. If you know people who are not in NYC but would like to take part, please email me.

Sign -our petition to luxury jeweler Harry Winston before we deliver it to their headquarters.

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.

Sign – and share – our petition to luxury jeweler Harry Winston demanding that it stop buying gems from Myanmar.

You can also:

  • Make an appointment at a Harry Winston store and let them know how you feel about their sale of #GenocideGems.
  • Post on their social media channels! Copy this message 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. You can use this message (adapt as you see fit).

I refuse to buy your jewelry and watches 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

Help us help the Chin

The Myanmar military is deploying tens of thousands of troops and heavy weapons to Chin State northern Myanmar. These tactics are ominously reminiscent of those the army employed in its genocidal attacks against the Rohingya in 2016 and 2017. The Chin people cannot wait.

In response, U.S. State Department Counselor Derek Chollet urged Singapore to help restrict the Myanmar military’s access to foreign funds. Singapore is one of Myanmar’s largest foreign investors and its banks hold junta assets.

We can help stop more atrocities in Myanmar. We are doing this by pressing our governments and our corporations to end the flow of money to the Myanmar military. We’ve always known that we’ll be in this struggle for the long haul. With that in mind, would you make a sustaining gift each month to support our crucial work?

Click here to make a monthly sustaining gift of $10, $25, $50, or $100.

Thank you for your previous generous gifts. These past few months, you have stepped up your donations and helped build our campaigns that hit back hard against the Myanmar military.

Currently, we raise just over $1,700 per month through recurring gifts. Would you turn your one-time gift into a recurring donation to help put us over $2,500 in steady monthly support?

Please click here to make a monthly sustaining gift of $10, $25, $50, or $100 to build our pressure on Burma’s military.

Your sustaining monthly gift would help build our campaigns that both support the Civil Disobedience Movement and hit Myanmar’s military hard.

Your gift will build our grassroots movement to end the atrocities and the repression of the Burmese army. Your support will fund our campaigns to:

  • lobby governments worldwide to impose sanctions on Burma’s generals and their business empire;
  • put consumer, shareholder, and media pressure on corporations – such as Facebook, Cloudflare, Harry Winston, and Chevron – to end their business partnerships with Burma’s army;
  • organize students and faculty to press their campus to step up and join the movement to end genocide in Burma and throughout the world;
  • promote “end genocide” bills in cities and states globally.

To build up our campaigns, please make a monthly sustaining gift of $10, $25, $50, or $100.

Thank you so much for your time and your support.

Learn more about the #BurmaBill here.

#Stop GenocideGems from funding the Myanmar Military

#GenocideGems

You may have heard of #BloodDiamonds, but how much do you know about #GenocideGems? Myanmar produces more than 90% of the world’s rubies and jade, and these stones command the highest prices on the international market. Because it dominates Burma’s gemstone industry, the Myanmar military profits when high-end jewelry retailers – like Harry Winston (owned by Swatch) – buy Burmese gems for their collections.

Today, let’s take four actions to hold Harry Winston – and its owner Swatch – to account. They need to stop profiting from the sale of #GenocideGems.

Action #1: Share our petition to Harry Winston

Since you’ve already signed our petition to Harry Winston, please share the petition with your friends and family. Use this link.

Action #2: Post on the social media of 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://bit.ly/HarryWinston_NoGenocideGems

Use the links below to the jeweler’s social media.

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.

Action #3: Make an appointment to protest at your local Harry Winston store

In addition to signing the petition, would you follow up by visiting one of Harry Winston’s stores?

Click on this link to make an appointment at one of Harry Winston’s swanky stores. If you can turn up for the appointment, ask to see the jewelry with rubies. Then explain to the store manager why you would never buy from Harry Winston as long as it buys gems that profit the Myanmar military.

Breaking! One of our awesome activists in the UK just visited Harry Winston’s London store. Let’s make sure Harry Winston hears from us at every store worldwide!

Action #4: Attend our virtual comedy night. 

On September 16 at 8:00 pm, some of the funniest people on the planet will come together to support our work on behalf of the Burmese people. You can learn more about the event here and you can buy your tickets here.  This is a virtual event.

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. We can stop the sale of #GenocideGems.

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. Learn more about our other actions for the Rohingya here.

Harry Winston item featuring Burmese gems

For Further Reading:

Talking to Your Treasurer About Genocide

How can you make your university take action to end genocide?

One way would be to press your university to use the power of its investments.

Educational institutions invest trillions of dollars, primarily through their endowments. As shareholders, universities are partial owners of thousands of publicly traded companies. Through those ownership stakes, unviersities can put pressure on corporations to stop doing business with governments engaged in genocide. This kind of shareholder activism can be more powerful than selling – or divesting – stock in companies.

Does your university own stock in Chevron? It likely does because Chevron is a very widely held company. For two years, shareholders of Chevron have filed a shareholder resolution putting pressure on the oil company, the largest U.S. investor in Burma (Myanmar), to adopt a policy of not doing business with government engaged in genocide or crimes against humanity. In 2017, that resolution received the votes of approximately 6% of shareholders at Chevron’s annual shareholder meeting. Since then, it is reported that Chevron has raised issues of human rights with the Burmese government.

International Campaign for the Rohingya is working with shareholders owning over $50 billion in assets to put pressure on all of the oil companies in Burma. This shareholder group has also pressed major jewelry retailers not to buy gems that profit the Burmese army.

How can you successfully press your university to join the growing number of shareholders taking action to end genocide? You can start by asking your university treasurer some key questions.

  • What stocks does the university own? Does it own Chevron?

Many educational institutions, especially public universities, make public their stock holdings. Many others will simply provide that information on request. Some will only reveal their holdings after feeling pressure from a campaign asking for disclosure.

Zero in on your university’s direct holdings of shares. Those are shares that your university owns outright and can vote in favor of shareholder resolutions such as the one at Chevron.

  • Does the university have a policy guiding how it votes its shares?

Some universities have developed a policy guiding how they vote their shares on resolutions raising environmental, social, and governances (ESG) issues. Ask for a copy of the current policy and request that it include a provision that the university vote in favor of resolutions asking companies to adopt a policy of not doing business with governments engaged in genocide or crimes against humanity.

  • How has the university voted its shares in the past?

Some universities publish a report showing how they voted on each shareholder resolution. Whether this is public or not, find out whether your university held Chevron stock in 2017 and, if so, how it voted those shares on the resolution pressing the company to adopt a policy of not doing business with governments engaged in genocide or crimes against humanity.

  • Does the university work with other shareholders to promote corporate responsibility?

Some universities are members of US SIF – The Forum for Sustainable and Reponsible Investment, the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility, the Principles for Responsible Investment, or the Council of Institutional Investors. If your university is a member, ask what help and resources they are receiving to address issues concerning ending genocide.

  • Would the university adopt a formal policy of using its investments to help end genocide?

Ask your university to join the growing “No Business With Genocide” campaign. International Campaign for the Rohingya is working with a growing coalition of investors and NGOs. We are ready to work with you and your university to develop policies and practices that help end the genocide of the Rohingya.

  • How can students and faculty influence the university’s investment policies and practices?

Some universities, such as Harvard, have an advisory committee on shareholder responsibility that helps develop policies and practices. Ask to participate.

If your university lacks such an avenue to influence its investments, launch a campaign to pass a resolution in your student government, faculty council, and/or board of trustees. Develop petitions and hold rallies. Meet with your university administration. Use every pressure point to persuade your university to step up and help end genocide.

The Responsible Endowments Coalition publishes how-to guides  for students and faculty on university endowmentsdivestment, and shareholder advocacy. Read them to prepare yourselves on how to best influence your university to help end genocide.