Report on the Human Rights Situation in Burma (January – March, 2011)

The periodic report of the Network for Human Rights Documentation – Burma (ND-Burma), documents the human rights situation in Burma during the period January – March 2011. ND-Burma periodic reports provide up-to-date information on human rights violations (HRVs) and highlight pressing issues and trends within the country. The information gathered covers 16 categories of human rights violations (HRVs)1, documented in all 14 states and regions across Burma.

In the reporting period, signifi cant political developments have taken place. On 31 January the new Parliament, elected through a fundamentally fl awed election held in November last year, convened for the fi rst time. On 30 March, Senior General Than Shwe offi cially dissolved the State Peace and Development Council (SPDC) to transfer authority to the nominally civilian parliament. However, it is evident from ND-Burma’s documentation that despite these structural changes, human rights abuses committed by the military regime continue unabated.

In the past six months, ND-Burma has released two reports that focused on human rights violations and the 7 November 2010 elections. On 8 November 2010, ND-Burma released a report on pre-election conditions entitled “Intimidation, Imprisonment and Repression: the Road to Military Victory in the 2010 Elections.”2 The report documented the military regime’s use of intimidation and coercion and other actions constituting violations of human rights to force votes for the military regime-backed party, the USDP. The human rights situationleading up to and following the elections was reported in ND-Burma’s report, “Human Rights Violations in Burma’s 2010 Elections,”3 released on 9 April 2011. The report covered a wide range of election-related HRVs throughout the country, and illustrated that the elections in Burma fell far short of any international standards for free and fair elections.