increase awareness to a country in which some of the worst human rights violations occur day after day
Burma, also known as Myanmar, is ruled by a military junta which suppresses almost all dissent and wields absolute power in the face of international condemnation and sanctions.
The generals and the army stand accused of gross human rights abuses, including the forcible relocation of civilians and the widespread use of forced labour, which includes children.
Prominent pro-democracy leader and Nobel Peace Prize winner, Aung San Suu Kyi, has had various restrictions placed on her activities since the late 1980s.
Her party, the National League for Democracy, won a landslide victory in 1990 in Burma's first multi-party elections for 30 years, but has never been allowed to govern.
The armed forces - and former rebels co-opted by the government - have been accused of large-scale trafficking in heroin, of which Burma is a major exporter. Prostitution and HIV/Aids are major problems.
The largest group is the Burman people, who are ethnically related to the Tibetans and the Chinese. Burman dominance over Karen, Shan, Rakhine, Mon, Chin, Kachin and other minorities has been the source of considerable ethnic tension and has fuelled intermittent separatist rebellions.
Military offensives against insurgents have uprooted many thousands of civilians.
A largely rural, densely forested country, Burma is the world's largest exporter of teak and a principal source of jade, pearls, rubies and sapphires. It is endowed with extremely fertile soil and has important offshore oil and gas deposits. However, its people remain very poor and are getting poorer.
The country is festooned with the symbols of Buddhism. Thousands of pagodas throng its ancient towns; these have been a focus for an increasingly important tourism industry.
But while tourism has been a magnet for foreign investment, its benefits have hardly touched the people.
1. We must cease the ongoing atrocities that Burmese citizens must face every day.
2. The State Peace & Development Council (SPDC) has NO right to control the lives of an entire country - including that of it's true leader, Aung San Suu Kyi.
3. Burma remains one of the most impoverished nations in Asia!