Tribals in Meghalaya condemn Myanmar crackdown

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Mawphlang, Meghalaya, Oct 6 (UNI) Thousands of tribals from Khasi, Jaintia and Garo districts in Meghalaya today observed a two-minute silence at a Dorbar Ri (People's Parliament), as a mark of respect to Buddhist monks killed by the military junta in Myanmar.

The People's Parliament held outside the ancient scared groves, was convened here by the Khasi Syiems(Chief), Jaintia Dolois (Chieftains) and Nokmas (Clan Chieftains). They urged India and China to influence the military junta to immediately restore democracy in Myanmar.

''We are seriously concerned over the military crackdown on innocent pro-democracy people and Buddhist monks in our neighbouring country. Therefore, we urge the Indian and Chinese governments to influence the dictatorial Burmese government to immediately restore democracy in Myanmar,'' NCP Rajya Sabha member and Chairman of Rajya Sabha Grassroots Democracy Advisory Council Robert Kharshiing said.

Condemning the military crackdown on Buddhist monks, Mr Kharshiing urged Burmese General Than Shwe to immediately release Nobel Peace Prize winner Aung San Suu Kyi.

India's North Eastern states of Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland, Manipur and Mizoram share about 1,643 km of its border with Myanmar.

The people's Parliament' 25 km from Shillong, also urged the world community to prevent any violent reaction from the military dictatorship.

Myanmar pro-democracy activists, who were attending the people's Parliament to drum support for restoration of democracy in the neighbouring nation, have also appealed to the tribals of Meghalaya to support their cause.

''We are neighbours, we need the support of the people of democratic India to influence junta to immediately restore democracy in our homeland,'' Neng Boi, a member of the Women's League of Burma said.

The People's Parliament is considered sacred and divine by the tribals here. It is strictly non-political and the proceedings are conducted with great decorum and dignity.

UNI

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