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Open Letter: Enhancing Australian Sanctions for Myanmar

November 2nd, 2023  •  Author:   414 Organization Worldwide  •  11 minute read
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2 November, 2023
Senator the Hon. Penny Wong
Minister for Foreign Affairs
Senate
Parliament House
Canberra ACT 2600
Via email: [email protected], [email protected]

Dear Minister Wong,

Re: Enhancing Australian Sanctions for Myanmar

We, the undersigned 414 organisations, commend the Australian Government’s imposition of targeted sanctions on 16 individuals and 2 entities in Myanmar on February 1st, 2023.

To meaningfully impact the junta’s financial resources and demonstrate solidarity with Myanmar’s pursuit of federal democracy, we urge Australia to amplify its sanctions efforts, aligning with our global democratic allies. Currently, Australian sanctions account for just 2% of international sanctions against Myanmar.

The junta’s actions have resulted in the loss of over 4,000 thousands of lives, the unjust detention of tens of thousands who oppose the attempted military takeover, and widespread reports of torture and conflict-related sexual violence. This crisis has led to mass displacement, both within Myanmar and as refugees to neighbouring countries.

Urgent measures are vital to curb junta access to foreign revenue, impede their ability to continue harming civilians, and ensure accountability for genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity. The Myanmar Campaign Network and the undersigned organisations strongly reiterate our call for sanctions on the following high-value targets, covering whole networks of companies, their directors, and shareholders, in coordination with Australia’s democratic allies:

State-Owned Enterprises: Many of these entities yield significant revenue for the junta, especially in the natural resource sectors, while state-owned banks facilitate payments for the junta, including for the purchase of arms. Some of the state-owned companies have links to Australian-sanctioned military conglomerates Myanma Economic Holdings Public Company Limited (MEHL) and Myanmar Economic Corporation Limited (MEC). Key targets include: Myanma Oil and Gas Enterprise (MOGE), Myanmar Mining Enterprises No. 1 & 2 (ME-1 and ME-2), Myanmar Pearl Enterprise (MPE), Myanma Gems Enterprise (MGE), Myanma Timber Enterprise (MTE), Myanma Petrochemical Enterprise (MPE), Myanma Foreign Trade Bank (MFTB), Myanma Investment and Commercial Bank (MICB) and Myanma Economic Bank (MEB), together with their managing directors.

Banking sector and Cronies: Crony companies provide sources of revenue for the junta and, through crony banks, facilitate payments for the junta and its members. International Group of Entrepreneurs (IGE), and its linked bank, United Amara Bank (UAB), Kanbawza Group of Companies (KBZ Group) and its bank, KBZ Bank, Ayeyar Hinthar Group of Companies, and its bank A Bank (Ayeyarwaddy Farmers Development Bank), and Htoo Group of Companies, and its bank, Asia Green Development Bank (AGD Bank), among others, should be targeted for sanctions.

Arms manufacture and procurement: Entities and individuals involved in the manufacture and procurement of arms should be targeted for sanctions including the Office of the Chief of Defence Industries (OCDI), the Directorate of Procurement, the Office of the Quartermaster General, and the Myanmar military’s network of private arms brokers, including Dynasty Group of Companies, International Gateways Group of Companies, Myanmar Chemical & Machinery Group, Sky Aviator, Star Sapphire Group, and Synpex Shwe.

Aviation Supply Chain: Entities and individuals that facilitate the importation, storage, and distribution of jet fuel to Myanmar’s military should be targeted for sanctions, including Shoon Group of Companies (formerly Asia Sun Group of Companies). Disrupting jet fuel access will impede air strikes on civilians and limit military mobility.

Junta Leadership: Sanctions should be imposed on junta-appointed ministers, current and former State Administration Council (SAC) members, and their immediate families.

Union Election Commission: The junta-instated Commission and its officials should be sanctioned, underscoring Australia’s commitment to fair elections and democracy.

We believe Australia should join its democratic allies in coordinated efforts to impose targeted sanctions on entities and individuals crucial to financing and sustaining the junta’s actions. Such collective action can significantly contribute to restoring democracy and alleviating suffering in Myanmar.

We appreciate your dedication to democracy, human rights, and social justice. We hope that the Australian Government will take principled steps to address the Myanmar crisis effectively, reaffirming Australia’s commitment to these values.

Yours faithfully,

Myanmar Campaign Network and 414 organisations listed below, including 6 organisations whose names have been withheld for confidentiality.

Australia

  1. Action Against Myanmar Military Coup (Sydney)
  2. Anglican Diocese of Melbourne
  3. Anti-Myanmar Military Dictatorship Network (Australia)
  4. Australia Myanmar Institute for Democracy, Human Rights and Peace
  5. Australian Centre for International Justice
  6. Australian Council For International Development (ACFID)
  7. Australian Council of Trade Unions (ACTU)
  8. Australian Education Union (AEU)
  9. Australian Nursing and Midwifery Federation (ANMF)
  10. Australian South East Asian Network – ASEAN
  11. Community and Public Sector Union (CPSU-SPSF)
  12. Construction and General Division-CFMEU
  13. Finance Sector Union of Australia (FSU)
  14. Independent Education Union of Australia (IEU)
  15. National Tertiary Education Union (NTEU)
  16. NSW Nurses and Midwives Association (NSWNMA)
  17. Prosecute; don’t perpetrate
  18. Publish What You Pay Australia
  19. SEARCH Foundation
  20. Shop, Distributive and Allied Employees’ Association (SDA)
  21. Transparency International Australia
  22. Union Aid Abroad-APHEDA
  23. United Workers Union (UWU)
  24. Uniting Church in Australia, Synod of Victoria and Tasmania
  25. Youth Heart Beams

CRPH/NUG Support Group Australia:

Australian Capital Territory

  1. Australian Karen Organisation (AKO) ACT
  2. Mon National Council (MNC)

New South Wales

  1. All Burma Student Democratic Front (ABSDF) – Australia Branch
  2. All Young Burmese League (AYBL)
  3. Australian Karen Organisation (AKO)
  4. Burma Lawyer Council (BLC)
  5. Burmese Community Development Collaboration (BCDC)
  6. Burmese Community Support Group (BCSG)
  7. Burmese Medical Association Australia (BMAA)
  8. Industrial Training Centre (ITC) Family Sydney
  9. Justice for Myanmar, Hope and Peace
  10. Kachin Association Australia
  11. Matu Chin Community
  12. Mindat Chin Community
  13. Mon National Council (MNC)
  14. Myanmar Community Coffs Harbour (MCC)
  15. Myanmar Engineering Association of Australia (MEAA)
  16. Myanmar Professionals Association Australia (MPAA)
  17. Myanmar Students’ Association Australia (MSAA) NSW Chapter
  18. NLD Solidarity Association (NSW chapter)
  19. NSW Karenni (Kayah) Communities
  20. Sydney Friends for Myanmar Unity
  21. We Pledge CDM (Australia)
  22. Zomi Association Australia Inc.

Northern Territory

  1. Australia Burma Friendship Association Queensland State
  2. Australian Karen Organisation (AKO) Queensland Chapter
  3. Burma Lawyers’ Council (BLC)
  4. Myanmar Students’ Association Australia (MSAA)
  5. NLD Solidarity Association (Australia)
  6. Patriotic War Veterans of Burma (PWVB)
  7. Queensland Kachin Community (QKC)
  8. Queensland Myanmar Youth Collective (QMYC)
  9. Queensland Rohingya Community
  10. Zomi Community Queensland

South Australia

  1. Burmese Community – South Australia
  2. Chin Community – South Australia
  3. Falam Community – South Australia
  4. Karen Community – South Australia
  5. Matu Chin Community – South Australia
  6. Mindat Community – South Australia
  7. Mizo Community – South Australia
  8. Zo Community – South Australia
  9. Zomi Community – South Australia

Tasmania

  1. Bamar Community Tasmania
  2. Chin Community Tasmania
  3. Kayin Community Tasmania

Victoria

  1. Anti-Myanmar Dictatorship Movement
  2. Anti-Myanmar Military Dictatorship Network (AMMON)
  3. Australian Burmese Muslim Organisation
  4. Australian Chin Community (Eastern Melbourne Inc)
  5. Burmese Welfare Association of Victoria (BWAV)
  6. Karenni Community
  7. Mon Families Group
  8. Myanmar Democracy and Peace Committee (Australia)
  9. NLD Solidarity Association (Australia)
  10. Shwe Youth Democratic Alliance (SYDA)
  11. Victoria Myanmar Muslim Community Inc.
  12. Victorian Myanmar Youth (VMY)
  13. Zomi Association Australia Inc.

Western Australia

  1. Australian Karen Organisation (AKO) WA Chapter
  2. BMT Counselling
  3. Chin Community of Western Australia Inc.
  4. Chin Youth Organization
  5. Institute of Chin Affairs
  6. Kachin Association of Australia WA Inc.
  7. Karenni/Kayah Community
  8. Myanmar Democratic Movement (MDM)
  9. Perth Myanmar Youth Network
  10. Pyit Taing Htaung Social Club
  11. Red Campaign Nirvana Exhortation Group
  12. Remonya Association of WA (Mon Community)
  13. Western Australia Myanmar Community (WAMC)
  14. Western Australia Myanmar Democratic Network (WAMDN)

Global Unions

  1. Building and Wood Worker’s International (BWI)
  2. Public Services International (PSI)
  3. UNI Finance Global Union
  4. UNI Global Union

International

  1. ALTSEAN-Burma
  2. ASEAN Parliamentarians for Human Rights
  3. Blood Money Campaign
  4. Free Rohingya Coalition
  5. Global Movement for Myanmar Democracy
  6. Global Myanmar Spring Revolution
  7. International Campaign for the Rohingya
  8. Justice For Myanmar
  9. Myanmar Refugee Policy Group
  10. Progressive Voice
  11. Women Activists Myanmar

Global Strike Coordination Body

  1. 5/ of Zaya State Strike
  2. Action Committee of Basic Education Students (ACBES)
  3. All Aung Myay Thar San Schools Strike Force
  4. Alliance of Students’ Union – Yangon (ASU-Yangon)
  5. Anti-coup Forces Coordination Committee (ACFCC-Mandalay)
  6. Anti-Junta Alliance Yangon-AJAY
  7. A-Yar-Taw People Strike
  8. CDM Medical Network (CDMMN)
  9. Chaung Oo Township Youth Strike Committee
  10. Civil Information Network (CIN)
  11. Coalition Strike Committee – Dawei
  12. Dawei Youths Revolutionary Movement Strike Committee
  13. Depayin Township Revolution Steering Committee
  14. Ethnic Youth General Strike Committee (Mandalay)
  15. General Strike Collaboration Committee (GSCC)
  16. General Strike Committee of Basic and Higher Education (GSCBHE)
  17. Basic Education General Strike Committee (BEGSC)
  18. Basic Education Worker Unions – Steering Committee (BEWU-SC)
  19. Representative Committee of University Teacher Associations (RC of UTAs)
  20. Kachin Student Union
  21. Kalay Township Strike Force
  22. KantBaLu Strike Committee
  23. Kyain Seikgyi Spring Revolution Leading Committee
  24. Latpadaung Region Strike Committee
  25. LGBT Alliance
  26. LGBT Alliance Myanmar (Kalay Region)
  27. LGBT Alliance Myanmar (Kyaukse Region)
  28. LGBT Community Yangon
  29. LGBT Union – Mandalay
  30. Monywa LGBT Strike
  31. Magway People’s Revolution Committee
  32. Mandalay-Based University Students’ Unions (MDY_SUs)
  33. Mandalay Medical Family (MFM)
  34. Mandalay Strike Force (MSF)
  35. Chanmyatharzi Township People’s Strike
  36. Co-operative University Mandalay Students’ Strike
  37. Daung Sitthe Strike
  38. Industries Strike
  39. Maharaungmyay Township People’s Strike
  40. Mandalar University Students’ Strike
  41. Mandalay Alliance Coalition Strike
  42. Mandalay-based People’s Strike
  43. Mandalay Youth Strike
  44. Multi-Religions Strike
  45. Myanmar Institute of Information Technology Students’ Strike
  46. Mya Taung Strike
  47. No.12 Basic Education Branch High School (Maharaungmyay) Students’ Union
  48. Samgha Sammaga-Mandalay
  49. Seinpann Strike
  50. MayMyo Strike Force
  51. Monywa-Amyint Road Strike Leading Committee
  52. Monywa People’s Strike Steering Committee
  53. All Burma Federation of Student Unions (Monywa District)
  54. Civil Society Organizations Coordination Committee (Monywa)
  55. Former Political Prisoners and New Generation Group – Monywa
  56. National League for Democracy (Monywa Township)
  57. Network of University Student Unions – Monywa
  58. Thakhin Kodaw Mhine Peace Network (Monywa)
  59. The 88 Generation Peace and Open Society (Monywa)
  60. Myanmar Labor Alliance (MLA)
  61. Myaung Youth Network
  62. Myingyan Civilian Movement Committee
  63. Pale Township People’s Strike Steering Committee
  64. Pyi Gyi Tagon Strike Force
  65. Shwe Pan Kone People’s Strike Steering Committee
  66. Taze Strike Committee
  67. Twitter Team for Revolution (TTFR)
  68. University Students’ Unions Alumni Force
  69. Wetlet Revolution Leading Committee
  70. Women Alliance Burma (WAB)
  71. Chindwin (West) Villages Women Strike
  72. Dawei ( Ashaetaw) Women Strike
  73. Depayin Women Strike
  74. Gangaw Women Strike
  75. Kalay Women Strike
  76. Mandalay Women Strike
  77. Monywa-Amyint Road Women Strike
  78. Monywa Women Strike
  79. Taze Women Strike
  80. Thayat Chaung Women Strike
  81. Wetlet Township Women Strike
  82. Yangon Women Strike
  83. White Coat Society Yangon (WCSY)
  84. Yadanabon University Students’ Union (YDNBUSU)
  85. Yasakyo Township People’s Strike Steering Committee
  86. Yinmarpin and Salingyi All Villages Strike Committee

Czech Republic

  1. Educational Initiatives Prague
  2. Integria, z.u. Prague

France

  1. Doh Atu – Ensemble pour le Myanmar
  2. Info Birmanie

Germany

  1. CRPH, NUG Support Team Germany-Deutschland

India

  1. India For Myanmar

Ireland

  1. Ah Nah Podcast – Conversations with Myanmar
  2. Burma Action Ireland
  3. CRPH & NUG Supporters Ireland
  4. CRPH Funding Ireland

Korea

  1. Asian Dignity Initiative
  2. Global Myanmar Spring Revolution (Korea)
  3. Korean Civil Society in Support of Democracy in Myanmar (106 CSOs)

Myanmar/Thailand

  1. Action Committee for Democracy Development (Coalition of 14 grassroots networks)
  2. Association of Human Rights Defenders and Promoters
  3. Democratic Youth Council -ဒီမိုကရက်တစ် လူငယ်ကောင်စီ
  4. Future Light Center
  5. Future Thanlwin
  6. Generation Wave
  7. Human Rights Foundation of Monland
  8. Kachin State Civilian Movement_KSCM
  9. Karenni Human Rights Group
  10. Karenni National Women’s Organization
  11. Kyauktada Strike Committee
  12. Muslim Youth Network
  13. MyaYar Knowledge Tree
  14. Rangoon Scout Network – RSN
  15. Save and Care Organization for Ethnic Women at Border Areas
  16. School of Governance and Public Administration
  17. Sisters 2 Sisters
  18. Sitt Nyein Pann Foundation
  19. Southern Dragon Myanmar
  20. Ta’ang Women’s Organization
  21. Thailand for Burma
  22. Universities Kachin Literature and Culture Association – (Yangon JLH)
  23. Volunteers in Myanmar

New Zealand

  1. 8888 Generation (New Zealand)
  2. All Burma Democratic Face in New Zealand
  3. Auckland Kachin Community NZ
  4. Auckland Zomi Community
  5. Burmese Community Group (Manawatu,NZ)
  6. Burmese Rohingya Welfare Organisation New Zealand
  7. Chin Community of Auckland
  8. Citizen Of Burma Award – New Zealand
  9. Dunedin Myanmar Community New Zealand
  10. Federal Myanmar Benevolence Group (NZ)
  11. Karenni Society New Zealand
  12. Kayan International Network – New Zealand
  13. Myanmar Community Christchurch New Zealand
  14. Myanmar Engineers – New Zealand
  15. Myanmar Gonye (New Zealand)
  16. Myanmar Students’ Union in New Zealand
  17. Nelson Myanmar Community New Zealand
  18. New Zealand Doctors for NUG
  19. New Zealand Karen Association
  20. New Zealand Zo Community Inc
  21. Overseas Mon Association New Zealand
  22. Rvwang Community Association New Zealand
  23. Save Myanmar Fundraising Group (New Zealand)
  24. Shan Community (New Zealand)
  25. Wellington Chin Community (New Zealand)
  26. Wellington Karenni Community – New ZealandNorway
  27. Aung San Suu Kyi Park, Norway
  28. Chin Community in Norway
  29. CRPH Support Group, Norway
  30. Democratic Party for a New Society, Norway
  31. K’cho Ethnic Association
  32. Kachin Association Norway
  33. Karenni Association – Norway
  34. Matu Burma Foundation
  35. Mon Association – Norway
  36. Myanmar Baptist Churches in Norway
  37. Myanmar Catholic Community In Norway
  38. Myanmar Community in Norway
  39. Myanmar Hindu Community – Norway
  40. Myanmar Muslim Organization – Norway
  41. NLD Organization Committee (International) Norway
  42. Norway Falam Community
  43. Norway Matu Community
  44. Norway Rawang Community
  45. Rohingya Community in Norway
  46. Youth for Democratization of Myanmar (UDM)
  47. Zomi Christian Fellowship of Norway
  48. Zomi Community Norway

Sweden

  1. Karen Swedish Community (KSC)

Switzerland

  1. Association Suisse-Birmanie (Switzerland)
  2. International Association, Myanmar-Switzerland (IAMS)

USA

  1. Alliance for Democracy in Myanmar
  2. Alliance for Democracy in Myanmar
  3. Austin Myanmar Community
  4. Burmese American Democratic Alliance
  5. Burmese American Women Alliance
  6. Burmese Chin Community of Atlanta
  7. Chin Community San Francisco Bay Area
  8. Help Myanmar
  9. Kachin Culture and Literature Association
  10. LA2M Los Angeles Myanmar Movement
  11. Multi-Ethnic Community
  12. Myanmar Diaspora for Democracy
  13. Myanmar Students’ Union – Skyline College (ABFSU)
  14. Myanmar Student Union Skyline College (ABFSU)
  15. Save Myanmar San Francisco
  16. U.S. Campaign for Burma

The names of 6 organisations have been withheld for confidentiality.


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