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The Report

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The “Threat to the Peace Report” was published in September 2005 by the global law firm DLA Piper Rudnick Gray Cary to document the threat that the SPDC, Burma’s military junta, poses both to its own people and to regional peace and security.
The report was commissioned by Vacláv Havel, Former President of the Czech Republic, and Desmond M. Tutu, Archbishop Emeritus of Cape Town and Nobel Peace Prize Laureate.
“Threat to the Peace” analyzes the criteria for bringing the situation of a particular country to the UN Security Council, summarizes the relevant problems and challenges in Burma, and places these issues in the context of past Security Council interventions.
The report concludes that the UN Security Council should adopt a resolution on the situation in Burma in accordance with its authority under Chapter VII of the UN Charter (Article 41) and past Security Council precedents.
The resolution should:
  • Outline the major reasons for the Security Council intervention, focusing on the threat to the peace caused by the major issues described in this report;
  • Require the SPDC to work with the Secretary-General’s office in implementing a plan for national reconciliation and a restoration of a democratically-elected government;
  • Request the Secretary-General to remain vigorously engaged with the dispute resolution process and require that he report back to the Security Council on a regular basis;
  • Urge the SPDC to ensure the immediate, safe, and unhindered access to all parts of the country for the United Nations and international humanitarian organizations to provide humanitarian assistance to the most vulnerable groups of the population, including internally displaced persons;
  • Call for the immediate and unconditional release of Daw Aung San Suu Kyi and all prisoners of conscience in Burma.
Table of Contents
Executive Summary
I. Background on the Situation in Burma
A. Political History
1. Early History
2. Independence
3. Military Coup
4. 8/8/88
5. Democratic Election
6. Recent History
7. Current Situation
B. Economic Development
1. Economic Mismanagement by the Burmese Government
2. Economic and Social Indicators
3. The Military’s Pervasive Role in the Economy
4. Health and Education
5. Lack of Infrastructure
6. Foreign Investment and Trade
C. Demographics of Population
1. Discrimination and Abuse against Ethnic Minority Groups
2. Internally Displaced Persons and Refugees
3. Ethnic Opposition Nationalities
4. Ceasefire Agreements
5. Renewed Ethnic Insurgency
II. Burma’s Threat to Peace and Security in the Region and the Global Response
A. Transnational Effects of the Conflict in Burma
1. Destruction of Villages
a. Four Cuts Strategy and Modern Development Projects
b. Human Rights Abuses Related to Forced Relocations
c. Internal Displacement
d. External Displacement
2. Forced Labor
3. Rape
4. Drugs
6. Child Soldiers
B. International Promotion of National Reconciliation in Burma
1. United Nations
3. European Union
4. United States of America
5. International Support for UN Security Council Action
6. Response of the Government of Burma
III. Burma and the UN Security Council
A. Lessons from Past UN Security Council Interventions
1. Sierra Leone
2. Afghanistan
3. Haiti
4. Republic of Yemen
5. Rwanda
6. Liberia
7. Cambodia
B. Application of UN Security Council Criteria to Situation in Burma
1. Overthrow of a Democratically-Elected Government
2. Conflict Between the Regime and Ethnic Groups
3. Widespread Internal Humanitarian / Human Rights Violations
4. Substantial Outflow of Refugees
5. Other Cross Border Problems
C. Time for UN Security Council Action
Appendix: Background, Duties, and Operations of UN Security Council