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to the general becomes latest ploy of Burmese rebels
Andrew Buncombe, Belfast Telegraph
October 27, 2007
to pressure the Burmese regime are targeting the superstitions of
its senior generals by asking for people around the world to send
women's underwear to the junta.
In what may
be a first, campaigners based in Thailand have called for supporters
to "post, deliver or fling" the underwear to their nearest
Burmese embassy. They believe the senior members of the junta -
some known to be deeply superstitious - could be made to believe
they will lose their authority should they come into contact with
military regime is not only brutal but very superstitious. They
believe that contact with a woman's panties or sarong can rob them
of their power," says the website of the Lanna Action for Burma
group, based in Chiang Mai, in northern Thailand. The group says
that Burmese embassies have already received underwear from people
in Thailand, Australia, Singapore and the UK.
One of the group's
activists, Tomoko, said: "We want to raise awareness first,
and we want to target officials, letting them know we are against
them abusing their power. We are sending the generals panties as
a symbol of putting their power down."
the underwear campaign will have is unclear. Burma's senior general,
Than Shwe, is known to be very superstitious. When the regime decided
to move its capital from Rangoon to a new location deep in the jungle
at Naypidaw, the general sought the advice of a numerologist who
told him that the most auspicious time for the move would be 6.37
in the morning. As a result, the first convoy of government trucks
left Rangoon at precisely that time.
News of the
latest effort by activists to pressure the regime came as hundreds
of Burmese riot police returned to the streets of Rangoon yesterday.
The Buddhist Lent season was ending, allowing monks to move about
again, and authorities feared they might spark off protests.
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