Urge Burma's junta to improve human rights situation

Mr. Li Ka Shing

Chairperson

Hutchison Whampoa Limited
22/F Hutchison House
10 Harcourt Road
Hong Kong

9 January 2009

Dear Mr. Li Ka Shing,

The Hong Kong Coalition for a Free Burma appreciates that Hutchison Port Holdings upholds the principle of corporate social responsibility, and has shown a commitment to communities where your company has business affairs. We sincerely hope that the same principle is being applied to Burma, as your company is operating the Myanmar International Terminals Thilawa in Yangon.

Since your company operates a business in Burma, the Coalition believes that your company must comprehend the human rights situation in the country. Based on information from the Special Rapporteur on Myanmar, Mr. Tomas Ojea Quintana, some 2000 prisoners of conscience are currently held in Burma, and persecution of ethnic minorities leads to extensive internal displacement and outflow of refugees. Responding to on-going and worsening human rights violations in Burma, we support the call of the government in exile, the National Coalition Government Union of Burma, to impose economic sanction as a  "pressure mechanism to persuade the regime to recognize the crisis in the country and the need for a peaceful resolution of the crisis".  As such, we are concerned about the role of Hong Kong companies which are investing in Burma, including Hutchison. These investments do not add to the development of the country but rather help prop up Burma's military government, a government which clearly revealed its contempt for its own people in the way it responded to Cyclone Nargis last May and initially prevented the international community from providing needed assistance.

In the light of corporate social responsibility and in solidarity with the people of Burma to end the dictatorship, the Coalition requests Hutchison Port Holdings either to:

(1) step up and use your influence in Burma to urge the military government to improve the human rights situation and release all political prisoners in Burma; or

(2) step out and withdraw business from Burma.

Looking forward to hearing from you as soon as possible.

Thank you!

Yours sincerely,The Hong Kong Coalition for a Free Burmac/o PO Box 297 Fotan Post Office New Territories, Hong Kong SAR

Mr. Li Ka Shing

Chairperson

Hutchison Whampoa Limited
22/F Hutchison House
10 Harcourt Road
Hong Kong

9 January 2009

Dear Mr. Li Ka Shing,

The Hong Kong Coalition for a Free Burma appreciates that Hutchison Port Holdings upholds the principle of corporate social responsibility, and has shown a commitment to communities where your company has business affairs. We sincerely hope that the same principle is being applied to Burma, as your company is operating the Myanmar International Terminals Thilawa in Yangon.

Since your company operates a business in Burma, the Coalition believes that your company must comprehend the human rights situation in the country. Based on information from the Special Rapporteur on Myanmar, Mr. Tomas Ojea Quintana, some 2000 prisoners of conscience are currently held in Burma, and persecution of ethnic minorities leads to extensive internal displacement and outflow of refugees. Responding to on-going and worsening human rights violations in Burma, we support the call of the government in exile, the National Coalition Government Union of Burma, to impose economic sanction as a  "pressure mechanism to persuade the regime to recognize the crisis in the country and the need for a peaceful resolution of the crisis".  As such, we are concerned about the role of Hong Kong companies which are investing in Burma, including Hutchison. These investments do not add to the development of the country but rather help prop up Burma's military government, a government which clearly revealed its contempt for its own people in the way it responded to Cyclone Nargis last May and initially prevented the international community from providing needed assistance.

In the light of corporate social responsibility and in solidarity with the people of Burma to end the dictatorship, the Coalition requests Hutchison Port Holdings either to:

(1) step up and use your influence in Burma to urge the military government to improve the human rights situation and release all political prisoners in Burma; or

(2) step out and withdraw business from Burma.

Looking forward to hearing from you as soon as possible.

Thank you!

Yours sincerely,The Hong Kong Coalition for a Free Burmac/o PO Box 297 Fotan Post Office New Territories, Hong Kong SAR
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