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Demonstrators Across Asia Launch Marches Protesting Burma Crackdown


A planned global day of demonstrations against Burma's crackdown on pro-democracy activists got underway today - Saturday in several Asian cities.

In Australia, about 200 demonstrators marched in Sydney, while another 200 gathered to protest in Melbourne. About 100 people took to the streets in Bangkok.

The rights group Amnesty International has said protests will be held in at least a dozen countries, including Britain, Belgium, Mongolia, Sweden and the United States.

In a statement Friday, the rights group condemned the use of violence against peaceful protesters, and called on the UN Security Council to immediately impose a comprehensive and mandatory arms embargo on the country.

Amnesty International said today's demonstrations would call for an end to attacks on protesters in Burma and the immediate release of those detained for participation in peaceful assemblies (unless they are charged with a recognizably criminal
offense). The statement also called for the release of all prisoners of conscience.

Information for this report is provided by AP and Reuters.

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