According to the BBC, a UN group that includes human rights experts condemns the recent “trials” by Burma’s courts. Few objective observers would deny that the kleptocratic government of Burma is among the worst and most corrupt in the world, and this week the junta is working to being those last few doubters over.

Burma’s courts have been sentencing dissidents every day during the past week.

The courts, often operating from behind prison walls, have been so secretive that it is difficult to be sure how many people have been convicted.

The total is now certainly more than 80 – 23 of whom received sentences of 65 years in jail.

There is no obvious logic behind the harshness of the punishments.

The longest sentences were meted out for illegally using electronic media – an indication perhaps of the military’s fear of the internet.

A journalist who covered cyclone victims got a 2-year sentence.

In other news, China is building an oil pipeline and a gas pipeline through Burma. And China continues to trumpet that it will never budge in any way on Tibet:

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang says the Chinese government’s position on Tibet is “resolute.”

Qin says any attempt to separate Tibet from Chinese territory will be “doomed.” He also emphasized that what he describes as the “so-called Tibet government in exile” is not recognized by any other government.

The Chinese spokesman made comments directed at India, the country where many Tibetan exiles live and where Tibetan exiles are currently holding a crucial meeting.

The spokesman says China hopes and believes India will live up to its commitment to forbid any separatist activities on its territory.

Thank you for subscribing to Tricycle! As a nonprofit, to keep Buddhist teachings and practices widely available.

This article is only for Subscribers!

Subscribe now to read this article and get immediate access to everything else.

Subscribe Now

Already a subscriber? .