UNITED NATIONS, March 5 _.. small conference room the indictment of Myanmar’s General Than Shwe was urged with almost no coverage.

inner city press
Alongside a small plate of cookies there were flyers describing “hundreds of cases of rape, forced pregnancy and murder” and over 450,000 “Burmese deemed to be internally displaced in eastern Burma.” There were no reporters, save one. This is a great day for international justice, one of the speakers said. There is no obstacle to indicting Than Shwe than our own thinking, she added, saying that China has been meeting in secret with the National League for Democracy, hedging its bets about Than Shwe.

Earlier on Wednesday, Inner City Press asked Human Rights Watch’s Richard Dicker if HRW is urging the Security Council to refer to the International Criminal Court Than Shwe, Kim Jong-Il in North Korea and even, as has been requested, some in Sri Lanka. He replied that Sri Lanka, like Myanmar, is not a member of the ICC. Neither is Sudan; HRW among others pushed to get the Council to make the referral.

In the conference room with cookies, Naw Htoo Paw and Khin Sann Htwe of the Thailand-based Women’s League of Burma spoke passionately about the lack of freedom in their country, and their refusal to accept the 2008 constitution, which was pushed through just after Cyclone Nargis in a campaign in which it was illegal to speak against the constitution. Myanmar presentation, "good luck" says UN's Gambari
Myanmar presentation, “good luck” says UN’s Gambari
The speakers called the result one of “gender apartheid,” noting that 25% of the seats have to go to those with military backgrounds, and that the two military academies do not accept women. It was unclear if they would like Than Shwe’s schools to open themselves to women. continue

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