The crowd included, amongst others, many Burmese pro-democracy activists, who were in good voice, supporters from Amnesty International and Burma Campaign UK, and plenty of media and paparazzi. The rally was addressed by a number of speakers, including a representative of the repressed Karen people of the Burma-Thai border region, speakers from Amnesty and Burma Campaign, and even a Tory MP (who was heckled). All expressed solidarity with the peaceful demonstrators in Burma and called for restraint and an end to repression by the military junta. No one from the embassy dared venture out to address the crowd.
After an hour or so, around a hundred demonstrators marched to the Chinese embassy in Portland Place, via Berkeley Square and Regent Street, chanting "Free, free, Burma, Burma!", with many toots and gestures of support from passing motorists and onlookers.
There followed an hour and a half or so of chanting outside the Chinese embassy, the crowd calling out relentlessly: "China, China - don't refuse people power!", "democracy, democracy - now, now!", "let the UN do its job", "stop the killing in Burma", "stop selling weapons to Burma", "free Aung San Su Kyi - now, now", "China gains, Burma suffers", "stop supporting the Burmese / military regime" - all interspersed with Burmese national songs. Again, no spokesperson from the embassy was forthcoming.
The demonstrators will be back at the Burmese embassy at the same time (12 - 1 pm) tomorrow, and every day until democracy is restored in their home country. Please, please come and join them in solidarity - they so desperately need the support of the people of the West.
Embassy of the Union of Myanmar (Burma)
19 A CHARLES STREET (near Berkeley Square)
LONDON W1J 5DX
Nearest tube: Green Park
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