Washington, D.C., August 5, 2008 - The Voice of America's (VOA) Burmese
Service is commemorating the 20th anniversary of pro-democracy
demonstrations in Burma with special programs this week that examine
the uprising and its impact on the country today.
Hundreds of thousands
of Burmese demonstrated to protest political oppression and economic
conditions in an uprising that began on August 8, 1988. The military
government cracked down on demonstrators, crushing the movement and
killing thousands of people
"This was a tragic event in Burma's
history," said VOA Director Danforth W. Austin. "We at VOA cannot let
the passage of time dim the memories of this movement in which more
than 3,000 Burmese citizens lost their lives."
VOA's Burmese Service
will look at the so-called 8888 (August 8, 1988) uprising from the
perspectives of both the protesters and Burmese government officials.
Special coverage includes:
• Interviews with former student leaders
who initiated and organized the protests;
• An exclusive interview
with a former military intelligence officer on his account of how the
military intelligence apparatus handled the crisis;
• An interview
with former a Burma Communist Party leader, now living in exile in
• Discussion with well-known economists about the general
economic crisis that led to the uprising; and
• Interviews with
refugee families who resettled in the United States and those who spent
years in prison for their role in the demonstrations.
will also compare and contrast the 8888 uprising with 1989 Tiananmen
Square pro-democracy movement in China.
VOA's Burmese Service
broadcasts six hours of radio daily. Broadcast times, frequencies,
video, streaming, and web-based news is available at
The Voice of America, which first went on the
air in 1942, is a multimedia international broadcasting service funded
by the U.S. government through the Broadcasting Board of Governors.
VOA (www.VOANews.com) broadcasts more than 1,250 hours of news,
information, educational, and cultural programming every week to an
estimated worldwide audience of more than 134 million people. Programs
are produced in 45 languages.
For more information, call the Office of Public Affairs at (202) 203-4959, or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.