August 2004


Members of Burma’s main opposition party, the National League for Democracy, or NLD, are calling for an overhaul to the party’s decision-making bodies, including its nine-member Central Executive Committee, or CEC, said senior party members.
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Changes in passport regulations which took effect in early August have resulted in a sharp increase in applications for tax clearance forms for those planning to travel abroad.
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About 200 Burmese workers from Asia Apparel Knitting Co Ltd in the Thai border town of Mae Sot are recovering from food poisoning at the local Mae Tao clinic, officials said on Tuesday.
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August 30: According to the statement issued today, it demanded the SPDC government initiate a dialogue toward a political settlement.  The NMSP has continually insisted upon a political dialogue to solve the political crisis and a purpose of attending the government sponsored National Convention was the goal for forming a Federal Union in Burma.  The NMSP will struggle by both means; solving the political crisis on the dialogue table and by armed struggle.
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All eyes will be on the Burmese sector of the Golden Triangle come next year when an ethnic army controlling a sizeable portion of the region is due to turn the opium-rich area into a drug-free zone.
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Myanmar plans to more than triple the number of phones in the country within two years, a private journal reported Tuesday. The state-run Myanma Post and Telecom envisages increasing the telephone density to three connections for every 100 people before the fiscal 2005-2006, said the Myanmar News Gazette. The current density is .78 phones for 100 people.
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A new document from the Asian Development Bank (ADB): “Key Indicators 2004: Poverty in Asia: Measurement, Estimates, and Prospects”
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A network of exiled media organisations from Myanmar has been slowly expanding its reach with new members joining the ranks of what is called the Burma News International (BNI) during a meeting at Chiang Mai in Thailand. BNI plays a key role in tracking developments within Myanmar and
disseminating information among Myanmarese living across the world through e-mails and publications.
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The Ambon branch of the Indonesian Mariners Union (KPI) has called on the London-based International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF) to step in and help Myanmarese sailors who have been stranded in Southeast Maluku regency for several years.
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A global coalition of groups campaigning for democracy in military-ruled Myanmar urged the European Union to remain firm in opposing Myanmar’s participation at October’s Asia-Europe summit talks.
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EU foreign ministers will seek this week to break a deadlock over Myanmar which is threatening to scupper an Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) scheduled for Vietnam in October, diplomats said Tuesday.
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August 30: Today marks the fifteen-month anniversary of the “Depayin” massacre in Burma, in which scores of National League for Democracy (NLD) members were brutally killed by the regime’s militias, hundreds of NLD members
including Daw Aung San Suu Kyi and Vice Chairman U Tin Oo were placed in detention, and NLD offices were forced to shut down.
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More than 5,000 people attended the ethnic Karen’s annual wrist tying ceremony at a Burmese temple in the Thai border town of Mae Sot on Monday, said festival onlookers.
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August 27: A Thai labour court is offering hope to over a million migrant workers that justice is possible in this South-east Asian country – even if the struggle to secure a victory could last nearly two years.
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Myanmar [Burma] needs to be prepared to minimize any negative pricing effects involving pharmaceuticals when it implements international agreements on trade related intellectual property rights (TRIPS), a workshop in Yangon [Rangoon] has been told.
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Myanmar is trying to attract more foreign shipping lines to fly its national flag to egg on its maritime industry, sources in the Marine Administration Department said yesterday.
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Indonesia today rejected any compromise solution to the row between Southeast Asian countries and Europe over Burma that would result in Rangoon regime leaders failing to attend an upcoming summit.
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Vietnam has dispatched a former premier to Yangon to discuss a European-Asian summit Hanoi is hosting in October that has drawn fire from some European nations over the participation of Myanmar’s authoritarian regime.
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The development project has been under a cooperation between Thailand, Myanmar and the United Nation’s World Food Programme, he said, adding that the cooperation would be extended to Cambodia in a near future.
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Some of the world’s top shipping companies appear in the Burma Campaign’s annual “dirty list” that seeks to shame companies its regards as helping the country’s military regime.
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