September 2004


A Karen National Union, or KNU, Fourth Brigade camp at Nam Ka Prao village in Southern Burma, Tenasserim Division was attacked by the Burma Army on Tuesday, despite a ceasefire agreement being in place, according to KNU general-secretary Mahn Sha.
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Burma’s main opposition party, the National League for Democracy, or NLD, suspended three senior members for one year yesterday for organizing a march to a UN office in Rangoon, the party’s spokesman said on Thursday.
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Bangkok: Thai poachers capture dozens of endangered wild baby elephants in Laos and Myanmar each year to feed growing demand from circuses, zoos and traveling shows, experts warned Thursday.
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Bangkok: Thai Foreign Minister Surakiart Sathirathai faces a long, uphill race for the top job at the United Nations despite the backing of his Southeast Asian neighbours, analysts and diplomats said on Thursday. The wealthy Harvard-educated lawyer was endorsed by his regional counterparts on Wednesday as Southeast Asia’s choice to succeed U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan when his second five-year terms ends in 2006.
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Foreign policy has served Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra’s own ambitions for regional leadership and for his business empire, academics at a Chulalongkorn University seminar said yesterday.
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September 29: United Nations: Myanmar on Wednesday defended its human rights record in the face of international pressure to release pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi, but an exiled opposition member warned that abuses “continue unabated.”
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September 29: United Nations: UN Secretary General Kofi Annan met with representatives of a dozen nations here on Wednesday to seek ways of pressing Myanmar’s military regime, in power for more than four decades, to move toward democracy.
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The Brussels-based International Confederation of Free Trade Unions, or ICFTU, on Wednesday sent a letter to Indonesian President Megawati Sukarnoputri urging the Indonesian government not to deport six Burmese seafarers who were detained last month.
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September 29: The following statement was issued today by the Spokesman for the Secretary-General Kofi Annan:
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Pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi’s party on Wednesday welcomed a new UN report that criticized the country’s junta for jailing hundreds of political dissidents.
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Myanmar has been implementing another new four-year short-term special education promotion plan since the current 2004-05 academic year in a bid to keep pace with the education standard of the Southeast Asian countries, latest official reports said.
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There are prospects of the two factions of the Kachin Independence Organisation (KIO) to be reunited, according to a Christian pastor who attended negotiations held on September 9.
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The Burma Army has been on the loose for the past week raiding villages, turning things upside down and making life miserable in general for all the residents in the area he is operating, claims a brigade commander from the Shan State Army ‘South’:
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Local officials are checking all transported fowls within the province and across the Thai-Myanmar border.
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Brussels (ICFTU Online): In a letter to Indonesian President Megawati Soekarnoputri, the ICFTU has called upon the Indonesian government to protect the rights of six seafarers of Burmese origin, currently being held by Indonesian immigration authorities on the island of Tual. The case has also been raised by the ICFTU with United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees Ruud Lubbers.
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Bangkok: A top U.N. rights envoy condemned on Wednesday the arrest and jailing of opposition activists in military-ruled Myanmar and said he had received credible reports of rights violations in border areas.
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United Nations: Myanmar’s military junta continues to hold more than 1,300 political detainees and has shown no indication it will release pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi from house arrest, a U.N. official said.
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September 28: The starvation and disease stalking the refugee camps near the Darfur region of Sudan are a reminder that for many refugees, conditions where they land are not much better than the conditions they flee. The world has 12 million refugees, and 7.4 million of them have been living in camps or settlements for more than 10 years. Many are prohibited from traveling or working, confined to crowded, squalid tents, at the mercy of marauding gangs, and utterly dependent on handouts of food insufficient to ward off hunger and on health care that does not prevent cholera and dysentery. Some people have lived in such camps for generations.
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September 27: Yangon: Myanmar will not send its top leaders to an Asia-Europe summit in Vietnam next month in a move likely to avert a diplomatic crisis over the military regime.
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Thailand’s Education Minister, Mr. Adisai Bodharamik, has led a team of 160 university officials to a three-day-exhibition-cum-seminar in Myanmar’s capital city of Rangoon to promote Thai college education to the neighbouring country.
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