Friday, August 3rd, 2007


The National League for Democracy yesterday rejected claims by the Alternative 88 Generation Students group that US economic sanctions were hurting the Burmese people.
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The Burmese police rounded up around 70 Chins from the Five Star sea port in Taketa Township in Yangon on July 17. They were waiting to board a ship leaving Kawt Taung town, Taninsary division, the southern Burma’s border with Thailand.
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The Burma Army harbours no plans to attack Wa. The area commander of Pongpakhem sub-township, Mongton Township, opposite Chiangmai, denied yesterday that the army plans to forcibly dislodge Wa units stationed along the Thai-Burma border, according to a veteran Thai security source. (more…)

Flooding in Amarapura and Thabeikkyin townships in Mandalay Division has forced residents from their homes near the swollen Irrawaddy River.
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Forcible recruitment of youths in the Burma Army late last month, has been reported from Hopin Township, 60 miles southwest of Myitkyina, capital of Kachin State in northern Burma.
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The lawyers for six men being tried at a special court in Insein prison for attending May Day celebrations at the American Centre in Rangoon yesterday appealed to the military to allow a public hearing.
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Mae Sot, Thailand – On a recent morning, two trucks packed with about 120 Burmese drove up to a pier on the Thai side of the Moe River, which separates north-western Thailand from Burma. One, with a black exterior and with grills on the side, is often used to transport prisoners. The other, a Toyota truck, had sturdy bars and looked like a cage on wheels.
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Decades of neglect, civil war, and corruption have rendered Burma’s health system incapable of responding to infectious diseases and other health risks. And, as the country closes its doors to more and more aid agencies, the situation only looks set to worsen. Rhona MacDonald reports. (more…)

The UN Secretary-General’s Special Representative o­n Burma Ibrahim Gambari will visit Southeast Asian countries to consult with regional governments on the issue of the restoration of democracy and the protection of human rights in military-ruled Burma. (more…)

Amid all the talk of unity and harmony at the ASEAN Regional Forum, Asia’s largest security grouping, conflict still brewed behind closed doors and even boiled over publicly, with normally diplomatic Japan bristling over a confrontation with North Korea.
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The rare meeting in June between a senior US official and a group of Burmese ministers in Beijing signaled a change in US-Burma policy. The meeting was marked by a frank and free exchange of opinions from both sides, according to US State Department spokesperson Tom Casey, who said it had come at the request of the military junta. Burmese ministers were apparently delighted to meet Eric John, deputy assistant secretary of state for East Asian and Pacific Affairs. (more…)

Everyday workers from Burma, Laos and Cambodia immigrate to Thailand looking for better opportunities. Their neighbor, Thailand, offers a more stable economic and political environment than their native lands. (more…)