Tuesday, August 28th, 2007


Dozens of pro-democracy supporters were detained Tuesday after a top labour activist tried to launch a new protest in Yangon against a sharp rise in fuel prices, witnesses said.
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Rare dissent in military-ruled Myanmar against soaring fuel prices spread to the oil-producing northwest on Tuesday, where a 200-strong crowd of mostly Buddhist monks protested in Sittwe, a local source said.
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Well-known activist and National League for Democracy member Su Su Nway was hospitalised this afternoon after collapsing during a protest in Rangoon’s Hledan township.
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Rather than stir up memories of their bloody 1988 crackdown by putting troops on the streets, Myanmar’s junta is relying on gangs of paid thugs and criminals armed with brooms and spades to crush a rare outbreak of dissent.
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Taungup: ILO Liaison Officer Mr. Stephen Marshal from Rangoon arrived in southern Arakan State yesterday to investigate complaints of forced labour abuses by government officials, said a human rights activist from Taungup.
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Goods from Burma bound for India are piling up on the Indo- Burma border after Indian authorities closed the Indo-Burma trade road (2) in August this year. Businessmen are suffering heavy losses as a result. (more…)

Tourist arrivals in Myanmar through Yangon entry checkpoint alone hit over 47,000 in the first four months (April-July) of the fiscal year 2007-08, up 20 percent from 2006-07 correspondingly, the local Weekly Eleven News reported Tuesday.
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International Organization for Migration (IOM) in Burma has started work on prevention of malaria among the poor and the workers who live in the jungles and plantations. They are providing free malaria diagnosis, treatment and mosquito nets in areas where malaria infection levels are high.
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The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) voiced concern over unrest in Myanmar on Tuesday, its first comments after soaring fuel prices prompted rare public protests in the military-ruled nation.
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Thailand is closely monitoring the political situation in Burma, where public discontent over fuel price increases has led to demonstrations and the arrest of a number of protesters in Rangoon.
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While several more protesters were arrested by Burma’s ruling junta yesterday, adding to the more than 100 already held and allegedly tortured since last week, and new alarms have been raised about heightened levels of unrest and human rights abuses in the country, both the U.N. Security Council and Secretary-General Ban have largely stayed on the sidelines, issuing no more than mild statements.
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Prominent British rights group, Burma Campaign UK has criticized British policies toward Burma as what they perceive as a lack of initiative at a time when protests, demonstrations and arrests are taking place throughout the country.
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The sudden fuel price increases that triggered street protests and a political crackdown in Burma in recent days highlighted not only the country’s economic woes and the incompetence of the ruling generals but also the country’s political problems.
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Regarding the article “Hundreds march in Myanmar over prices” (Aug. 23): Human rights activists and citizens marched through the streets of Rangoon in opposition to a steep rise of fuel prices. Unfortunately, policymakers around the world have not shown the same fortitude as these protesters. The UN Security Council has remained shamefully paralyzed on Burma for the past 8 months since China vetoed a multilateral resolution that would have condemned the country’s military regime. (more…)

Burmese Exiles in London protested today outside the Foreign and Commonwealth Office to call upon the UK government to do more to resolve the current crisis in Burma. In support of the protest, Christian Solidarity Worldwide (CSW) has released a statement urging the UK Government to bring the crisis in Burma to the UN Security Council. Representatives from CSW and Burma Campaign UK also joined the protest today.
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Stephen Crabb MP, Chairman of the Conservative Party Human Rights Commission, today condemned the Burmese junta’s crackdown on protestors and urged the British Government to call for an emergency meeting of the UN Security Council to address the crisis in Burma.
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Democratic Voice of Burma (DVB) radio will begin test transmissions via satellite on Monday [27 August].

Test broadcasts of the regular DVB programme will take place between 1400-1630 and 1730-2100 Burmese time [0730-1000 gmt and 1100-1330 gmt].

The tests will use [DVB's] regular frequency of 4,000 MHz, symbol rate 28125 [FEC 3/4], audio PID 2314, on AsiaSat 2 [at 100.5 degrees east: Lyngsat - www.lyngsat.com - lists this outlet as being used by the UK-based World Radio Network, WRN, for its multilingual Asia-Pacific service].

News from Burma will be broadcast, as well as discussions about current affairs, question-and-answer sessions, interviews, songs and repeats of regular DVB programmes.

The programme can also be heard via www.dvb.no.

Source: Democratic Voice of Burma website, Oslo, in Burmese 0000 gmt 27 Aug 07