April 2011

Survivors of Cyclone Giri, which left more than a quarter of a million people homeless when it struck western Burma’s Arakan State coast last October, say that many are still struggling with problems related to shelter, livelihood and employment six months after the disaster. (more…)

New Delhi – The ad hoc Group of Democratic Party Friends (GDPF), an alliance of 10 Burmese political parties and the All Mon Region Democratic Party, has asked the European Union to renew Burma’s Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) status. (more…)

Muse, Myanmar – A Myanmar-China border trade fair was launched in Myanmar’s Muse 105th Mile Border Trade Zone Friday, aimed at enchanting the bilateral trade between the two countries. (more…)

Bangkok – Thailand’s PTT Exploration and Production : (more…)

WITH great power comes great responsibility goes the saying and several international energy companies are showing that with great profits come great responsibilities by running socioeconomic programs to directly benefit the communities where they work. (more…)

David Lee Carden, a former attorney who has been named the first US ambassador to the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean), will attend the Asean Summit in Indonesia next week, where he will have the opportunity to push Burma to change and discuss with Asean members whether Burma chair the organization in 2014, claim Burma activists. (more…)

Up to 1000 Burmese migrants have reportedly burnt vehicles and assaulted a security guard and policeman after a fight broke out on Wednesday between workers and security at a factory in central Thailand. (more…)

Apparently even dictators celebrate Earth Day. On Tuesday, the authorities in military-ruled Burma passed a law banning the production, storage, and sale of polythene bags in the country’s main city Rangoon, effective April 22. The decree was announced by the state-run newspaper and heralded as a move to combat non-degradable waste in the impoverished former capital. (more…)

In a program broadcast on April 22, Aung San Suu Kyi calls for talks between Burma’s government and the democratic opposition, discusses the importance of preserving the languages and literature of Burma’s ethnic groups, and expresses concern for Burmese refugees living in camps. (more…)

Hong Kong – The Asian Legal Resource Centre has strongly endorsed the contents of a letter by the National League for Democracy to Burma’s president calling for action on the rule of law. (more…)

Chiang Mai – The festering issue of a general amnesty for political prisoners was addressed again this week, this time by five ethnic political parties who issued a joint statement urging the government to release all political prisoners for the sake of national reconciliation. (more…)

Yangon – Myanmar and China have agreed to build a rail link connecting Southwest China with the Indian Ocean, officials and local media said on Thursday. (more…)

The New Mon State Party (NMSP), an ethnic armed group in southern Burma, has repeatedly asked the new Burmese government to stop fighting in Shan State, with the threat that a civil war will spread throughout Burma. (more…)

Mae Sot — Thai police is likely to begin raiding buildings and apartments in the border town of Mae Sot that Burmese opposition groups rent for offices and residences, according to sources close to Burmese police. (more…)

There has been an apparent decrease in the number of Manipur rebels sheltering in western Burma, according to a Chin news group which claims it may be a result of increased military cooperation between India and Burma. (more…)

Dhaka: Burma and Bangladesh are expected to collaborate in the military sector in the near future after the two countries signaled their intent during Burmese air chief Lieutenant General Myat Hein’s six-day visit to Bangladesh. (more…)

Fishery owners in the Thai border town of Ranong are protesting arrests of Burmese migrant workers whom police allege have no legal permits to work in Thailand. (more…)

Washington — Asserting that the Burmese government remains one of the world‘s worst human rights violators and that it severely restricts religious practice, an independent, bipartisan US federal government commission on Thursday urged US President Barack Obama to retain targeted sanctions against the Burmese military junta until it takes steps to meet benchmarks established in UN resolutions and US law. (more…)

Following recent heavy fighting in northern Shan State, all the planned Salween dam sites in Burma now lie directly in active conflict zones. The Salween Watch Coalition is therefore demanding an immediate halt to all plans to build dams on the Salween River in Burma. This applies directly to the Governments and Corporations of China and Thailand as well as the new Government of Burma On March 13, 2011, Burma’s military regime broke its 22-year-old ceasefire with the Shan State Army- North, and mobilized over 3,500 troops to launch a fierce attack in central Shan State, shelling civilian targets, committing gang-rape, and displacing thousands of civilians. The fighting has now spread across northern Shan State, to areas adjoining the two planned upper Salween dam sites. (more…)

Yangon, Myanmar – Myanmar’s new president has appointed a nine-member advisory board that includes an economist who is close to opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi. (more…)

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