Friday, April 13th, 2012
David Cameron has said economic sanctions against Burma should be suspended in recognition of the changes taking place in the country.
The prime minister spoke after a meeting with pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi in Rangoon.
Ms Suu Kyi welcomed his call and said the suspension of sanctions would “strengthen the hand of the reformers”. (more…)
Loije, Burma — A large section of the heavily traveled Loije to Bhamo (Manmaw) road which connects southern Kachin state to China was effectively closed on Thursday by the Kachin Independence Organization (KIO), Burma’s second largest armed resistance group. (more…)
Mai Ja Yang, Burma — The staff from Wunpawng Ninghtoi (WPN) a local Kachin aid group that provides relief and medical supplies for refugees living in the Mai Ja Yang area is very pleased by the results of a recent UN aid convoy to eastern Kachin state. (more…)
Rangoon – No U Turn’s Ye Ngwe Soe: “I do what I want even when there are restrictions”
In a dark basement in the Burmese capital Rangoon, Ye Ngwe Soe lets out a tortured howl.
Not everyone is happy with impending moves by western powers to ease sanctions against the government of Myanmar, also known as Burma.
An official representative of the country’s Rohingya minority – an ethnic Muslim group that has long suffered in Buddhist-dominated Burma and who have long complained of persecution and abuse by its repressive military – has asked the United States to base a relaxation of sanctions on perceived improvements on human rights issues. (more…)
Recent protests by thousands of migrant workers in Songkla and Kanchanaburi has exposed further evidence of how Thai exporters to giant American, European and Australian food chains have gone unaudited. (more…)
With the imminent lifting of major sanctions on Burma, its economy is poised for rapid growth, the Asian Development Bank said Wednesday.
However, the challenges remain “tremendous” in one of the poorest economies in the world, Craig Steffensen, the bank’s director for Myanmar and Thailand, told The Associated Press on Thursday. “We’re trying to unwind a knotted ball of yarn if you will, and it’s going to take a long time to untangle.” (more…)
The rush to lift international trade sanctions on Burma in the wake of pro-democracy icon’s Aung San Suu Kyi’s stunning by-election victory has surprised even the most resolute reformist. It took the West’s biggest advocate of the crippling economic measures, the United States, until April 4 to announce their easing—just two days after the official results were announced.
Washington: Group of Eight foreign ministers raised the prospect Thursday of easing international sanctions on Myanmar after a series of reformist moves and landmark elections in the long-closed nation.
In announcing their decision, the ministers from the world powers said they welcomed “significant steps the government of Burma/Myanmar has taken toward democratic reform and national reconciliation.”
Unless the EU sets benchmarks for real and irreversible change, the Burmese government will assume it’s business as usual
For many decades, Burma seemed to be stuck in an endless cycle of suffering. Every 10 years or so there would be an uprising, which would then be brutally crushed. My own father was involved in those uprisings, and was jailed for his role in them. It seems like this cycle has been broken at last. My father and hundreds of other political prisoners have been released. Byelections have seen Aung San Suu Kyi win a seat in parliament at last. (more…)
The successful completion of the by-elections of April 1 provides grounds for renewed hope for future developments in Myanmar. In spite of dire predictions of manipulation, the results indicate that the government of President Thein Sein has essentially fulfilled its promise of a fair set of by-elections – ones that were swept by the opposition National League for Democracy (NLD), which won 43 of 45 seats. (more…)
Burma Campaign UK today welcomed an announcement by British Prime Minister David Cameron that Britain will not support EU sanctions against Burma being lifted. He has proposed sanctions be suspended instead. Germany and other EU members had been pushing for all sanctions except the arms embargo to be lifted immediately. (more…)
Manila, Philippines — An ecstatic President Aquino, expressing optimism at the new path that Burma (now Myanmar) had taken, perhaps speaks for many of his Asean colleagues when he remarked that this country which had been a dictatorship for many years, deserves to be rewarded. In addition to reforms which are now being implemented, the victory of prodemocracy icon, Aung San Suu Kyi during the recent elections had given leaders of ASEAN and the champions of democracy in the world a reason to rejoice.
As business opportunities explode after the relaxing of domestic and international restrictions, many doubt whether Burma’s poor will benefit