Monday, February 4th, 2013

Recently, Myanmar’s government military has continually engaged in crossfire with the Kachin Independence Army. This naturally affected China’s border region as the artillery shells landed in China. Afterwards, Jane’s Defense Weekly released a report saying that China provided weapons to the opposition (KIA). And VOA issued a follow-up report. Is this type of report true? Generally speaking, from common sense, the story is completely groundless. (more…)

Ethnic rebels and Myanmar’s military agreed Monday to reduce armed tensions after weeks of intense fighting, capping an effort by neighboring China to restore stability along its southern border and protect the investments it has made in the Southeast Asian country. (more…)

Thirty-one ethnic women’s groups in Burma have condemned the government army for committing sexual abuses against women in war-torn Kachin State, in contravention of UN conventions to which Burma is a signatory. (more…)

The Lower House of Parliament’s Judicial Committee Chairman Thura Aung Ko said that his office has been unable to keep up with the deluge of letters of complaint sent to it by members of the public. (more…)

Hundreds of squatters, some armed with bamboo poles, have faced off against police and Yangon City Development Committee officials over the demolition of their homes. (more…)

National League for Democracy members in Mandalay cancelled a planned protest against official from their party after police did not approve their original application. (more…)

The Lower House has rejected a proposal to amend draft legislation on contempt of court so that those found guilty of the offence would not face prison sentences. The bill was submitted on January 28 by MP Thein Nyunt, who represents Thingangyun Township, and voted down. (more…)

Burma added a touch of poetry to its political reforms at the weekend with the staging of its first international literary festival, made possible after its oppressive censorship regime was lifted last year.

The Myanmar Gem Entrepreneurs Association (MGEA) said that its chairman Tay Za, a well-known business crony of Burma’s military, wants to resign from his position. The organization claims that it wants him to stay on, despite the fact that he is on a US sanctions list. (more…)

A five-year development plan for Yangon will cost US$2.245 billion to implement, with the government of Japan likely to provide a low-interest $500 million loan, according to Yangon City project director Toe Aung. (more…)

Burmese police seized around US $140,000 worth of pseudo-ephedrine-based cold and flu tablets and a large cache of weapons in Tamu, Sagaing Division, on Sunday, according to local sources and state-media reports. (more…)

Last Tuesday afternoon, the Thai Navy stopped a fishing boat off the coast of the holiday island of Phuket. It wasn’t a routine procedure however – naval officers couldn’t board the rickety looking craft because there wasn’t room for them to stand on it. Every single inch of it was packed with desperate human beings from neighbouring Burma. (more…)

Sri Lanka’s navy on Sunday rescued 138 Bangladeshis and Myanmar nationals from a sinking fishing vessel off the island’s east coast, officials said. (more…)

High wages in Thailand are likely to keep the majority of Burmese migrant workers here over the next three years, a labour researcher says. (more…)

Myanmar’s Ministry of Finance and Revenue announced on January 30 that loans from Japan will be used in the education, health, social and administrative sectors, including a focus on people-oriented development projects. (more…)

For journalists in Myanmar, the limits to what can be published have receded so fast over the past two years that they can sometimes appear indistinct. Reports about corruption and malpractice in the government have become commonplace, along with land confiscations and strikes sparked by oppressive working conditions. (more…)

As from today, Mizzima will refer to the country as “Myanmar” on its English-language website. (more…)

The Chin National Front (CNF), an ethnic armed group from western Burma, reached a ceasefire agreement with the country’s government in January 2012. Edith Mirante from Project Maje, which documents human rights and environmental issues in Burma, recently interviewed Cheery Zahau, 31, a Chin who promotes women’s empowerment and human rights training through her local and international work. (more…)

The ministry recently announced that tourism arrivals through all gateways topped one million in 2012. Why did we see such a spike in tourism last year? (more…)