Tuesday, October 13th, 2015


The Office of the Commander-in-Chief (Army) this week issued a directive through the Irrawaddy Division government requesting that local media refrain from stipulating the military ranks of ethnic leaders in their reporting, journalists told The Irrawaddy.
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Burma will need nearly US$5 million and 18 months to finish repairing extensive damage to the nation’s rail network in the wake of August’s floods disaster.
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A court in Mandalay’s Amarapura Township sentenced four student protesters to several months in prison on Friday for charges related to anti-government graffiti on the grounds of Yadanabon University.
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Myanmar’s military threatened on Thursday to attack the headquarters of an ethnic rebel army if it fails to withdraw from its positions before the signing of a nationwide cease-fire agreement between the central government and other ethnic armies on Oct. 15, sources said.
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Tensions are building in ruby-rich Mong Hsu township after the Tatmadaw warned that it would attack the headquarters of the Shan State Progressive Party/Shan State Army (SSPP/SSA) unless the armed ethnic group withdrew from a key base camp.
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Yangon will need around 75,000 new apartments to be built each year to accommodate the city’s growing population, but contractors are struggling to come anywhere close to this target.
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Documents obtained by Mizzima include the unreleased reformist manifesto of former USDP Chairman Thura U Shwe Mann and internal polling data which show that a “worst case scenario” for the USDP could see them annihilated in the upcoming election.
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The outcome of Myanmar’s forthcoming national elections will do nothing to reduce the military’s business control over natural resources, but the return of a USDP-led government should ensure a continuing pro-business outlook from Nay Pyi Taw, a study said.
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Saw Thein Htun’s quest to win a seat in the Arakan State Parliament has hit something of a snag: he is not allowed to campaign.

The National League for Democracy (NLD) candidate for the Buthidaung-2 constituency on the Bangladeshi border, Saw Thein Htun told The Irrawaddy on Friday that he had been prevented by locals from canvassing in several locations, most recently the Arakanese Buddhist village of Thar Si.
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Sein Myat Maung is not swayed by the campaign stump speeches of Burma’s two major ethnic Mon parties seeking voters’ favor here.

That is partly because he’s firmly set on voting for the National League for Democracy (NLD), but also because he simply doesn’t understand the pitches being made by the Mon alternatives.
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Burma’s Nov. 8 election will do little to further the political aspirations of ethnic minority groups, a new report posits, downplaying the significance of the historic vote for long-oppressed minorities within a system of governance that will continue to centralize authority and afford powerful political prerogatives to the military, regardless of the poll’s outcome.
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A declaration by Daw Aung San Suu Kyi that she intends to lead the next government if she wins at the polls next month – despite being barred from the presidency – has triggered fierce debate over the implications of her intentions, which were also seen as throwing down a gauntlet to the military.
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Taking a page from the strategic playbook of the major political parties, five candidates from the National Democratic Force yesterday began using decorated vehicles to campaign in the Nay Pyi Taw Council area.
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Fighting between soldiers from the government’s Border Guard Force (BGF) and a splinter group of the Democratic Karen Benevolent Army (DKBA) occurred yesterday at around 10am and continued into today on the old Kawkareik-Myawaddy Road, Karen News reported on 9 October.
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Burma Border Guard Police (BGP) in Rakhine State have been charging Rohingyas travelling from Maungdaw Northside to central Maungdaw a toll since 1 October according to Ali Ahmed a passenger who had to pay the toll.
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Leaders of a mass strike at the Han Jen garment factory have continued talks with factory bosses, continuing to lobby for the demands of picketing workers who have been staging a sit-in and symbolic hunger strikes outside the factory gates since Monday.
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As was to be expected the backlash against the approval of the minimum wage has led to punitive attacks not on the Government but rather the local workforce. It had already been known during discussions of the passing of the Minimum Wage Law that the Garment Industry especially was preparing to push through the point that it could not increase the salary to the minimum amount without significant job losses. While job losses have not so far been on the scale anticipated, employers have found other ways of shouldering the extra costs often by punishing their employees.
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The International Finance Corporation (IFC) is planning to invest $40 million in a 225 megawatt combined cycle gas turbine power plant at Mandalay according to the dealstreetasia website on 8 October.
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