November 2015


Htar Lone, chairman of the Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP) in Kayin state, sits despondently behind an empty desk in his eerily silent villa in Hpa-An, the state capital. Just a few days earlier his party, which has, in different guises, brutally run Myanmar for more than 50 years, suffered a resounding defeat. Of the 36 local and national parliamentary seats the USDP contested in Kayin state (formerly called Karen state), it won just six, down from the 17 it currently holds. (more…)

Only 4 out of 100 Mon candidates standing for election won seats in the 8 November general election. (more…)

The three Shan parties all lost seats in eastern Shan State to the the military-backed Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP) and Aung San Suu Kyi’s National League for Democracy (NLD) in the 8 November elections. (more…)

It is likely to take at least a year until constitutional change can be achieved, a National League for Democracy spokesperson says, rejecting speculation that the current parliament would agree to amend section 59(f) to allow Daw Aung San Suu Kyi to become president after her landslide election victory. (more…)

National League for Democracy chairwoman Aung San Suu Kyi met Union Parliament Speaker Shwe Mann on Thursday in Naypyidaw, with the two powerful parliamentarians agreeing to help see through a peaceful transfer of power following the NLD’s landslide victory in Burma’s Nov. 8 general election. (more…)

Martial law has been lifted in the Kokang area of Shan State following nine months of military rule imposed after war broke out with ethnic Chinese insurgents. (more…)

Only two days after Burma went to the polls, the Burmese army stepped up their military campaign against Shan State Army-North (SSA-N). (more…)

Aung San Suu Kyi will take the lead in Burma’s peace process following the transfer of power early next year, according to a spokesperson for her party, the National League for Democracy (NLD). (more…)

Burma’s Armed Forces continued their offensive on Kachin Independence Army (KIA) positions in Kachin State’s Mohnyin Township on Thursday, firing artillery rounds since 7 am, according to locals. (more…)

Amnesty International and FIDH have call on all UN member states to recognize the continued need for a resolution on the situation of human rights in Myanmar at the 70th session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA), in light of the ongoing human rights violations taking place in the country, the two organisations said in a joint statement on 16 November. (more…)

Amidst an ongoing clash between government troops and the Kachin Independence Army, DVB spoke to KIA representative La Nan. (more…)

DVB speaks to Min Ko Naing, the 88 Generation leader and former political prisoner who campaigned tirelessly for the National League for Democracy (NLD) during this recent election campaign period. (more…)

“Change” is a word that crops up in many conversations in Burma these days. Three years ago, when I last visited, the country’s biggest city, Rangoon, had no modern shopping centers, no ATMs, no night clubs. Now it has all of them, in startling profusion. Cars were relatively few; today there’s a traffic jam at every corner. In 2012, cell phone networks were so rudimentary as to be irrelevant, and finding a decent Internet connection was a struggle; Facebook, which welcomed its first users just a few months before I arrived, boasted a few thousand customers in the entire country. Today half of Burma’s population of fifty million has smartphones, and virtually all of those phones are connected to the Internet. Experts put the number of Facebook users at six and a half million. (more…)

In assessing the outcome of the Burma Socialist Programme Party’s stewardship of the nation and the economic consequences of the Burmese Way to Socialism, Dr Maung Maung – the last president of the country under the regime – made the following observations. (more…)

With tens of millions of ballots cast and countless futures pondered, it has all come to this. Myanmar is forced to watch and wait as the National League for Democracy manoeuvres itself closer to power. (more…)

A week has now passed since Myanmar’s historic November 8 polls. Shortly after noon on November 13, the opposition National League for Democracy hit the required threshold of seats to pass legislation in the next parliament and ensure one of its two presidential candidates will take the top job come March 2016. (more…)

The landslide victory of Aung San Suu Kyi’s National League for Democracy (NLD) in last Sunday’s elections is a turning point in Myanmar’ s history. The NLD will have an opportunity to rule alone, given its super majority in the national parliament. (more…)

When Nobel Peace laureate Aung San Suu Kyi’s National League for Democracy (NLD) party forms government in Myanmar, it will face enormous limits that the military-drafted 2008 constitution places on the scope of a civilian government. Yet Suu Kyi still ought to be able to find enough room to make a difference. (more…)

Burma’s recent election will usher a sea of new faces into the national Parliament, installing a fresh batch of lawmakers who will select the next president—an as-yet-unknown figure that pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi has vowed to act “above.” (more…)

Welcoming the recent elections in Myanmar as ‘a new chapter in the country’s history,’ United Nations Special Rapporteur Yanghee Lee today reaffirmed her commitment to work with all parties in the country to improve the human rights situation there, saying “the people have expressed the will for change. There is no turning back now.” the UN News Centre reported on 16 November. (more…)

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