Friday, June 3rd, 2016


The ruling National League for Democracy (NLD) government will open the door to all stakeholders in the peace dialogue process, taking a different approach from the former administration.

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The Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP), has said it will sue two Burmese weekly newspapers—the Myanmar Herald and the Messenger—along with other individuals, for defaming former President Thein Sein and the USDP in their coverage of the alleged embezzlement of 93 million euros (US$103.9 million) from an account linked to the Myanmar Gems Traders Association.

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In light of several recent deaths in Rangoon from hazardous electrical wires, a regional lawmaker on Thursday urged for more attention to be paid to the maintenance of the city’s faulty and often dangerous power lines.

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The government’s recent decision to resume citizenship verification in Rakhine State has generated fresh debate about the future and rights of the state’s Muslim community, most of whom are stateless.

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The state’s top Buddhist authority has said it will rein in the activities of hard-line nationalist monks participating in the Committee for the Protection of Nationality and Religion – also known as Ma Ba Tha.

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Buddhist monks of the nationalist Ma-Ba-Tha movement have opened a private high school on the outskirts of Rangoon this week, where they said they will provide free education for children and teach them to “protect race and religion” of Burma.

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Myanmar’s Kachin State Chief Minister Khet Aung Friday stressed the need for the governments of Myanmar and China to explore the best way of resolving the long-suspended Myitsone Dam project issue.

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A bill amending and repealing provisions of Burma’s colonial-era Ward or Village Tract Administration Law—which required citizens to register overnight guests—was approved in the Upper House of Parliament on Friday.

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In Thursday’s session of the Lower House of Parliament, an Arakan National Party (ANP) lawmaker asked whether the government intends to establish legal definitions for “political prisoners” and “political offenses.”

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A New Union-level committee established for Rakhine State began groundwork on June 1 when it visited IDP camps and held a meeting with community leaders.

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Former members of the Union Solidarity and Development Party said they would continue to seek a reversal of their April expulsion, but would not raise a legal complaint for fear of hurting the military-aligned party’s image.

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The military is refusing to cooperate in the investigation into the rape and murder of two Kachin teachers in northern Shan State

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Myanmar did not approve any foreign investments into the country in April or May because the government has yet to launch a new review committee, raising concerns that a rocky transition of power could deal a blow to the country’s economic growth.

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The Yangon Stock Exchange issued a warning against market manipulation this week, after a series of large orders were placed for shares in Myanmar Thilawa SEZ Holdings (MTSH) only to be cancelled just minutes before the matching time.

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The Burmese government’s proposed logging ban must be matched with robust implementation, stressed environmentalists, following the announcement from the Minister of Resources and Environmental Conservation Ohn Win that a nationwide ban would be in full effect before the end of Burma’s fiscal year, in April 2017.

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Bangladesh’s government began its first census of undocumented Rohingya refugees on Thursday, setting off fears that it might lead to a mass relocation or forcible repatriation of the refugees to Myanmar.

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“The scale and severity of human rights violations in Kachin State is one of the worst in Myanmar,” a lawyer told the International Commission of Jurists during a meeting in Myitkyina last month.

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U Kyaw Hla Aung, a renowned Rohingya leader, worked for decades as a clerk at Rakhine State Court, later becoming a lawyer. In the 1980s, he was debarred and imprisoned due to the military governments’ repressive policies towards the Muslim minority. He has now been jailed four times as a political prisoner; including two stints following the 2012 inter-communal violence.

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