Wednesday, June 8th, 2016


Authorities in Arakan State have launched a citizenship verification programme in three predominantly Muslim townships.

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Authorities conducting a census of Muslim residents in three townships in western Myanmar’s Rakhine state have encountered opposition from the inhabitants of one village who refuse to provide information because they are not allowed to mention their race and religion in order to qualify for national identification cards, a local official said.

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The committee announced that it would fine shops that did not follow rules and regulations, but said efforts to reduce betel consumption have been limited due to the large number of people who chew the substance in Myanmar’s second-largest city.

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The recent deaths of three ethnic Palaung, also called Ta’ang, in Shan State’s Namkham Township seem to have further entrenched the lines of ethnic conflict in the state.

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The Rangoon Division parliament is planning to amend ten regional laws pertaining to infrastructure, transportation, freshwater fish farming, and alcohol regulation. Some have not been amended since the colonial era, and are seen as ill-suited to Rangoon’s present state of rapid development.

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The United Nationalities Federal Council (UNFC) will have its representatives meet with leaders of the Union Peace Dialogue Joint Committee (UPDJC) for a discussion and detailed enquiry into the 21 Century Panglong Conference, before the end of June.

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About 500 local residents protesting against rock quarrying near Oke Tar Dar Village in Paung Township, Mon State by the Long Life Aggregate Mining Company Limited marched to the company’s offices on 5 June.

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A Senior Buddhist monk, Parmaukkha, a member of the central committee of the powerful ultranationalist Buddhist monk organization Ma Ba Tha, has stepped down over political differences with the group, RFA reported on 7 June.

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Fellow journalists Tuesday criticised the jailing of a local BBC reporter, saying the sentence could damage the reputation of Myanmar’s new democratic government.

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The Myanmar Investment Commission (MIC) was reshuffled on Tuesday to include 11 new members, the President’s Office announced on Wednesday.

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A tribunal tasked with investigating allegations of a US$100 million gems heist that implicated senior members of the former administration has come to a conclusion, but will not be sharing its findings with the public.

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The government revealed plans yesterday to build 180,000 affordable housing units throughout Myanmar. U Min Htain, director general of the Department of Urban Housing and Development, made the announcement at a press conference held at the Ministry of Construction in Nay Pyi Taw.

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The Speaker of parliament has been criticised for apparently trying to dissuade MPs from asking questions that show the government in a poor light. Rakhine State MP U Pe Than compared current Speaker U Win Myint unfavourably with his predecessor, Thura U Shwe Mann, adding, “It looks like the Speaker is putting pressure on MPs not to criticise the government.”

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Burma’s energy minister told parliament on Tuesday that the country is on track to have universal access to electricity — but not until 2030.

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The Muse Central Economic Zone of Myanmar, which is located near its border with China in eastern Myanmar, will be completed in the fiscal year 2017-18, official media reported Wednesday.

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Lee Hsien Loong has asked Daw Aung San Suu Kyi to use her high profile in the international community to boost the status of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations during a visit to Nay Pyi Taw on Tuesday.

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Migrant rights groups are calling for Burma and Thailand to form an agreement that will ensure the process for Burmese migrants renewing documents is not strenuous, timely and expensive.

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How is democracy promoted around the world? What techniques are successful? Established state democracies are by no means the only inspiration for democracy or for good governance; these ideas can find inspiration in other cultures and societies, such as Myanmar.

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