Monday, June 13th, 2016


An agreement has been reached on the revision of the framework for political dialogue at the meeting of the Preparatory Subcommittee-1 for the Union Peace Conference, state media reported on 12 June.

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Some 300 local villagers displaced by fighting between Burmese government forces and the Shan State Army-North (SSA-North) began returning to their homes in Hsipaw Township on Monday.

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A seven-year-old girl in Magwe is the latest person in Burma to be electrocuted after stepping in a puddle, according to a report by state media on Monday.

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At least six people have been killed and thousands left homeless in flood disasters across Arakan State as this year’s monsoon sweeps the region.

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It’s a common scene in movies: The frightened occupants of a house realise there’s an intruder on the premises. They call the police who are quickly on the scene and arrest the intruder.

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Last week, more than 10 Mon civil society organizations (CSO) demanded that the Mon State Chief Minister review the government’s plan to issue household registration cards to internal migrant workers who have moved from Upper Burma to work on rubber plantations and salt farms in Mon State.

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Fissures have appeared within the Buddhist extremist organization Ma Ba Tha, after two senior members of the monk-run, anti-Muslim organization traded barbs on social media over the weekend.

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U Win Myint has rounded out the end of the latest parliamentary session by quashing suggestions of constitutional reform in the near future, telling reporters that the government acknowledged that it did not have the power to amend the charter for the time being.

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Burma’s newly reformed investment commission will this month start scrutinizing some US$2.3 billion in proposed foreign investment projects that have been held up since April, a senior official said on Friday.

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The Burma Army has deployed armed military drones in ethnic minority regions in Burma’s north, likely for surveillance and surgical strikes, said a military analyst in a report for the consultancy IHS Jane’s.

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With the government’s biannual gem emporium looming at the end of this month, prices for Burmese jade have continued to slide against weakening demand.

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China’s refusal to deliver on pledged aid for the construction of a tunnel across Myanmar’s Irrawaddy River has left the Irrawaddy Division’s irrigation department millions of dollars in debt and hundreds of thousands of people at risk of flooding in what could be yet another case of Beijing’s troubling record on infrastructure in Southeast Asia, an official told The Irrawaddy.

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Visiting Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu thanked the Burmese government on Monday for its efforts to quell racial and sectarian violence in Arakan State, expressing a desire for mutual cooperation to resolve the issue.

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It is four years since religious violence erupted in Rakhine State and a settlement of the conflict between its ethnic Rakhine and Muslim communities remains elusive.

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Aung San Suu Kyi’s new civilian government is in a unique position to radically change the status of ethnic relations in Myanmar. As Suu Kyi’s remarks alongside Secretary of State John Kerry on May 22 made clear, minority rights and civil strife are still pressing issues that the international community is waiting for her to address. In her statements, she prioritized finding “a practical solution” to these matters. Such options are available to her. Using her malleable set of responsibilities and public image, she can implement new policies to end the civil wars in her country by appealing to the historical precedent set by her father in the Panglong Agreement of 1947.

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Ever since the electoral triumph of the National League for Democracy (NLD) in Myanmar, speculation has been growing about its foreign policy — how much continuity and change will occur — under the new government relative to its predecessors.

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Dominik Stillhart is director of operations at the International Committee of the Red Cross, based in Geneva. During a weeklong visit to Myanmar that began on May 19, he visited sites in Kachin and northern Shan states where the ICRC is providing assistance to internally displaced people and also met Ministry of Home Affairs officials in Nay Pyi Taw. He spoke to Frontier at the ICRC’s Yangon office.

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