Monday, July 18th, 2016


Northern Burma’s Myitsone mega-project failed because its Chinese proponents systematically dismissed Kachin and Burmese nationalism. The Chinese hydropower developers’ strategy was what I call “anti-ethno-politics”: when the state, NGOs, businesses, or other actors try to depoliticise sensitive questions about how their own activities clash with a nationalism. Such anti-ethno-politics is the Chinese government’s dominant approach to ethnic minorities and economic development in China. But it clearly failed in Burma. Why?

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The 21st-century Panglong Conference will likely prove only partially inclusive, sources from the ethnic armed groups said yesterday.

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The eight armed groups that are signatories to the Nationwide Ceasefire Agreement (NCA) are holding a meeting in Chiang Mai on 18-20 July in preparation for a landmark summit in Kachin State’s Mai Ja Yang at the end of the month.

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Just a few months before 2012 by-elections, a group of concerned citizens worried about the fate of Myitsone gathered together at a location overlooking the confluence of three rivers in Myitkyina, Kachin State. A man walked to a podium with the assistance of a friend and said, with tears in his eyes, that the Ayeyarawady River was the lifeline of the whole of Myanmar and it’s endangered and near extinct flora and fauna would be diminished forever if and when the planned Myitsone hydropower dam was built there. The man was U Ohn an eminent environmentalist who loves his country.

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More than a thousand local residents in northern Shan State’s Lashio Township on Saturday staged a protest demanding an end to the arbitrary killing of civilians in the area.

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Myanmar’s de facto leader Daw Aung San Suu Kyi held landmark talks with senior rebel leaders on Sunday, as she strives to seal a ceasefire with a patchwork of ethnic minority militias that have battled the national army for decades.

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In the face of the ongoing persecution of the Rohingya ethnic minority in Myanmar, ASEAN cannot continue to look the other way, according to political analysts.

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Energy officials will seek to better connect ASEAN members’ electricity grids into a regional energy network over the next five years to better utilise the countries’ respective strengths and weaknesses in power generation, it was announced at a meeting of the bloc in Myanmar’s capital Nay Pyi Taw.

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Premier Li Keqiang has said China is willing to strengthen cooperation with Myanmar in support of the South-East Asian nation’s economic development and improvement of livelihood of its people, Xinhua reported on 17 July.

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Myanmar’s President U Htin Kyaw delivered a speech during the opening session of the 11th Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM), which took place in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia, on July 15 and 16.

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