Wednesday, August 17th, 2016


The Union Peace Dialogue Joint Committee (UPDJC) continued its second-day meeting in Nay Pyi Taw yesterday with discussions on approved agendas for the Union Peace Conference (UPC) –21st Century Panglong, formation of a joint committee for holding the UPC, and matters related to the number of participants to the conference, state media reported on 17 August.

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Outcomes of the recent meeting on reviewing the framework for political dialogue in Rangoon were submitted to the Union Peace Dialogue Joint Committee (UPJC) in capital Naypyidaw yesterday.

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In response to the 8 signatory ethnic armed organization (EAO)s’ formal request on 11 August, State Counselor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi will soon be calling the long-neglected Joint Implementation Coordination Meeting (JICM) into session, according to reports form Naypyitaw yesterday.

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Plans are underway to form a new commission to resolve the communal and humanitarian crisis in Arakan State, which will include Muslim and Buddhist Arakanese representatives—but from Rangoon rather than Arakan State.

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The Kamayut Township police have brought charges against seven Burmese nationalists on Tuesday who, in April, protested outside the US Embassy in Rangoon against the American mission’s use of the word “Rohingya.” A trial is scheduled for August 30.

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According to President’s Office spokesman Zaw Htay, the Burmese government has invited all ethnic armed groups to the upcoming peace talks, whether or not they are signatories to the Nationwide Ceasefire Agreement (NCA), and is also prepared to entertain the notion of allowing the three militias previously left out of negotiations – the Arakan Army (AA), Ta’ang Nationalities Liberation Army (TNLA), and the Kokang-based Myanmar National Democratic Alliance Army (MNDAA) – to attend.

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Authorities in Myanmar have closed more than 450 cases against activists following requests from the nation’s top two leaders, Tin Myint, permanent secretary of the Home Affairs Ministry, said Tuesday.

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Jade traders in upper Burma urged the government to stop jade mining in Kachin State’s Hpakant and Lone Khin regions to prevent the decline of the local jade market.

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Several representatives of the Naga community in northwestern Burma have reacted angrily to a government announcement that the deadly measles virus, which recently struck the region, has been contained.

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State Counsellor and Foreign Minister Aung San Suu Kyi left for China today at the invitation of Premier Li Keqiang.

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Discussion about a fourth option for the Myitsone dam project has generated great interest in Myanmar and China since late June. The fourth option – outlined in a commentary by Mr Joern Kristensen in the June 30 issue of Frontier – calls for the cancellation of the controversial project and for China and Myanmar to move ahead, and cooperate on other, mutually agreed hydropower projects.

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Since Myanmar’s landmark election in November 2015, the National League for Democracy government has publicly condemned the use of so-called hate speech on several occasions and indicated that a new law may be drafted to tackle the problem. The issue is particularly evident in online attacks against Muslims, women and LGBT people. While Muslims receive most of such attacks, women have also received anonymous threats for standing up for women’s rights and for LGBT people targeted for abuse.

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The role of Civil Society Organizations emerged in Burma during the late 1990s led by students and citizen journalists in Yangon. The term “CSO” has been used in both the Burmese and English media over the past 30 years.

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It’s complicated: In an interview with The Irrawaddy, longtime Burma expert Bertil Lintner assesses the many interests at play during State Counselor Aung San Suu Kyi’s visit to China on Wednesday.

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