Tuesday, September 13th, 2016


Karen National Union (KNU) and the New Mon State Party (NMSP) officials reached an agreement that should prevent any further fighting between them at a meeting on 11 September.

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Delegations from the Ta’ang National Party (TNP) and Shan State Army-South (SSA-S) met in the northern Thai city of Chiang Mai on Monday to discuss reducing hostilities between the ethnic Shan militia and the Ta’ang National Liberation Army (TNLA).

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Former members of the Arakan League for Democracy (ALD) spoke out at a meeting in Rangoon in support of splitting from the Rakhine Nationalities Development Party (RNDP), two years after the two parties merged to form the Arakan National Party (ANP).

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A Rakhine State lawmaker forged ahead yesterday with an effort to continue stoking controversy over the recent formation of an advisory commission for the state chaired by former UN secretary general Kofi Annan.

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Kachin ethnic politicians have cracked down hard on an attempt by Lisu and Red Shan activists to call for their own state within Myanmar. In a statement issued on September 7, the Kachin Political Cooperation Committee announced its objections to the demand, which was voiced at the 21st-century Panglong Conference.

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Toothless. Ineffective. Weak. Since its formation in 2011, the Myanmar National Human Rights Commission has been a lightning rod for criticism.

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Education Minister U Myo Thein Gyi told lawmakers in the Amyotha Hluttaw yesterday that educational development in ethnic minority areas is directly linked to the success or failure of Myanmar’s peace process.

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Myanmar needs to enact 48 laws as a matter of priority, the Legal Affairs and Special Cases Assessment Commission has told parliament, with legislation aimed at tackling violence against women at the top of that list.

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Myanmar’s parliament has approved the government’s budget support plan to borrow 3.9 trillion kyats ( 3.18 billion U.S. dollars) from the central Bank of Myanmar for the government deposit account for 2016-17 financial year, parliament sources said Tuesday.

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The Tatmadaw continues to produce and use landmines, deputy defence minister Major General Myint Nwe told parliament yesterday, emphasising that this activity was kept to a minimum.

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The 4th Great Mekong Subregion (Myanmar) Power Summit & Expo 2016 – the premier meeting place for local government and power developers to connect with regional investors and understand how to create a win-win partnership in a time where cooperation and collaboration is more important than ever – is slated on Nov. 29-Dec. 1, 2016 at Sule Shangri-La Hotel Yangon.

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Following a deadly disease outbreak that has taken the lives of dozens of children in a remote area of Sagaing Region, the health ministry has deployed basic medical staff to the underserved community.

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The divisional government launched an investigation into a resort and culture park under construction on the eastern bank of the famous Thaungthaman Lake outside the city of Mandalay, after local residents complained about the impact of the project.

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Burma’s de facto leader Aung San Suu Kyi and Theresa May agreed that Britain must remain an outward-facing country in the aftermath of Brexit during a Downing Street meeting.

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As State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi prepares to go to Washington this week for a highly anticipated visit, members of the ethnic Kachin diaspora are highlighting the ongoing conflict in Burma’s north to call for continued sanctions against the country’s armed forces and businessmen close to the former military regime.

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When the US government relaxed sanctions on Burma’s state-run companies and banks but stopped short of lifting all sanctions in May this year, the US Chamber of Commerce was not pleased.

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Public financial management reforms are central to Myanmar’s entire transition. Improvements to social services like garbage collection, investment in new roads and bridges, and raising standards of health and education are all premised on the government being able to raise more revenue and then effectively spend it achieving policy goals. In order for the National League for Democracy government to achieve its goals for economic and political reform, it is therefore a critical area for prioritisation.

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The Irrawaddy speaks with veteran Burma scholar David Steinberg about burgeoning US-Burma relations, an anticipated easing of US sanctions, and the prospect of military-to-military engagement between the two countries.

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