Inside Burma


Aung San Suu Kyi, chairwoman of the National League for Democracy (NLD), addressed reporters in Naypyidaw on Wednesday, vowing to streamline media relations between the Parliament and the press and conveying her confidence in two newly-appointed parliamentary speakers and their deputies. Below is an abridged transcript of her remarks, which were delivered to the press at her Rule of Law Committee office in the capital and shared online by social media users.
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A proposal to suspend Article 59(f) of Burma’s Constitution to allow Aung San Suu Kyi to assume the presidency may be put before the Parliament as soon as next week, according to at least two National League for Democracy (NLD) lawmakers, who wished to remain anonymous.
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With the incoming National League for Democracy (NLD)-led government pledging to cut or consolidate government ministries to reduce state expenditure, many observers have pointed to the Ministry of Information as in line to be scrapped.
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The National League for Democracy’s environmental conservation committee for Shan State will dig an artesian well for villagers living in the proximity of Heho Township’s Let Maung village in a bid to supply them with water after they have been hit by shortages, the Global New light of Myanmar reported on 3 February.
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Set up five years ago, Myanmar’s National Human Rights Commission (MNHRC) was part of a charm offensive mounted by President U Thein Sein’s quasi-civilian government that succeeded in attracting international publicity and funding. Any legitimacy it may have held has taken a battering since.
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A recently announced plan by the Arakan State government to resettle dozens of conflict-displaced households appears to have been optimistic, according to a civil society leader who claims the state had grossly underestimated costs.
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The international community and local private dailies heralded the first day of the new Parliament’s term on Monday, but less effusive and generous in its coverage of the historic milestone was Burma’s state-run media.
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An official of the Ministry of Religious Affairs has cautioned that a graphic video posted on social media by nationalist monk U Wirathu dramatising the rape and murder of a Buddhist woman by Muslim men could lead to court action.
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Daw Aung San Suu Kyi should never be allowed to become president by changing the constitution, according to a hard-hitting opinion piece published in the military-owned Myawady newspaper yesterday.
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The Lanmadaw Township court has filed additional charges against four jailed Chinese embassy protesters under Section 18.
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Many residents of Pyin Oo Lwin have objected to a presidential plan to lease 272.15 acres of farmland near the National Kandawgyi Botanical Gardens as industrial land to current ministers, former generals and senior military officers.
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The new Rakhine (Arakan) State Parliament will convene on 8 February 2016, according to the Rakhine State Parliament Office in Sittwe.
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Nat Nat Nwe was once arrested, stripped, beaten and held in a cell for 14 days just because she tried to walk home alone at night. The quiet 40-year-old is convinced she was targeted because she is transgender.
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The Oriental Highway Company will upgrade the existing Mandalay-Muse two-lane highway to a four-lane asphalt road with a US$ 300 million investment.
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Led by a triumphant Aung San Suu Kyi, Myanmar is preparing to take a historic leap into uncharted territory, having only known democracy for 14 of its 1,000 years of recorded history. Suu Kyi, who scored a stunning victory in last year’s elections, follows a procession of absolute monarchs, British colonial rulers and home-bred generals who are still standing tall in the wings.
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Crushed and humbled by the voters, the once-mighty Union Solidarity and Development Party now faces years in the political wilderness – if, indeed, it survives as a viable party at all. Persistent rumour has it that some of its most prominent and independent-minded members, led by former party chair and parliamentary Speaker Thura U Shwe Mann, could soon face expulsion.
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Displaced by fighting between the government and an ethnic armed group, about 1,600 villagers in southern Shan State are in urgent need of assistance, according to the Shan State Peace Task Force, a peace advocacy group that recently visited the affected population.
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Over a hundred and twenty homeless people currently staying at a makeshift camp in Pyinoolwin are in urgent need of medicine and clothes, a volunteer, Saung Thazin, told Mizzima.
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Over 250 residents protested in northern Shan State’s Namkham Township on Wednesday demanding the release of twelve civilians who were allegedly arrested by the Ta’ang National Liberation Army (TNLA), according to a local source.
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On Monday morning, Myanmar convened its first democratically-elected Parliament in more than half a century, a historic moment unthinkable just five years ago in a country locked under decades of military rule.
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