Inside Burma


Stung by criticism after one of its members refused to credit the National League for Democracy (NLD)-led government of Aung San Suu Kyi with securing the release of dozens of student activists last Friday, the All Burma Federation of Student Unions (ABFSU) has issued a statement expressing gratitude for the move.
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Miss Universe Myanmar finalist Ei Phyo Thwe was killed Monday morning in an accident on the Rangoon-Mandalay Highway, dubbed Burma’s “Death Highway” for its high rate of traffic fatalities among motorists traveling between the country’s two biggest cities.
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Aung San Suu Kyi, Myanmar’s new de facto leader, has undergone an eye operation for cataracts.
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Newly appointed Rakhine State minister Kyaw Lwin says he will not accept the decision to dismiss him from the Arakan National Party (ANP) for accepting the ministerial job from the National League for Democracy (NLD).

The ANP announced that it would not take ministerial posts in the state government if it were not allowed to select the chief minister and appoint the cabinet. The ANP won a large majority of Rakhine State seats but the 2008 Constitution says that the central government can appoint the chief ministers and cabinet. The NLD won only eight Rakhine State parliamentary seats.

MP Kyaw Lwin accepted the state-level minister for agriculture, livestock, mining and forestry post in the NLD-led administration of MP Nyi Pyu. The ANP central executive committee (CEC) then dismissed him from the party.

Kyaw Lwin, ANP chairman for Ramree Township and also a CEC member, was elected for Ramree last November.

He said he made the decision to accept the job with difficultly after his constituents urged him to do so and threatened to unseat him if he refused.

“The party has not informed me yet. They cannot dismiss me from the party because I am a CEC member. I will stand as a member of the ANP, whatever they say. I will represent the party and will not break its policies. I will cooperate with the NLD if its policies are the same. It wants Rakhine State to develop and so do I,” said Kyaw Lwin.

The Arakan League for Democracy and Rakhine National Development Party founded the ANP, although Kyaw Lwin came from a third party.

“He is downgrading our party’s dignity besides he broke the rules and regulations. He shamed the Rakhine people. The voters are thinking we cannot control our members,” said Tun Aung Kyaw, ANP general secretary.

Link: http://www.elevenmyanmar.com/local/anp-rebel-refuses-accept-dismissal

The financial Investigation Unit (FIU) is stepping up its awareness-raising activities to combat money laundering and terrorist financing in Myanmar.
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Kyaw Zwa Moe: Welcome to Dateline Irrawaddy! This week, we’ll discuss the State Counselor Bill, which the National League for Democracy (NLD) submitted to Parliament last week, as well as Daw Aung San Suu Kyi’s guidelines for civil servants accepting gifts. Lawyer U Ko Ni and former Lower House lawmaker U Ye Htun, from Hsipaw Township, will join me for the discussion. I’m Irrawaddy English editor Kyaw Zwa Moe.
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Myanmar’s new government released scores of jailed activists on Friday, just over a week after assuming power, and said it was preparing to pardon 100 more people serving sentences for political offences.
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Amid news of charges being cleared against political detainees, in a court in Mandalay’s Chanayethazan Township, two Muslim interfaith activists were sentenced to two more years in prison—with labor—on Friday for allegedly associating with unlawful organizations.
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The Burma Army is continuing to send reinforcements into Wan Hai, headquarters of the Shan State Progressive Party/Shan State Army (SSPP/SSA) in Shan State’s Kyethi Township, said an SSPP/SSA central executive committee member.
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Six Arakanese youths, convicted of being insurgent members of Arakan Army, was convicted and sent to Sittwe prison on Monday by the Kyauk Taw township court of Arakan State.
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The Shan Nationalities League for Democracy (SNLD) elected a new central committee during recent township meeting in Kyaukme Township, A total of 265 representatives from 46 townships attended the township meeting in northern Shan State.
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The Karen National Union (KNU) in Dupalayar District is preparing three different areas in Burma for returning refugees from Thai camps. A 22-member group of officials from the Thai Noh Hpo refugee camp, Karen Refugee Committee (KRC), Thai authorities, NGOs workers, and The Border Consortium (TBC) recently met with KNU officials to discuss upcoming resettlement operations.
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A coalition of Arakanese environmental groups and political parties are hoping to collect 300,000 signatures to petition the national government to decentralize natural resource sharing.
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This year it is Mandalay that has broken the bounds of all reason or responsibility by threatening to imprison women who appear in outfits deemed too skimpy during water festival.
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Following the release of dozens of student protestors in Myanmar earlier today, the Tharawaddy Court in Myanmar released several more protestors including Phyoe Phyoe Aung, a student leader, and her husband, Lin Htet Naing. The move came after the new government announced on April 7 that it would work to release all prisoners of conscience as soon as possible.
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Immediately following her appointment as State Counselor, Aung San Suu Kyi announced plans to secure the release of political prisoners and detained activists “as soon as possible.”
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Burma’s long-established ethnic Karen armed organization, the Karen National Union (KNU), has been preparing land and shelter for the possible return of civilians displaced internally and on the Thai-Burma border after more than six decades of civil war with government forces.
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Rangoon’s divisional parliament cancelled the former government’s plans to build two new flyovers in the commercial capital during the 2016-2017 fiscal year.
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Members of the European Burma Network (EBN) have called upon the new NLD government to act swiftly to start to address the Rohingya crisis in the country in a statement released on 6 April.
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Senior journalists in Burma are calling on new Information Minister Pe Myint to bring further media reforms under the current National League for Democracy (NLD)-led government.
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