Military


Arakan State Chief Minister U Mra Aung has said that Arakanese nationals who were displaced by fighting between the Burma Army and the Arakan Army, will not be shifted without their consent.
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President Thein Sein hailed the “triumph” of Myanmar’s transition of power Thursday, in a last address to a military-dominated parliament before it makes way for a historic new legislature led by Aung San Suu Kyi’s pro-democracy party.
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When leaders of Aung San Suu Kyi’s National League for Democracy huddled this month to discuss the transfer of power in Burma, they quickly reached decisions on who from the party should take the key posts in the next parliament.
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On the penultimate sitting day of the outgoing Parliament, lawmakers voted to approve the Presidential Security Bill that guarantees lifetime personal security and legal immunity for former heads of state.
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Burma’s Union Parliament decided on Thursday not to approve a proposal from outgoing President Thein Sein to bring immigration matters under the authority of the military-controlled Home Affairs Ministry, as lawmakers opted not to consider the bureaucratic reshuffle with less than two days until their terms end.
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When the people of Myanmar went to the polling stations last November, I bet they shared the same overwhelming sentiments that swept over Indonesians back in 1999. Like their Myanmar cousins, Indonesians too were at the dawn of a momentous change – their biggest ever since breaking away from colonial rule.
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Among the many challenges facing the incoming National League for Democracy (NLD)-led government will be addressing the political aspirations of Burma’s ethnic nationalities. Federalism was high on the agenda at the recent Union Peace Conference, with some ethnic leaders proposing a system of eight ethnic states to replace the current configuration of seven states and seven divisions. The Irrawaddy’s Htet Naing Zaw recently spoke with Khun Htun Oo, chairman of the Shan Nationalities League for Democracy (SNLD), about the role of ethnic peoples in building a federal Union.
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What is women’s role in conflict, peacebuilding and democratization? What are the consequences of women’s inclusion and exclusion from the peace process? These are some of the questions explored in Women in Conflict and Peace, International IDEA’s publication was launched on 26 January in Myitkyina, the capital of Kachin State the organisation said in a press release.
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When leaders of Aung San Suu Kyi’s National League for Democracy huddled this month to discuss the transfer of power in Myanmar, they quickly reached decisions on who from the party should take the key posts in the next parliament.
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Myanmar’s outgoing army-backed president asked parliament Tuesday to extend the powers of the military-controlled home affairs ministry by giving it control over immigration, officials said.
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After holding historic elections in November, Myanmar, also known as Burma, is undergoing a remarkable transition to constitutional democratic governance. I recently led a congressional delegation to the country to evaluate this sweeping change firsthand and gauge how the United States can continue to support Myanmar’s movement toward the free world.
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Fighting flared again on Tuesday in Kawkareik Township, Karen State, where Karen rebels accuse a joint force comprising the Burma Army and Karen Border Guard Force (BGF) of burning down at least 10 houses in the village of Pyar Pin a day earlier.
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A coalition of three groups released a report on Monday highlighting the ailing health of 53 student demonstrators and supporters detained since March and urging their “immediate and unconditional” release.
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Phil Blackwood, a New Zealand bar manager convicted of insulting religion in a high-profile case last year, was quietly released from Insein Prison on January 22, the same day he was granted amnesty, according to two political prisoner groups. His Myanmar colleagues, the owner and co-manager of the bar, have not been freed and were not pardoned, the same groups said.
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Burma freed 101 political prisoners last week, bringing the number of political detainees released by President Thein Sein to more than 1,200 since his semi-civilian government took power in 2011, a watchdog group said on Monday.
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Two Arakanese men, Hsan Win Tun and Kyaw Soe Moe, aka Arno, were arrested by Burma Army personnel in Sittwe Central Market on 22 January and taken to an unknown location, according to their families.
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Following recent calls for their own state the Red Shan of northern Burma announced that they have formed an armed group called the Shanni Nationalities Army (SNA) on social media last week.
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While reports emerged last week of the National League for Democracy (NLD)’s potential appointees to speakership positions in Parliament, the party’s plans for president have been kept out of the media spotlight.
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Aung San Suu Kyi and Myanmar’s powerful army chief held fresh talks Monday on the country’s dramatic political transition, days before a military-dominated legislature hands over to the most democratic parliament in generations.
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Participants at a world peace conference attended by President U Thein Sein slammed Myanmar for being “weak” on responding to religious conflict.
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