With an historic general election just seven months away, Burma’s opposition leader and Nobel laureate Aung San Suu Kyi is locked in a high-stakes showdown with a military-backed government that she says isn’t interested in reform. (more…)

Two police officers from an anti-narcotics task force were killed and three wounded when a bomb exploded in a volatile area of northeastern Myanmar near the border with China, a police official said on Monday. (more…)

Dressed in Chelsea football shorts and a wide-brimmed hat, Than Tun toils away in his paddy field on the outskirts of Rangoon, sweat pouring down his sinewy arms.

Gruelling work that once helped Burma become the world’s largest rice exporter is today a Herculean and often lonely job for farmers striving to return the impoverished nation to its former grain prowess. (more…)

Vietnam’s HAGL Looks for New Investor After Rangoon Property Deal Falls Through

Vietnamese conglomerate Hoang Anh Gia Lai (HAGL) is reportedly targeting Hong Kong and Singapore firms as it seeks a new investor for a massive real estate development going up on the eastern shore of Rangoon’s Inya Lake. (more…)

University charters that the government says will guarantee higher education institutions autonomy are being written for introduction later this year. (more…)

US President Barack Obama said Washington is concerned China is using its “sheer size and muscle” to push around smaller nations in the South China Sea, just hours after Beijing gave a detailed defense of its creation of artificial islands in the contested waterway. (more…)

Russian Atomic Energy Agency (Rosatom) is currently negotiating the possible cooperation with Myanmar over the supply of the advance nuclear technologies for the country to be able to increase its generating capacities.

Russia is holding preliminary negotiations with Myanmar over the supply of advanced nuclear technologies.

“Talks are being held with Myanmar on the creation of favorable conditions for the supply of advanced nuclear technologies to the country; the favorable conditions include the preparation of the legal framework and training of personnel,” Rosatom’s Deputy Director General Kirill Komarov said at the Japan Atomic Industrial Forum in Tokyo.

“Those are preliminary negotiations,” he stressed, “but like many other countries of the Asia-Pacific region, Myanmar is interested in increasing its generating capacities and could resort to the construction of a nuclear power plant.”

Earlier in March another Deputy Director General of Rosatom, Nikolay Spassky, visited Myanmar. Following his visit, the country’s Minister for Information Ye Htut confirmed that the country is interested in the peaceful use of nuclear energy in cooperation with Russia.

In May 2007 the two governments signed an intergovernmental cooperation agreement to establish a “nuclear studies” center in Myanmar, which will include a 10-megawatt, light water-moderated nuclear reactor.

The center also will include a medical isotope production laboratory and nuclear waste treatment and burial facilities. In addition, Russian universities will train 300–350 specialists for the center.

http://sputniknews.com/world/20150413/1020811204.html

Once again, Myanmar has been rocked by student demonstrations and, once again, the authorities have reacted with force, to the extent of using hired thugs in Yangon to beat and drag protesters away. (more…)

Earlier last week, the attempt of two Buddhist monks to prosecute those responsible for the violent suppression of peaceful protests at the Letpadaung copper mine were rejected. Despite the international condemnation of security forces’ handling of the protests – in which over 100 people were injured – those who orchestrated the crackdown will not face justice. (more…)

On this week’s edition of Dateline Irrawaddy, Tin Maung Maung Aye discusses his efforts to educate Burma’s child laborers through his Myanmar Mobile Education Project. This is a transcript of the second part of the discussions; the first part was published last week. (more…)

Five brokerage firms in Rangoon that arranged for the Burmese seamen to work on the Dalny Vostok have had their licenses revoked for not informing the men they would be working on a fishing ship. The operator of the ship also faces action for illegally accepting the workers.

In a DVB interview – see below – one of the survivors, Htet Ko Ko, says he was not aware he would be working on a fishing boat until he was taken there by speedboat. (more…)

A leader of the ethnic armed groups that comprise the Nationwide Ceasefire Coordination Team (NCCT) has accused the Burmese government of exaggerating the significance of an agreement made last week that was hailed in state media as a “historic” breakthrough in peace negotiations.
(more…)

Outside Letpadan Township Court on April 7, worried parents gathered to follow the proceedings of a trial against their children who had participated in a protest against the National Education Law. But most of the parents’ concerns were not about the legal system, in which they have little faith, but about the health of the young activists. (more…)

Two hundred and seventy seven servicemen of the Burmese military, including 50 officers, have had action taken against them for recruiting child soldiers, according to Deputy Home Affairs minister Brig-Gen Kyaw Zan Myint.
(more…)

Political and ethnic leaders have offered a lukewarm response to the latest round of 48-party dialogue with President Thein Sein, held in Naypyidaw on Wednesday.
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As President Thein Sein received a coterie of political leaders and ethnic representatives in Naypyidaw on Wednesday, Commander-in-Chief Snr-Gen Min Aung Hlaing was conspicuously absent, instead presiding over Navy exercises off the coast of Arakan State.
(more…)

MP Myat Nyana Soe from the National League for Democracy (NLD) tabled an urgent proposal at a Union parliament session on April 8 to prevent the appointment of permanent secretaries and chief directors during the term of the current administration.
(more…)

Foreign direct investment in Burma grew sharply during the 2014-2015 fiscal year and reached a record US$8 billion, a more than doubling of FDI compared to the year before, according to the Myanmar Investment Commission, which said the oil and gas sector was the main driver of growth.
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Local residents have declared that they reject the proposed Mong Ton hydropower dam project planned for the Salween River 20 kilometers north of Ta-Sa-Lar Village in Mong Ton Township in Eastern Shan State.
(more…)

Two Japanese and one Singaporean bank will become the first foreign banks to operate in Myanamar for decades when they open branches on April 23, as the country emerges from a long phase of economic isolation, state media reported Thursday.
(more…)

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