2011 PDF Print E-mail
Burma's military junta accused of torturing and killing ethnic rebels. The Guardian. Sunday 18 December 2011. War on Kachin rebels has intensified but gone entirely unnoticed, with abuses overshadowed by drive for political reform. Click here

Burmese women routinely harassed in New Delhi. The Times of India via Indo-Burma News. By Kim Arora. November 15, 2011: New Delhi. Cynthia has been living in fear for the past several days. She has often been changing her travel routes. Click here

Download the recent disturbing report, based on a culmination of data collected by Partners Relief and Development (http://www.partnersworld.org/index.html) investigators during an October 2011 fact finding mission. In preparing this report Partners collected information through local coordinators and eye witness interviews of at least 200 people affected by conflict in southern Kachin State. Click here

Burma's generals inch towards reform. Guardian Weekly. By Joseph Allchin. 25 November 2011. The Regime shows signs of embracing progress with the right to strike and release of prisoners, but many remain sceptical. Click here

Suu Kyi eyes seat in parliament. Democratic Voice of Burma. By AFP. 21 November 2011. Burma’s democracy champion Aung San Suu Kyi plans to run in upcoming by-elections, her spokesman said on Monday, days after her party decided to rejoin the official political arena. The National League for Democracy (NLD) move Friday to end its boycott of the political process came on the same day the military-dominated government received a seal of approval from Washington for a string of nascent reforms. Click here

Now is ‘the beginning of the beginning’. Mizzima News. Friday, 18 November 2011. (Editorial) – November 18, 2011, will go down as D-Day for not only the National League for Democracy (NLD) but for all the pro-democracy opposition forces and the people of Burma. For the past 23 years, the people have fought and died for a more democratic Burma. The Nobel Laureate Aung San Suu Kyi’s NLD party took an historic step by deciding to register as a legal political party and to resume its role as the country’s most successful democratic party. The vote by the 106 NLD central committee members was unanimous, although a small conservative minority still argues that it is too early to recognize real reform and trust the new government formed by President Thein Sein, a former general. Click here

For a Changing Myanmar, the Real Tests Lie Ahead. New York Times. By Thomas Fuller. November 18, 2011. Bangkok — From dictatorship to quasi democracy in less than a year, the pace of change in Myanmar has stunned even the most cynical observers of the country. The decision by Daw Aung San Suu Kyi to rejoin the country’s military-backed political system has offered a veneer of legitimacy for the reform efforts of President Thein Sein. Click here

Burma is changing, but not towards a simple state of freedom. Democratic Voice of Burma. By Joseph Allchin. 7 November 2011. Denial is not just a river in Egypt, Mark Twain once famously quipped. Indeed it seems it is a river in the memories of many international observers now swooning blindly over President Thein Sein and his reform agenda. Things are changing: the sun sets, the world spins, people, even dictators, evolve. The nature of current changes is, however, all too often hugely simplified to analyses that suggest either a clear misunderstanding of this country, or an intentional misrepresentation of its politics. Click here

Suu Kyi Says End of Sanctions Depends on Govt. The Irrawaddy. Monday, November 14, 2011. Burma's pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi said at a press conference on Monday that the end of Western economic sanctions depends on the degree of political and human rights progress the country’s quasi-civilian government makes. She said that the foreign nations which have imposed sanctions, including the US and the EU bloc, must view significant progress before they are lifted. Click here

Suu Kyi says 1990 election win ‘history’. Democratic Voice of Burma. By Joseph Allchin. 14 November 2011. Aung San Suu Kyi addressed the media today in a frenetic press conference at the National League for Democracy’s headquarters in Rangoon to mark a year since her release from house arrest. In her opening remarks she said that the rule of law was the most crucial challenge for democratisation in Burma, but closed with comments signalling that the party will put the disregarded 1990 election win behind them as a they forge a new path. Click here

Troops raze Kachin villages, locals flee. Democrtic Voice of Burma. 11 November 2011. Burmese troops burned down around 50 homes in a village in eastern Kachin state two days ago as they prepare for an offensive against the Kachin Independence Army (KIA), despite assertions from fleeing residents that no rebels inhabit the village. In response, the KIA has told locals living in areas close to the town of Waingmaw to leave, prompting some 3,000 people to join those who fled the razed Aungja village as they make for the border with China. Click here

US ready to be a ‘partner’ of Burma. Democratic Voice of Burma. By AFP. 11 November 2011. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said Thursday that the United States was ready to become a “partner” of Burma if it makes good on signs of reform in the long-isolated country. Speaking in Honolulu ahead of a weekend Asia-Pacific summit, Clinton praised what she called the “first stirrings of change in decades” in the country. “Many questions remain, including the government’s continued detention of political prisoners and whether reform will be sustained and extended to include peace and reconciliation in the ethnic minority areas,” Clinton said in a speech a week before she heads to Southeast Asia. Click here

Disempowering farmers puts a curse on Burma. Democratic Voice of Burma. By Nancy Hudson-Rodd. 3 November 2011. The 60 landless farmers who protested in Rangoon last week before being quickly dispersed by police provided an early acid test for the new civilian government’s commitment to reforms. Pho Phyu, a lawyer supporting farmers’ rights, who was among the seven subsequently arrested, said: “We have approached parliament for help but nothing happened, so we decided to take it to the streets”. Click here

Kachin Refugees Need Clothes, Blankets. The Irrawaddy News. By Lawi Weng. Friday, October 21, 2011. War refugees from Kachin State who are currently living in makeshift camps along the Sino-Burmese border are urgently in need of blankets, clothes and other supplies as wintry cold weather begins to affect the mountainous high-altitude region. Refugees began fleeing to the camps due to the outbreak of hostilities in June between Burmese government forces and Kachin Independence Army rebels in Kachin and Shan states. Click here

No let up in Rohingya forced labour. Democratic Voice of Burma. By Francis Wade. 19 October 2011. Evidence from surveys carried out among the ethnic Rohingya population of northern Arakan state suggest that contrary to pledges made by the new Burmese government, forced labour has not abated. Some communities in the impoverished region of western Burma claim that instances of forced labour had in fact risen since the elections in November last, as local authorities push ahead with the completion of infrastructural projects. Click here

China-backed Myitsone dam ‘suspended’. Democratic Voice of Burma. By Francis Wade. Sunday 2 October 2011. Reports in local Burmese media claim construction of the controversial Myitsone Dam, which has been the target of rare but sustained protests in Burma, has been suspended. The Weekly Eleven news journal said that a letter was sent to parliament today by President Thein Sein announcing a halt to operations in the country’s northern Kachin state. Click here

Burmese rebels block Asia's 'Suez Canal' Sydney Morning Herald. By Lindsay Murdoch. October 1, 2011. Burmese rebels are blocking construction vehicles using a road linking Thailand to a proposed $US60 billion ($A61.7 billion) development project at a sleepy Burmese seaport that its backers say will reshape Asia's trade routes. Rebels of the Karen National Union say the building of a massive transport and manufacturing hub at Tavoy, also called Dawei, on Burma's east coast, will destroy the environment and cause people to suffer. Click here

Good News, But the Story Isn’t Over. The Irrawaddy. Editorial. Friday, September 30, 2011. Burmese President Thein Sein decided to suspend work on the controversial Myitsone Dam project in Kachin State.“Save the Irrawaddy” campaign groups inside and outside of Burma, together with the people of Kachin State, opposed the US $3.6 billion project, expressing concern that construction of the massive dam will have huge negative consequences. Click here

Reactions to the halt of the Myitsone Dam project. Mizzima News. New Delhi. Friday, 30 September 2011. By Tun Tun. President Thein Sein sent a letter to both houses of the Burmese Parliament on Friday: “Our government is elected by the people so we must pay attention to the will of the people. We are obliged to focus on resolving the worries and anxieties of the people. Thus the Myitsone Dam project will be suspended during the term of our government.” Read community reactions to the news here. Click here

Burma eases access to news websites. The Age. September 17, 2011. Burma's repressive government has allowed access to banned news websites for the first time in years, including several operated by exiled dissidents. The unannounced move is the latest step by the nation's new leaders to boost hope, however faint, that authoritarian rule could finally be easing. Click here

News websites unblocked. Democratic Voice of Burma. By Naw Noreen. 16 September 2011. Internet users in Burma said the government has lifted a ban on foreign-based news websites yesterday, making them accessible for the first time since they were blocked in 2003, they welcomed the move saying that they hope it will remain this way. Click here

DVB VJ given additional 10 yrs in jail. Democratic Voice of Burma. By Joseph Allchin. 14 September 2011. A young reporter for the Democratic Voice of Burma has been given an additional 10 years in prison after being found guilty of breaching Burma’s notorious Electronics Act. Click here

After all this time, Burma's Lady is not for turning. The Age. August 20, 2011. By Lindsay Murdoch, South-east Asia Correspondent. Some interesting developments in recent days have Burma watchers cautiously optimistic. Has it dawned on the generals that if the country they call Myanmar is to shed its pariah status, they must include Suu Kyi in a process of reconciliation? Click here

Driven from Burma, scorned by Bangladesh. Democratic Voice of Burma. Thursday 21 July 2011. By Michael Gabaudan. It’s the “Rohingya problem.” Burma’s history of brutal persecution of the Rohingya – coupled with their lack of citizenship rights – have forced hundreds of thousands of people to flee to neighbouring Bangladesh. The plight of the Rohingya originates with the Burmese government’s abuses of this minority. Click here

Burma a top source country for refugees. By Francis Wade. Democratic Voice of Burma. Tuesday 21 June 2011. Burma produces the world’s fifth highest number of refugees, above that of both war-torn Sudan and Colombia, according to a UN report released today to mark World Refugee Day. Click here

Physicians for Human Rights (PHR) found evidence of crimes against humanity in the first widespread survey of Burma's Chin State. Its report was released in January 2011. Life Under the Junta: Evidence of Crimes Against Humanity in Burma’s Chin State provides the first quantitative data of human rights violations against the people of Chin State in Western Burma. Click here for the press release. Click here for the full report

Australia must pile pressure on Burma’s government. Democratic Voice of Burma, Wednesday 20 July 2011. By Zetty Brake. Click here

Aung San Suu Kyi's idea of freedom offers a radical message for the west. By Madeline Bunting. The Guardian. Sunday 26 June 2011. The Burmese heroine's Reith lectures expose our patronising attitudes to Buddhism, and injects fresh meaning into a concept we have abused. Click here

Kachin raped, killed by Burmese troops. By Maung Too. Democratic Voice of Burma. Tuesday 21 June 2011. Seven Kachin women have been raped in separate attacks by Burmese troops in the country’s north, four of whom were subsequently murdered, a rights group has told DVB. Click here

Aids and HIV: 30 years on, millions of lives are being saved. By Sarah Bosely, Health Editor. The Guardian. Friday 3 June 2011. Figures from the WHO show a bigger increase in people from poor countries accessing drugs than ever before. Click here

In Burma, Big Brother controls the Internet. Wednesday, 20 April 2011. By Thea Forbes. Mizzima News. Burma’s xenophobic military-dominated government enforces a strictly Orwellian regime of politicized censorship in order to control and restrict the Burmese people’s freedom of expression and access to information via the Internet. Click here

Water shortage looms over most of Chin State. By Van Biak Thang. Chinland Guardian. 24 April 2011. People in Chin State have faced a severe shortage of water due to problems resulting from the dry season and the 'non-operational' water supply systems still in use across the northwestern State. Click here

Unofficial survey: 25 percent of people in Chin State have malaria. Friday 08 April 2011. Tun Tun. New Delhi (Mizzima) More than 25 percent of the people in Chin State are infected with malaria and an estimated 20 percent die from the disease, according to a Indo-Burma group that conducted a private, unofficial health survey. Click here

President’s 30 unilateral powers revealed, By Francis Wade. Democratic Voice of Burma. Friday 8 April 2011. Burma’s new president will not require consent from parliament over matters ranging from the protection of war refugees to the mining of natural resources, domestic news has revealed. Click here

Court ruling ends microcredit pioneer's career. By Ben Doherty. The Age. Thursday April 7 2011. The man who pioneered microcredit in Third World countries with tiny loans to poor Bangladeshi villagers says the industry has lost its way. Click here

Life behind parliament’s stonewalls, By Kyaw Kyaw. Monday 4 April 2011. Democratic Voice of Burma. It has been disparagingly referred to as the “15-minute parliament”, but over the past few weeks the upper and lower houses in Naypyidaw (known as the Amyotha and Pyithu Hluttaw respectively) have been anything but. Click here

Large quake hits Burma. By South-East Asia correspondent Zoe Daniel and wires. ABC News. Friday 25 March 2011. A 6.8-magnitude earthquake has hit the Thai-Burma border region, killing at least one person and shaking buildings as far away as Bangkok. Click here

Can aid bring the west's influence to bear on Burma? The Guardian. By Joseph Allchin. Wednesday 16 March 2011. The UK is to become Burma's biggest foreign aid donor, but the country's oppressive regime and its opaque political arena mean bringing change won't be easy. "We do not have a normal aid relationship here," says Paul Whittingham, head of the Burma section of the Department for International Development (DfID). And it isn't, not only does Burma receive some of the lowest levels of development assistance in the world but aid giving is also extremely politicised. Click here

Land mine use in Burma. Thursday, 10 March 2011. Mizzima News. Q&A with Yeshua Moser-Puangsuwan from the International Campaign to Ban Landmines. The use of anti-personnel land mines by both the Burmese army and non-state armed groups causes hundreds of casualties each year and contaminates large areas of land used by civilians. The International Committee of the Red Cross has estimated that the total number of amputees living in Burma is 12,000 people, of whom the majority are probably mine victims. Click here

Chin state abuses are the tip of the iceberg. from Democratic Voice of Burma. By Richard Sollom. 25 February 2011. Recently a new Burmese legislature convened for the first time in 22 years, but the parliament resembles last year’s electoral exercise – an elaborate show that is a democracy only in name. Click here

Burma opens junta-dominated parliament. The Age, January 31, 2011. AFP. Burma's new junta-dominated parliament has opened as lawmakers assembled in secrecy for their first legislative session since the late 1980s following a widely panned election. Click here

Army abuse in Chin state ‘extraordinary’. from Democratic Voice of Burma. By Francis Wade. 19 January 2011. State-sanctioned abuses in Chin state are widespread and in many cases may qualify as crimes against humanity, the authors of a comprehensive survey-based report claim. Click here

Suu Kyi Factor Helps AIDS Shelters. By Sai Zom Hseng. The Irrawaddy. Thursday January 13, 2011. The international community has become much more interested in the plight of Burma's estimated 240,000 HIV/ AIDS sufferers since Aung San Suu Kyi was released from house arrest on Nov. 13, according to Phyu Phyu Thin, a well-known HIV/AIDS activist and a youth leader with Suu Kyi's National League for Democracy (NLD). Click here

Simon Reeve enters Burma covertly. This segment onYouTube from Episode 5 of BBC series Tropic of Cancer shows Simon Reeve crossing the border between Mizoram in India and Chin State in Burma. Click here

Last Updated ( Apr 10, 2012 at 10:12 AM )