Burma - The Irrawaddy
Charter Reform Vote Ripples Through Ethnic Leadership, Further Damaging Trust

In the aftermath of a constitutional reform battle, Burma’s ethnic armed groups predict the decision could drive a deeper wedge into the country’s peace efforts.

Suffrage for Squatters Poses Pre-Poll Challenge

Tens of thousands of squatters in Rangoon are vexing efforts to compile accurate eligible voter lists in the commercial capital ahead of Burma’s general election.

At Least 4 Killed in Hpakant Landslide

Some 20 people remain trapped on Friday after a landslide at the site of a jade mine near Hpakant killed four small-scale miners.

Burma Frees Bangladeshi Soldier After Ministry Protest

Burma frees a Bangladeshi paramilitary soldier whose capture this month had become a diplomatic sore point between the two countries.

Rejection of Charter Reform Bill ‘Deeply Troubling’: US Lawmakers

Two US lawmakers released a joint-statement on Thursday criticizing the military bloc within Burma’s Union Parliament for voting down proposed amendments to the country’s Constitution.

Parliament Votes Against Constitution Reform, Reserves Military Veto

Burma’s Union Parliament votes against major changes to the nation’s Constitution, keeping a military stronghold on the legislature firmly in place.

Military Presence Grows in Hpakant Amid Further Clashes

Burma Army troops increase their presence in Kachin State’s Hpakant Township amid renewed fighting in the jade-rich northern town.

Stateless ‘Sea Gypsies’ Face Severe Discrimination: Report

The Moken, one of Southeast Asia’s last remaining hunter-gatherer populations, face increasing threats to livelihoods and access to services, a leading rights group warns.

Military Chief Touts Air Force Procurement

Burma’s military has purchased 36 aircraft over the last four years and a recent report predicts defense spending will increase by nearly one-third by 2020.

Sovereignty at Stake if Suu Kyi Presidency Clause Is Nixed: Military MP

A military parliamentarian rules out an Aung San Suu Kyi presidency as lawmakers convene for a second day of deliberations on proposed constitutional amendments.

Govt to Opt for Middle Ground on Minimum Wage Demands

Discussions in Rangoon have failed to find common ground between workers’ representatives and employers, as the government prepares to implement an official minimum wage.

Taxi Hire Goes Mobile in Burma’s Car-Clogged Commercial Capital

A mobile phone application linking passengers with taxi drivers launches in Rangoon’s Hlaing Tharyar Township, billed as the latest initiative to help reduce traffic congestion.

Where Next in Latest Ceasefire Deadlock?

Cynicism, suspicion and deadlock have occasionally boiled over in the course of Myanmar’s arduous ceasefire talks, and so they have once again.

Bangladesh Rejects Burma ‘Proposal’ to Link Migrant Return to Freeing Guard

Bangladesh says it turned down a proposal from Burma to return a captured officer if Dhaka accepts some 600 trafficked migrants as Bangladeshi nationals.

Case Closed in Par Gyi Inquiry, Widow Vows to Appeal

A court in eastern Burma says a journalist killed in military custody died of a gunshot wound, delivering no remarks about who was to blame.

Parliamentary Debate Begins on Constitutional Reform Bill

Lawmakers take up a constitutional amendment bill, with deliberations scheduled to continue through Thursday, when a vote on changes to the contentious charter is expected.

Govt Summons Ethnic Peace Team, Defends Ceasefire Draft

Government peace negotiators invite ethnic leaders for terse talks, reiterating that they do not want to alter the current draft of a nationwide ceasefire agreement.

Ethnic Armed Group Accused of Abducting Local Party Leaders in Shan State

The Restoration Council of Shan State is accused of abducting two leaders a local branch of the Ta’ang National Party in Shan State.

Travel Association Calls for ‘ASEAN Plus Three’ Visa Exemption Deal

The Federation of ASEAN Travel Associations calls for visa-free travel for tourists among the 10-nation bloc, as well as from China, Japan and South Korea.

Ma Ba Tha to Trade Bullhorns for Broadcast Towers in Radio Deal

The Buddhist nationalist organization will trade in their bullhorns for broadcast towers after a Thai religious delegation pledged funding to build the group two radio stations.