Burma - The Irrawaddy
In Burma President, Some See Change From Reformist to Nationalist

President Thein Sein pushes “protection of race and religion,” evincing a nationalistic impulse that would appear at odds with the reformist mantle he has cultivated.

Arakan Officials Ask Rohingya to Leave Census Race Question Blank

The Arakan State government asks Muslim leaders in Sittwe to urge their fellow followers of Islam not to identify their “race” in Burma’s upcoming census.

Anti-Genocide Group Sounds Warning About Burma

A former US congressman who visited camps housing displaced Rohingya Muslims in western Burma warns that “the building blocks of genocide are there.”

Burma’s Govt Drafting New Film Law

The government hopes to submit a draft Motion Picture Law to Parliament this year, with Burma’s erstwhile film censors saying it “won’t have serious limitations.”

In Mandalay Writers Meeting, Suu Kyi Addresses China Concerns

Aung San Suu Kyi says the government must protect Burma’s citizens from threats posed by illegal immigration, while also urging “harmonious” coexistence among all nationalities.

Army Lost 2 Helicopters, Suffered Heavy Personnel Losses in Past Kachin Offensive: Report

Two Burma Army helicopters were shot down, while thousands of soldiers might have died during fighting with Kachin rebels in 2011-2013, a defense magazine claims.

Mon State Likely to Pass Mother-Tongue Teaching Bill

A proposal to the state’s legislature calls for Mon-language teaching to be allowed in government schools, which currently only teach in Burmese.

NLD Patron Visits Dr. Cynthia’s Clinic on Thai Border

The National League for Democracy patron pays a visit to the renowned Mae Tao Clinic for Burmese refugees and migrants in Mae Sot, Thailand.

Report Says Tatmadaw’s Targeting of Civilians ‘Ongoing,’ Urges Reforms

Burma’s military continues to target civilians in its operations against rebel armed groups, according to a report by a US-based human rights institute.

Suu Kyi Calls on Public to Join Demonstrations for Constitutional Reform

People should “be brave and rid themselves of fear in order to create the country they want,” opposition leader says, while appealing for constitutional reform.

Burma’s Marine Eden Braces for Tourism

The Mergui archipelago remains a Lost World of some 800 mostly untouched islands, but developers are readying to bring large-scale tourism.

Thousands to March for Termination of Burma’s Myitsone Dam

Protesters fear that the stalled hydropower project on the Irrawaddy River in Kachin State will be restarted, amid pressure from the development’s Chinese backers.

Question of ‘Federal Army’ Looms Over Burma’s Peace Process

Ethnic armed groups want to join a future Burma Army while maintaining control over their areas, a demand that is deemed unrealistic by some experts.

Burma Begins Passport Scheme for Migrant Workers in Thailand

Migrant rights activists say the new process only adds complexity, and rules out many workers who do not possess the correct Burmese documentation.

One Dead in Kachin IDP Camp Fire

An accidental fire at one of the camps for internally displaced persons in Kachin State claims the life of a 13-year-old girl.

Burma Rebels, Villagers Destroy Poppy Crops

Rebel soldiers in eastern Burma are battling not with government forces, but against opium crops that are destroying communities as they succumb to drug addiction.

Burma Govt Says ‘Public Service,’ Journalists See Propaganda

Rangoon-based journalists say they cannot accept a public service media bill submitted to Parliament by the government this week, criticizing the proposal as self-serving.

Govt, Army and Ethnic Groups Closing Differences, Forging New Approach

“We were told the Tatmadaw is totally committed to peace,” says ethnic representative, as government, army and ethnic groups inch closer to forging joint ceasefire.

Upper House Approves Ban on Politics for Non-Citizens

Burma’s Upper House removed the right of temporary citizenship card holders to form parties, a decision that could further curtail the rights of Rohingya Muslims.

Official Confirms Burma By-Elections Due This Year

A second by-election since President Thein Sein took power will take place this year for some 30 vacant seats in the Union and state-level parliaments.