Features - The Irrawaddy

Since inter-community clashes broke out in the northern town almost two years ago, a group of religious leaders and youth has worked hard to rebuild good relations.

Photojournalists in Burma Weigh Duty Against Dangers By

Local photojournalists endeavoring to tell the story of Burma in transition balance embracing a newfound freedom with the personal risk this entails.


Burma’s army has forcibly recruited teenagers for decades. The practice is slowly ending, but many former child soldiers live with the scars of their experiences.


At 17, San Mon Aung left school and stumbled blindly into the world of publishing, a world still stifled by censorship and trying economic circumstances.


Built by hundreds of local artisans for the anniversary of Shwe Taung Sar Pagoda in Dawei, the gigantic bell’s donors include Snr-Gen Min Aung Hlaing.

Penniless and Prosecuted, a Veteran Soldiers On By

Eking out a meager pensioned existence, veteran Thein Hla Aung finds that the army he served for 24 years is intent on confiscating his home.

On a Mission: Destruction of Opium By

In the remote mountains of northern Shan State, a small ethnic armed group is taking on the drug trade.

Saving Yangon: Heritage on the Line By

The clock is ticking on efforts to ensure a beautiful, livable city.

Secret Historians Preserve Past in China Amid State Amnesia By

For China’s secret historians, who risk personal security to unravel a past concealed by the state, truth-telling is nothing less than an act of defiance.

Knowledge Vacuum and Conflict Plague Salween River By

Caught up in a web of international energy demand and supply, the fate of Burma’s free-flowing Salween River is still unclear.

Letter From the Jungle: Hours in Hiding After Letpadan Crackdown By

Senior reporter Lawi Weng recalls fleeing a violent scene and seeking shelter in the surrounding jungle as police violently dismantle student protests in Letpadan.

Families Mourn the Fallen Soldiers of Laukkai By

Amid surging support for the Burma Army in the wake of the Kokang conflict, who provides for the families of the fallen?

Mogok Miners Hold out Hope for Remaining Rubies By

Mogok, a rich valley in central Burma known for fine rubies and sapphires, is peppered with valuable stone, but some say deposits are thinning.

Letpadaung: Fields of Fire By

As officials trade blame, local opposition simmers around the Letpadaung copper mine near Monywa, where a villager was fatally shot by police late last year.

On Chin Day, Bittersweet Reflections on a Fading Culture By

An ethnic Chin dialect fades from use in Irrawaddy Division, taking knowledge about traditional songs and literature with it.

On the Bus with Linda McDowell By

Linda McDowell, the wife of the first Canadian ambassador to Burma, rides Rangoon’s notoriously chaotic buses to promote mass transit in a changing city.

Jade Trade Bedevils Burma’s Transparency Aspirations By

Burma’s lucrative jade trade remains hidden behind a wall of army checkpoints and official government secrecy.

Me and My Language By

With Mon National Day commemorated this week, ethnic Mon reporter Yen Snaing delves into Myanmar’s complicated linguistic heritage and the legacy that lingers on.

Brides for Bachelors By

Lured by false promises of employment, women and girls from Myanmar, including ethnic Ta’ang, continue to be trafficked to China.

On Chinese Border, Local Activists Lead Fight Against Drug Crime By

Faced with staggering addiction rates and inaction from the Burma Army, villagers in Shan State have begun their own battle against the drug trade.

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