Myanmar’s Least-Wanted Political Party

Myanmar’s Least-Wanted Political PartyThe Democracy and Human Rights Party, one of the smallest registered ones in Myanmar’s Nov. 8 general elections, is the only party willing to represent Myanmar’s persecuted Rohingya Muslims, although they aren’t allowed to use "Rohingya" in their party's name. Campaigning hasn’t gone as smoothly as for other parties. On Nov. 2, 300 people demonstrated…

Myanmar Dares the World’s Next Mass Atrocity 

Myanmar Dares the World’s Next Mass Atrocity Attacks on Rohingya Muslims could escalate ahead of November’s election. Myanmar’s Southeast Asian neighbors must act now. The world’s next mass atrocity may very well take place in Myanmar. Attacks against the ethnic minority Rohingya Muslims threaten to escalate in the runup to elections this November. With few voices standing up for the Rohingya inside…

ASEAN’s Disgraceful Inaction on Rohingya Refugees

ASEAN’s Disgraceful Inaction on Rohingya RefugeesThis year, the 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations is expected to make the ASEAN Economic Community a reality. It is envisioned as a single common market and production base that leads to the freer flow of goods, services, investment capital and skilled labor in the region, tying the member countries into a closely shared…

Reprieve Possible for Yangon’s Colonial Gems

Reprieve Possible for Yangon’s Colonial GemsFrozen in time by decades of shambolic economic mismanagement and an economy closed to international investment, the city of Yangon in Myanmar has a collection of some of the finest colonial buildings in Asia because of British rule, which lasted from 1824 to 1948. The subsequent Burmese Way to Socialism impoverished the country and immobilized…

Drug Resistant Malaria in West Myanmar

Drug Resistant Malaria in West MyanmarConcern is rising in western Myanmar over the possibility that malaria has mutated and is now immune to the antimalarial drug artemisinin, the frontline treatment against the disease. In an article carried in the medical journal Lanset’s Infectuous Disease reports, the bigger concern is that the drug-resistent form of the disease is now 25 km…

Myanmar’s Ethnic Stew Will Determine Its Future

Myanmar’s Ethnic Stew Will Determine Its FutureMyanmar’s presidential elections, set to take place towards the end of this year, will be crucial in determining the country’s ultimate direction. Yet, in many ways, what matters for the future of a unified country depends on what happens in its ethnic areas. Without a lasting peace in the fringes, political stability in the rest…

Myanmar’s Reform Roller Coaster

Myanmar’s Reform Roller CoasterThe trials, tribulations and recent relative triumph of the international health charity Médecins Sans Frontières in Myanmar are a salutary reminder that the Southeast Asian nation’s much heralded transition from military dictatorship to quasi-civilian administration has not been an entirely smooth ride. No one with any understanding of the country ever believed it would be.…

Myanmar’s Rohingya: The Roots of a Tragedy

Myanmar’s Rohingya:  The Roots of a TragedyEthnic violence in Myanmar’s Rakhine state continues to keep the region’s Rohingya Muslim populations in a state of fear and misery. Since clashes between the Rohingya and Rakhine Buddhist populations broke out in 2012, more than 100,000 Rohingya have fled the country, mostly by boat.  Though the future of the refugees is often one of…

New Hurdles for Myanmar’s Already Hobbled Press

New Hurdles for Myanmar’s Already Hobbled PressLast month, press freedom in Burma suffered a setback when the government detained reporters and editors from the Unity Journal, a local publication that ran a story about an alleged secret chemical weapons plant in central Burma. Instead of disproving the claims by allowing an inspection of the site, the government moved swiftly to arrest…

Chin Refugees’ Indian Dilemma

Chin Refugees’ Indian DilemmaExpatriate refugees from the poverty-stricken nation of Myanmar have begun filtering back, partly as their country of origin has democratized and more ominously because they are feeling the heat from host countries like Thailand, India, Bangladesh and Malaysia to leave. But so far, the Chin, an impoverished Christian minority that has been likened to the…
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