Thursday, November 29, 2007

Revolution Song: To The Flying Peacocks

Written and sung by Myo Chit Myanmar

Blogger Myo Chit Myanmar has created a song echoing the sentiments of patriotic Burmese worldwide. Flying Peacocks has attempted to translate a paragraph with the permission of the songwriter.

"Our heads maybe bleeding but we will not bow down
Braving wounds, standing up (to our beliefs), our spirits will never die
The new generation of our people are forging ahead;
Rebelling against Power, fighting against Resistance, the peacocks will fly"

To listen to the song, please click here.

For the original lyrics in Burmese, please click here.

Myanmar Gets Over $750 Mil in Direct Investment

Source: Japan Today

Military-ruled Myanmar attracted foreign direct investment worth more than $750 million during fiscal year that ended March 31, 2007, according to official figures made available Wednesday. During the period, China, South Korea, Russia, Singapore and Britain invested in projects worth $752.7 million, mainly in the oil and gas sector, figures from the Central Statistical Organization said.

Four of the five investing countries went in for the oil and gas sector, accounting for more than 62 percent of investment in the year. Britain, which regularly criticizes Myanmar's junta for human rights abuses, invested $240.68 million in the oil and gas sector, followed by Singapore with $160.8 million in the same sector. South Korea and Russia invested in oil and gas at $37 million and $33 million, respectively.

Crackdown on Monastery Housing HIV Patients

Source: Ko Htike, The Irrawaddy

Monks of the Maggin Monastery in Yangon have been ordered to vacate the premises. The officials who relayed the message to the monks declined to comment, saying that they were following orders.

The monastery has been under constant watch by authorities for their involvement in the Saffron Revolution since September, and monks of the monastery, including the Abbott, remain in detention.

For the full report, please follow these links:

Myanmar Prime Minister, Un Envoy to Visit Cambodia

Source: Daily News

The Prime Minister of Myanmar and the U.N.’s special envoy to the military-ruled country will take turns visiting Cambodia this week to discuss Myanmar’s political crisis, officials said Wednesday.

Cambodian Government spokesman Khieu Kanharith declined to comment on whether the timing of the two visits was coincidental, but said that Cambodia is not playing an intermediary role in the Myanmar crisis.

After Myanmar’s September crackdown on pro-democracy demonstrators, Cambodia joined countries around the world in calling for the junta to halt its violence and embrace democracy.

Prime Minister Hun Sen also called for the 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations to play a more active role in resolving the crisis.

Ibrahim Gambari, the U.N. Secretary General’s envoy, will arrive Thursday to meet with Cambodian officials, said Hua Jiang, a U.N. diplomat traveling with the envoy. The trip is Gambari’s latest tour through ASEAN nations to coax Myanmar’s neighbors to promote reconciliation between the junta and a suppressed pro-democracy movement.

Japan, Vietnam Agree to Work on North Korea, Myanmar

Source: Daily News

The leaders of Japan and Vietnam agreed Tuesday to step up efforts to ease regional concerns over North Korea’s nuclear drive and Myanmar’s crackdown on dissent.

The agreement came during talks between Japanese Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda and Vietnam’s President Nguyen Minh Triet, who is on the first state visit from the communist country to Tokyo.

“We confirmed that we would promote our cooperation in handling the North Korea and Myanmar issues under regional and global frameworks such as the United Nations,” Fukuda said after meeting with Triet.

For the full report, please follow this link:

Monks Refuse Funeral Blessing for Militia Leader

Source: Democratic Voice of Burma

Local monks have refused to perform a funeral blessing for a notorious senior Swan Arr Shin member from Phaw Kan ward in Insein township who died recently.

Maung Maung, a senior leader of the pro-government militia Swan Arr Shin, was admitted to Insein hospital on 20 November after falling ill and diagnosed with malaria which had affected his brain.

For the full report, please follow this link:

UN Investigator Says Number of Political Prisoners in Myanmar Larger than Government Says

Source: Associated Press via International Herald Tribune

A U.N. human rights investigator who recently returned from Myanmar said he believes there are more political prisoners detained in the country than the government says, although he would not estimate how many.

Paulo Sergio Pinheiro visited Myanmar for five days this month to look into allegations of abuse by the ruling military junta and to determine how many people were killed or detained in the September crackdown on a series of pro-democracy protests led by Buddhist monks.

"I don't think this number corresponds to reality," Pinheiro told an audience at Brown University's Watson Institute for International Studies, where he is a visiting professor. "Ninety three is too low. I think it's a larger number of people continuing in detention."

For the full report, please follow this link:


Dalai Lama Condemns Myanmar Crackdown

Source: Associated Press

The Dalai Lama said Tuesday he supported the recent pro-democracy demonstrations in Myanmar and condemned the crackdown on the Buddhist monks who led them, saying it reminded him of China's oppression of Tibetans.

"When I saw pictures of people beating monks I was immediately reminded of inside Tibet, in our own case, where just a few days ago monks were beaten by Chinese forces," the Dalai Lama said.

"I am fully committed and I have full support and sympathy for the demonstrators," the Tibetan spiritual leader told reporters on the sidelines of the Elijah Interfaith Summit of world religious leaders in the northern Indian city of Amritsar.

For the full report, please follow this link:

UN chief will not discuss Burma with Thailand

Source: The Nation

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon will not discuss Burma when he makes his first visit to Thailand next month, Prime Minister Surayud Chulanont said Wednesday.

Surayud said the visit will concentrate on Thailand's engagement with various UN agencies rather than the Burma issue, which had already been exhaustively discussed in the UN General Assembly in New York, the Nation newspaper reported.

Ban Ki-moon will visit Thailand on December 9,10 and 11. Thailand will hold elections for a return to civilian rule on December 23.

For the full report, please follow this link:

Over 5,000 Sign Petition to Counter Myanmar Junta

Source: Japan Economic Newswire via Burmanet

A group of people from Myanmar submitted a petition with 5,205 signatures to the United Nations Center for Regional Development in Nagoya on Wednesday, asking the international body to persuade the military government to stop suppressing demonstrations and to free democracy icon Aung San Suu Kyi.

The signatures are addressed to U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki Moon and will be sent to the United Nations Information Center in Tokyo.

“Strong pressure from the international community is mandatory to change the stance of the military government which is vigorously clamping down on people,” said Aung Aye Win, 43, a leader of the League for Democracy in Burma in Japan.

The group members collected the signatures in streets in Nagoya and other places in Aichi Prefecture since late September.

For the full report, please follow this link:

Combat Training Held in Monastery Compound

Source: Democratic Voice of Burma

Authorities in San Dway township, Arakan state, have reportedly been conducting combat training inside a monastery compound, according to a San Dway resident, speaking on condition of anonymity.

About 60 people, including government employees, manual labourers and trishaw drivers, took part in the exercise, which began ten days ago and was due to run for 30 days in total.

Police and volunteer firefighters have conducted the training, which has focused on riot control, basic combat skills and use of shields and sticks as weapons.

The training has angered local residents because it is taking place inside a local monastery in Lay Myat Hnar pagoda compound, even though monks are still living at the monastery and the grounds are in public view.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Amnesty International Condemns Continued Arrests in Myanmar

Source: Amnesty International

Amnesty International condemns the new arrests of political activists inside Myanmar, despite the commitment by Prime Minister Thein Sein to the U.N. Special Representative Ibrahim Gambari in early November that no more arrests would be carried out.

Amnesty International is deeply disappointed by the fact that these arrests are still taking place despite the government's promises to the contrary. Just last week, the Myanmar government attended ASEAN's 40th Anniversary Summit, where it signed the organization's new Charter committing it to the "promotion and protection of human rights". To date, up to 700 people arrested during and since the September protests remain behind bars, while 1,150 political prisoners held prior to the protests have not been released.

For the full report, please follow this link:

BBC Burmese Service: Daw Aung San Suu Kyi wins Lifetime Achievement in Politics

Source: BBC Burmese Service via Burmanet

Daw Aung San Suu Kyi has been awarded a Special Award for Lifetime Achievement in Politics by the Political Studies Association, PSA of the United Kingdom.

The awards are given at the Institute of Directors in London. Zoya Phan of Burma Campaign UK recieved the prize on behalf of her since she is under house arrest.

The prize is to mark the achievements of politicians, academics and journalists during 2007.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Missing: The Father of Sangha Leader Ashin Gambira

Source: Democratic Voice of Burma

DVB reported on Tuesday that the father of Ashin Gambira, who was arrested early this month, has been detained after trying to see his son in prison on the 12th of November. Subsequently, the family has had no news of him.

The mother of the monk told DVB that on the 16th of this month, the family was able to pass some packages to U Gambira, his father U Min Lwin, and his elder brother Ko Aung Kyaw Kyaw, who were believed to be held in Insein Jail, but were not allowed to meet the detainees.

On the 22nd, the family received news that they were allowed visits with the detainees. However, when they finally arrived in Rangoon on the 23rd, from their hometown MeiTiLa, prison officials informed them that U Min Lwin was not being held in Insein Jail.

The detainees have since been allowed another visitation session with the family, but only one of the daughters who is based in Rangoon, was able to go. As of Monday, the family in MeiTiLa, has yet to receive any news from her.

Daw Yay, the mother of U Gambira, told DVB that she was worried for her 70 year old husband who has only recently recovered from a stroke. However, she added that she was proud of her son's role in the protests, as he was acting on behalf of the people, without any self-interest whatsoever.

For the original article in Burmese, please click here.

Burmese Gems Auction Takings Drop

Source: Irrawaddy News

More than 2,000 foreign merchants attended Burma's major gems auction, state-media reported on Tuesday, despite international calls to boycott the sale after the military junta's brutal crackdown on pro-democracy protesters in September.

The auction ended Monday after more than 3,500 lots of precious stones were sold, the New Light of Myanmar said, but did not report how much money was made.

The amount of money was not revealed because it was much lower than in previous years, said an official at the state-run Myanmar Gem Enterprise on condition of anonymity for fear of official reprisal.

For the full report, please click here.

Ceasefire Groups Pressured to Support National Convention

Source: The Irrawaddy

A senior official of the Burmese military government, Minister for Culture Maj-Gen Khin Aung Myint has arrived at the China-Burma border region in an attempt to lobby ethnic groups in Shan state—including ceasefire groups, such as the United Wa State Army, the Shan State Army-(North) and the Kokang armies—to support the government’s National Convention.

Khin Aung Myint has already visited Monglan, Panghsang and Kokang areas and is reported to have persuaded ceasefire groups in those areas to support the junta-sponsored “Seven-step Road Map” for democratic reform in Burma. However, no statement from those ethnic ceasefire groups has emerged so far.

For the full report, please click here.

Burmese Monks Urged to Boycott State-run Exams

Source: The Irrawaddy

Burmese monks are being urged in an anti-government pamphlet to boycott annual regime-organized examinations to show solidarity with protesting monks who were dispersed by the authorities and pro-junta thugs in the September demonstrations.

In their statement, the Alliance of All Burmese Buddhist Monks called on Buddhist monks to "respect the devotion of the monks who were arrested, disappeared and died in the movement for 'patam nikkujjana kamma'—meaning a boycott of alms from members of the military regime."

For the full report, please click here.

CBS 5 Journalist Ventures Inside Burma

Source: CBS 5

CBS 5 presents a video report on Burma.

Please click here to view the report.

Myanmar's Junta Forcibly De-robed Protesting Monks

Source: Press Trust of India

Myanmar's ruling military junta forcibly de-robed monks who it considered ring leaders of the recent pro-democracy demonstrations and tried to persuade the abbots of monasteries to get rid of dissidents, a media report says.
Quoting diplomats, monks and activists, Newsweek says in its upcoming issue that many monks had been placed under "monastery arrest" and forbidden to leave campuses except to collect alms.

A 26-year-old monk who was detained by the junta said for the first 15 days, no latrines or bathing facilities were provided.

Interrogations were basic: "We were mainly asked, 'Did you participate in the protests? Why? Who is the leading monk in these protests?'" the monk said.

Soldiers then brought in Sangha nayakas' Buddhist officials authorised to convert monks to laypeople. The nayakas refused to recite the appropriate scripture, so the soldiers simply forced the monks to don civilian dress and pronounced them laymen. "I took my vows a long time ago," says the defiant monk, still wearing his prison-issue flip-flops.

"I felt angry to be forced to change my clothes, but I was still a monk." Some "terrified" monks have fled to the countryside or to neighbouring countries including Thailand and China.

"The monasteries in my neighborhood seem empty," a monk who was jailed for 19 days is quoted as saying. "In my monastery, we used to have 100. Now we're down to about 31. I can feel the silence."

Note: FP has earlier reported on these issues.

U.N. Burma Fact-finder to Speak at Brown University

Source: Rhode Island News

Paulo SÉrgio Pinheiro, the U.N. special rapporteur for human rights, said he is hopeful that crisis in Burma (called Myanmar by the country’s ruling generals) will open the door to change, but he stressed that no change can happen without the involvement of all political parties.

The international visibility that the crackdown created, including widely disseminated images of troops opening fire on monks and students, “will be very difficult to forget,” said Pinheiro, the Cogut visiting professor at Brown University’s Watson Institute for International Studies.

“The revulsion by the world to what has happened in the country was enormous. We need to take advantage of this attention of the world towards Myanmar,” he said during an interview Friday at the Watson Institute.

Pinheiro will present his findings on Dec. 11 before the U.N. Human Rights Council in Geneva, Switzerland. He said the report will focus strictly on the current crisis, “the origins, the protests, the march, the repression, the consequences, and some recommendations.”

For the full report, please follow this link:

Burma's Home Minister Criticizes UN Envoy

Source: Narinjara News

Burmese Home Minister General Maung Oo strongly criticized UN envoy Ibrahim Gambari and his recent visit to Burma during a meeting that was held Saturday in the western Burmese border town of Maungdaw, said a government official who attended the meeting.

General Maung Oo told attendees at the meeting that when Gambari arrived in Thailand from Burma he held a press conference at which he blamed the Burmese government of negative pacts. "We do not accept international intervention for our internal problem. All our people need to stand up with us and did not need to take care of the international pressure for our affairs," the official added.

For the full report, please follow this link:

Campaign: Jan 4 - Free Burma from 45 Years of Military Oppression

Source: Nik Nayman

International Burmese Monks Organisation Inc, on 24th of November (Full Moon Day of TanSaungMone), released a statement calling Burmese in and outside Burma to act on their desire for a free Burma. In the statement, the organization urged Burmese worldwide to participate in the freedom movement, on the 4th of January, 2008, Independence Day of Burma, by carrying out the following:

1.       Wearing red to commemorate the September Saffron Revolution

2.       Resuming the Saffron Revolution

3.       Issuing statements to bring the attention of the world to the lack of freedom in Burma

For the original article in Burmese, please follow this link:

Monk Arrested in Police Raid

Source: Narinjana News

A police force in Sittwe raided a monastery and arrested a monk on 15 November, but no information is available regarding the whereabouts of the monk after his arrest.

A student from Rupa Ward said that a force of about 30 armed police raided Tayzar Rama Kaman Htan monastery on the outskirts of Sittwe at 4:30 pm on 15 November.

U Than Rama, aged 30, was wanted by the authority for his involvement in the recent monk-led demonstrations in Sittwe. During the arrest, police reportedly severely beat and kicked U Than Rama and took him away to an undisclosed location.

U Thu Min Ghala from Sittwe told Narinjara over the phone that police arrested U Than Rama during the raid, but that he did not know where authorities are detaining the monk.

In Sittwe, the security is still tight and government authorities are closely watching most of the monasteries. The authorities are also prohibiting monks from traveling around Arakan without official permission.

Sarkozy Urges Chinese President to Put Pressure on Burma

Source: The Irrawaddy

French President Nicolas Sarkozy raised the Burma issue in China during a meeting on Monday with his counterpart, President Hu Jintao.

His gesture was welcomed by Burmese observers as a positive change in French foreign policy on Burma.

Sarkozy said after the meeting that he had urged Hu to “engage vigorously” in finding a solution to the crisis in neighboring Burma, where the ruling junta violently suppressed pro-democracy protests in September.

“If there is a country that can change” things on the ground in Myanmar [Burma], “it’s obviously China,” said Sarkozy, according to The Associated Press.

For the full report, please follow this link:

State Sangha Council Urged to Investigate the Crackdown

Source: BBC Burmese Service via Burmanet

The Monks Alliance has urged Burma’s State Sangha Council to investigate about the situation of the monks who were killed or detained after September protests in Burma.

The Alliance, who are believed to be an underground religious body, demands the State Sangha Council to be a responsible body.

A spokesperson of the Alliance said the official Council is formed with elected monks and it should speak out the truth.

Burmese government said no monk was killed during the crackdown and faked monks were responsible for the unrest.



Tokyo: Police says Nagai Shot at Point-blank Range

Source: The Asahi Shimbun

Kenji Nagai, 50, the video journalist slain Sept. 27 during an anti-junta street protest in Myanmar (Burma), was shot in the back from a range of 1 meter, police here said Monday.

Myanmar's military junta claims Nagai's death in Yangon (Rangoon) was an accident. The Metropolitan Police Department had sought expert help to examine photos and video footage of the incident collected from various sources.

Indian Buddhist Monks Protest Against Myanmar Junta

Source: Reuters

Hundreds of Buddhist monks, nuns and students marched against Myanmar's military regime in eastern India on Monday, urging Buddhists around the world to unite against the junta, officials said on Monday.

At least 1,000 monks and nuns, draped in yellow robes, sang religious hymns and walked through the Buddhist holy town of Bodh Gaya in Bihar state, witnesses said.

"The military rulers are killing Buddhists, torturing our community and destroying Buddhist statues and religious emblems," Kyaw Than of the All Burma Students League said by phone from the town.

For the full report, please follow this link:


UN Envoy Calls for Halt to Arrests in Myanmar

Source: IANS

The UN special envoy to Myanmar Ibrahim Gambari expressed concern Monday over fresh reports of arrests of opposition leaders by the military junta, and sought the help of the Vietnamese communist government to persuade the military regime in Myanmar to engage in dialogue.

Last week, Myanmar's opposition National League for Democracy reported the arrest of at least one of its senior leaders. Other dissidents reported that a Buddhist monk and a labour-rights leader had been detained two months after the bloody crackdown on mass protests in September.

Talking to reporters here, Gambari said the arrests contradicted Myanmar's own reports of progress following the crackdown and the release of 2,600 detainees and the junta's overtures to Nobel peace laureate and opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi.

For the full report, please follow this link:

U.N. Envoy on Myanmar Wants to Return by Year End

Source: Reuters

U.N. special envoy Ibrahim Gambari said on Monday he wanted to return to Myanmar by the end of the year as part of efforts to secure the release of political prisoners and prod the country toward democracy.

"I sincerely hope I will be able to go before the end of the year because there are a number of issues left on the table that I want to follow up," Gambari told a news conference during a visit to Vietnam.

Gambari, who arrived in Hanoi on Friday and is also going to Cambodia and Laos, said that when he returned to Myanmar he wanted to meet opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi and newly appointed members of a committee drafting a new constitution.

For the full report, please follow this link:

Monday, November 26, 2007

Chin KW: Charter Has to Be More Than a Means to an End

Source: Today Online

We should look at the charter firstly as a facilitating instrument to integration and community building, which are works in progress. It will need to be adjusted as new requirements, expectations and possibilities arise. This is possible due to the provision for review after five years.

Secondly, the charter is the work of 10 nation states. Asean remains no more than the sum of its parts; supra-nationalism is eschewed. If the idealism of the Eminent Persons Group's recommendations is not fully reflected in the final document, it is because drafters were mindful of its acceptability to their respective governments.

Thirdly, if the charter raises expectations within member countries — with respect to democratic values, human rights, good governance, the rule of law, good neighbourly conduct, regional identity and community building — it would have served as a mirror to their respective domestic selves.

For the full article, please click here.

India Stops Arms Sales to Junta

Source: Hindustani Times

India has put all sale and transfer of arms to Myanmar on hold. The decision follows the suppression of pro-democracy protests in that country, South Block officials told HT.

India believes contact with the junta is in its strategic interest, but also wants to send out a message that it’s not quite business as usual any longer.

India gave Myanmar three British-made Islander aircraft last year. In Myanmar’s capital Naypyitaw in January, External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee said India was willing to expand military ties. “We have decided to give a favourable response (to the request for military equipment),” he said. That deal — for some Dorniers — is now frozen.

On Wednesday, PM Manmohan Singh told Myanmarese counterpart Thein Sein in Singapore the reform process must not exclude pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi.

UK Activists: Total Oil, Pull Out of Burma Now

Source: Indy Media

Actions were taking place at Total Oil garages around the country on Saturday 24 Nov, demanding that TOTAL Oil, the fourth largest oil company of the world, described by Aung San Suu Kyi as "the biggest supporter of the military regime in Burma," pull out of Burma.

In London alone, activists demonstrated at 11 garages.

Many of those walking past the demonstrations took leaflets and expressed support and passing motorists used their horns to show their approval.

For pictures, please follow this link:



Secretary-General Reports 'Grave Violations' of Children's Rights in Myanmar

Source: United Nations Press Release

Grave child rights violations, including recruitment into armed groups, continue in Myanmar, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon says in a new report, calling on the Government to take measures to address the problem which is common to both State and non-State actors.

"Although there has been progress in terms of dialogue with the Government of Myanmar and two non-State actors, the report notes that State and non-State actors continue to be implicated in grave child rights violations," Mr. Ban writes in a summary of his report to the Security Council.

For the full report, please follow this link:

Asean Members Have No Time to Waste

Source: Bangkok Post


New secretary-general says regional alliance must pull together to win international respect


Responding to criticism about how Asean responded to the crisis in Burma, its new secretary-general, former Thai Foreign Minister, Surin Pitsuwan, believes Asean governments will have to evolve in different ways to reach ''standards of governance, transparency, participation and decision making''.


''I still don't think we can directly impose these, but we need to evolve and that's why the principles of democracy, constitutionality and human rights are mentioned in the charter. Those are major general principles to be abided by, but each member must have its own way to achieve those goals. In general I think we need to have more efficient governance across the entire region and a more transparent, participatory process of decision making,'' Mr Surin said.


For the full report, please follow this link:

Activists Stage Small Protest in Rangoon

Source: BBC Burmese Service via Burmanet

Women activists in Burma have staged a small anti-government protest in the main city Rangoon - the first to take place there since the authorities crushed demonstrations in September.

Around thirty women gathered quietly at the Sule pagoda in central Rangoon Sunday, trying to avoid alerting the security forces. They marched to Botahtaung pagoda where they said prayers.

The military government has maintained a heavy security presence in the city since it used violence to end widespread protests in September.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Vietnam Supports National Reconciliation in Myanmar

Source: Vietnam Bridge

Deputy Prime Minister Pham Gia Khiem reaffirmed Vietnam’s support for national reconciliation process in Myanmar while receiving the United Nations Secretary General’s special envoy to Myanmar in Ha Noi on November 24.

Special Envoy Ibrahim Gambari has been in Vietnam since November 23 for a five-day visit as part of the UN’s plan to exchange views with ASEAN member countries in dealing with the Myanmar issue. He visited several ASEAN member countries earlier.

Deputy PM Khiem also stated that Vietnam has backed a dialogue between concerned parties in Myanmar to find a solution that is acceptable to all sides and wishes Myanmar to quickly achieve stabilisation so as it can concentrate on building the country.

For the full report, please click here.

Burma Rebel Group Denies Child Soldier Claims

Source: ABC News

An ethnic rebel group waging a decades-long uprising against Burma's military regime has denied a United Nations report saying it recruited child soldiers.

The Karen National Union (KNU), which has battled the government for 57 years in one of the world's longest-running insurgencies, said it had banned the presence of children under 18 in its ranks in 2003.

"Some parts of the [UN secretary-general's] current report, based on data collected in 2005, is no longer relevant," a KNU statement said.

"Accordingly, the KNU and KNLA (Karen National Liberation Army) are no longer involved in the use of child soldiers and violations of child rights."

For the full report, please click here.

Sarkozy to Raise Myanmar Issue with Chinese Leader

Source: The Gulf Times

French President Nicolas Sarkozy plans to discuss the situation in Myanmar when he meets Chinese President Hu Jintao this weekend, a French writer said yesterday after meeting with Sarkozy.

“He told us in no uncertain terms that Myanmar is an extremely important subject for him and that China has a role to play, and he intends to say that very clearly to his Chinese counterpart,” said Bernard-Henri Levy.

Levy was part of a group of writers and intellectuals who met with Sarkozy for more than an hour at the Elysee Palace yesterday to discuss Myanmar.

For the full report, please click here.

Than Shwe Finds Burma’s Fate in the Stars

Source: Irrawaddy News

Burmese junta leader Snr-Gen Than Shwe’s wife Kyaing Kyaing recently visited the celebrated Shit Myet Hna pagoda in her husband’s birthplace, Kyaukse, in central Burma, but she wasn’t just sightseeing or calling on friends and relatives.

The revered site is known as the “Eight Faces” pagoda because it faces eight points of the compass. Kyaing Kyaing is reported to have prayed symbolically there for support from all sides for her beleaguered husband and his despised regime.

Kyaing Kyaing and her husband, like many members of the ruling military, are deeply superstitious and rely on astrologers and other soothsayers to advise them.

For the full report, please click here.

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