Officer beats villagers for accidental splashing
Tue 21 Apr 2009, Kon Hadae, IMNA
A Burmese Army officer beat two villagers from Ye Township after accusing them of disrespecting his wife when they accidentally splashed her with water.
The officer, from Light Infantry Battalion No. 299 based near Ko Mile village, was standing by a main road talking with his wife when the two locals passed on a motorbike. The road was wet from a recent rain shower and, as the villagers drove by, the bike went through a puddle and splashed water on the officer’s wife.
He immediately became angry on her behalf and after ordering the villagers to stop, he subjected one of them to a beating. The other man ran away but the officer then seized a gas bottle from a store nearby and threatened to burn the man’s house down if he did not come back and apologize. However, when the villager returned and offered an apology the officer was not satisfied and beat him regardless.
Another Ko Mile resident commented, “The military have the power to do whatever they want and we can’t say anything about it.”
Governments seek new Burma strategy
By Tim Johnston in Bangkok
Published: April 21 2009 06:59 | Last updated: April 21 2009 06:59
Diplomats and analysts are championing a new approach to Burma that would involve “smart sanctions” and a measure of engagement in the wake of the Obama administration’s acknowledgment of the failure of existing policy towards the country’s military regime.
The debate follows remarks by Hillary Clinton, US secretary of state, that signalled a top-to-bottom review of US sanctions policy towards the country’s brutal rulers.
“Clearly, the path we have taken in imposing sanctions hasn’t influenced the Burmese junta,” Mrs Clinton said on a visit to Asia in February. “Reaching out and trying to engage them hasn’t worked either.”
The Department of State said the review was continuing. “We’ve got to look for other ways to try to bring some influence to bear on the regime,” said a spokesman. “The secretary was not happy with the situation as it is.”
For the last 12 years the US has pursued a policy of increasingly tight sanctions, blocking imports, investment and all other financial contacts and culminating in sanctions based on individual members of the junta.
That policy was primarily impelled by legislation, but the administration has considerable discretion over which sanctions to impose.
Burma’s Asian neighbours tried the opposite approach, attempting to bend the junta to its will with a charm offensive known as ‘constructive engagement’ epitomised by the invitation to join the Association of South East Asian Nations in 1999. Continue reading “Diplomats and analysts are championing a new approach to Burma that would involve “smart sanctions” and a measure of engagement in the wake of the Obama administration’s acknowledgment of the failure of existing policy towards the country’s military regime”
SO WE NEED YOUR VOICE!!!!!!!! USE YOUR LIBRTY TO PROMOTE OURS!!!
Bangkok – A global petition campaign to free Myanmar’s political prisoners has secured 253,524 signatures to date, pro-democracy groups announced Tuesday. The signature campaign, launched on March 13 marking Myanmar’s Human Rights Day, aims to collect 888,888 signatures before May 24, 2009, the date that opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi should be released from house arrest, according to the country’s laws.
Suu Kyi, a Nobel Peace Prize laureate, is the most prominent of Myanmar’s estimated 2,500 political prisoners. She has been under house arrest since May 2003, on charges of threatening national security.
According to Myanmar’s criminal laws, the charge carries a maximum of five years imprisonment, leading some to hope authorities will be forced to free her before the sixth anniversary of her detention is reached on May 24.
Suu Kyi, who heads the National League for Democracy (NLD) opposition party, has spent 13 of the past 19 years under house arrest. continue
EU official sees no chance of formal Myanmar aid talks
21 April 2009, 12:59 CET
(MANILA) – The European Union sees no chance of formal talks with Myanmar on aid for development projects until the junta brings about democratic reforms, the head of the bloc’s aid office said Tuesday.
Koos Richelle said European countries had been trying to engage the regime but it has been intent to “seclude itself from the rest of the world.”
“It is not us punishing them, it’s them not opening up for what we consider to be normal contact,” he said at the close of a two-day conference in Manila between Asian and European aid officials.
Myanmar was devastated by a cyclone one year ago which left 138,000 people dead or missing.
Despite a huge international relief effort, the secretive junta stalled on issuing visas to foreign aid workers and prevented some humanitarian supplies from entering the country, drawing worldwide condemnation.
“We are not a money machine throwing envelopes over the fence,” Richelle — the director general of the European Comission’s EuropeAid Coooperation Office — told reporters.
“We want to contribute to the quality of life in a country, and if we have the impression that it is not possible, then there is no possibility for us to cooperate.” Continue reading “The European Union sees no chance of formal talks with Myanmar on aid for development projects until the junta brings about democratic reforms, the head of the bloc’s aid office said Tuesday.”
by Daniel Pedersen
Tuesday, 21 April 2009 17:32
Mae Sot (Mizzima) – Casualties mounted on both sides this afternoon as an onslaught was launched to capture a Karen National Liberation Army encampment close to the Thai border by the Burmese Army and an allied militia which stretched into the ninth day.
A KNLA commander, speaking from the besieged Wah Lay Kee camp, said a KNLA soldier had been killed and three injured.
But casualties have been greater for the Burmese Army and its ally, the Democratic Karen Buddhist Army.
The commander said his soldiers had counted seven dead and 33 wounded since the latest hostilities began on April 12, a Sunday afternoon.
Land mines have caused the greatest casualties along with booby traps laid around the camp.
The combined Burma Army and DKBA force of about 250 soldiers used scores of mortars, both 69mm and 81mm.
On Tuesday afternoon at about 3 pm a commander at the camp said the latest bombardment had occurred about 25 minutes earlier and the situation “is not good. They are attacking us every day”.
The KNLA soldiers have long been expecting this onslaught and have made preparations.
The whole area is teeming with booby traps and land mines and Karen National Union vice president David Thackrabaw said the KNLA had been making its own Claymore directional mines, primarily a defensive weapon but deadly up to a range of 250 metres.
Wah Lay Kee, home to the KNLA’s Sixth Brigade 201st division, although a literal stone’s throw from the Thai border is pretty much isolated, with Thai soldiers maintaining a heavy presence along potential access routes.
Good bless you all
On April 16, an unknown attacker reportedly entered the garden of Thein Nyunt, 65, an NLD spokesperson and elected Member of Parliament in the 1990 elections. His family members said that he was beaten with a baton and suffered injuries to his forehead, back and hands.
Nyan Win, head spokesperson for the NLD, told The Irrawaddy on Tuesday that he doubts the assault against a veteran member of the party was a random attack.
“We do not know who is behind this incident. But, when NLD leaders and members are attacked like this, it forces us to consider that there may be a systematic campaign to suppress us,” said Nyan Win. He added that attacks against opposition members were not the solution to the political conflict in Burma.
Thein Nyunt is not the first NLD leader to be physically attacked and hospitalized. Since 2003, at least 11 physical assaults against NLD members or political activists linked to the opposition have been reported, including an attack against Nobel Peace Prize winner Aung San Suu Kyi.
In May 2003, Suu Kyi’s convoy was attacked in Depayin in Sagaing Division by a group of thugs, thought to be members of the Union Solidarity and Development Association (USDA) and its militia, the Swan Ah-shin.
In 2006, Thet Naing Oo, an activist who actively participated in the national uprising in 1988, died after he was beaten by riot police.
In June 2007, Than Lwin, an elected member of parliament, was punched in the face by an unknown assailant wearing steel “knuckle-dusters.” His nose was broken and he later lost one of his eyes.
In March 2008, prominent social activist, Myint Aye, who is a leading member of the Human Rights Defenders and Promoters group, was beaten up and required five stitches.
And last April, Tin Yu, a member of the NLD in Hlaing Tharyar Township, was attacked by unknown assailants carrying batons as he walked home from a bus stop. He was admitted to hospital where he required 50 stitches in his face.
မင္းႏိုင္သူ / ၂၁ ဧၿပီ ၂၀၀၉
လာမည့္ (၂၈-၂၉) ရက္တုိ႔တြင္ က်င္းပမည့္ အန္အယ္လ္ဒီ အထူးအစည္းအေ၀းတြင္ စာတမ္းသုံးေစာင္ တင္သြင္းသြားမည္ ျဖစ္ကာ အဆုိပါ စာတမ္းသုံးေစာင္ႏွင့္ အစည္းအေ၀းက်င္းပမည့္ အေၾကာင္းမ်ားကုိ အန္အယ္လ္ဒီပါတီက ျပည္သူ႔လႊတ္ေတာ္ ကိုယ္စားျပဳေကာ္မတီ (စီအာပီပီ) အပါအ၀င္ တုိင္းရင္းသားပါတီ ကုိယ္စားလွယ္မ်ားႏွင့္ အႀကိဳညႇိႏႈိင္း