Day: August 17, 2009
Burmese troops kill DKBA deserter
Aug 17, 2009 (DVB)–A deserter from a pro-junta militia wanted for the killing of two government soldiers was last week shot dead by Burmese troops and members of his former group.
A former lieutenant in the Democratic Karen Buddhist Army (DKBA), Saw Pha-Htaw (also-known-as Ashaygyi) had been on the run since his desertion on 10 August following an argument with a senior official, Aung Chit.
Following the argument, he opened fire on two soldiers from the government’s Military Operation Command 12, and two local policemen, killing all four.
According to DKBA official, three days later DKBA troops stopped a Rangoon-bound bus in eastern Burma that he was riding on and a gun battle broke out.
“After four or five shots were fired into the truck, Ashaygyi, apparently worried that passengers might get caught in the crossfire, came out of the bus carrying a pistol and two grenades,” said the official. “He was shot dead on the spot.” Continue reading “Burmese troops kill DKBA deserter”
US Senator: Burma Denies Nuclear Plans
U.S. Senator Jim Webb, who recently held talks with Burma’s military leaders, says the government denies reports that it is trying to acquire nuclear technology. The senator also says Burma’s opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi has indicated a willingness to see some sanctions on Burma lifted.
Senator Jim Webb says he did not directly raise the issue of whether Burma has a covert nuclear program during talks with the country’s leader, General Than Shwe. Webb met with the reclusive leader on Saturday, the first high-ranking U.S. official to do so.
However, he said Monday that the Burmese government denied having a nuclear program.
“But it was communicated to me earlier on that there was no truth to that, from a very high level in their government,” Webb said. Continue reading “US Senator: Burma Denies Nuclear Plans”
ကႏၱာရ၀တီတိုင္း(မ္)/ ၾသဂုတ္ ၁၇၊ ၂၀၀၉ 17.08.by thawthikho
ျမန္မာစစ္အစိုးရအား လက္နက္ကိုင္ေသာ နည္းလမ္းျဖင့္သာ ဆက္လက္ခုခံေတာ္လွန္ တိုက္ခိုက္ သြားရန္အတြက္ ယေန႔က်ေရာက္ သည့္ ကရင္နီျပည္ တပ္မေတာ္ေန႔တြင္ အင္အား (၁၀၀) ၀န္းက်င္ရိွသည့္ တပ္သားသစ္အပတ္စဥ္တခုကို ထပ္မံျဖည့္ဆည္းလိုက္ ပါသည္။
ယခုလက္ရွိ ျမန္မာစစ္အစိုးရကို အင္အား (၈၀၀) ခန္႔ျဖင့္ ေတာ္လွန္တိုက္ခိုက္ေနရာမွ ယေန႔ ၾသဂုတ္လ (၁၇) ရက္တြင္ က်ေရာက္ သည့္ (၆၁) ေျမာက္ ကရင္နီျပည္တပ္မေတာ္ ေန႔ထူးေန႔ျမတ္တြင္ အင္အား (၈၀) ေက်ာ္ ရွိသည့္ သင္တန္းသားမ်ားက သစၥၥာေရ ေသာက္ခဲ့ၾကၿပီး ကရင္နီျပည္ Continue reading “ကႏၱာရ၀တီတိုင္း(မ္)/ ၾသဂုတ္ ၁၇၊ ၂၀၀၉ 17.08.by thawthikho”
WEBB’S IRONIC VISIT: ANTI-SANCTIONS POLITICIAN SENATOR WEBB REAPS BENEFITS FROM THE USA’S HARD LINE ON BURMA
Debbie Stothard: WEBB’S IRONIC VISIT
WEBB’S IRONIC VISIT: ANTI-SANCTIONS POLITICIAN SENATOR WEBB REAPS BENEFITS FROM THE USA’S HARD LINE ON BURMA.
Senator Webb’s visit to Burma has been considered “successful” because he was able to tick 3 items off his checklist:
(check!) “rescue” John Yettaw from 7 years’ jail with hard labor
(check!) meet Senior General Than Shwe
(check!) meet Daw Aung San Suu Kyi
In the eyes of international stakeholders who have gotten accustomed to the Burmese junta’s intransigence, the visit was a coup. This has been the biggest stride forward since former UN Special Envoy Razali Ismail secured Daw Aung San Suu Kyi’s release in 2002 and UN Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon was able to persuade the generals to accept lucrative aid in 2007.
How ironic. Senator Webb’s “success” stems from the leverage enjoyed by the USA’s significant (and effective) sanctions – a ban on imports from Burma and a ban on financial services –that were imposed in 2003 on top of the 1997 ban on new investment.
The USA’s previous willingness to “put their money where their mouth is” has gained the respect of the Burmese regime. The State Peace and Development Council (SPDC), led by Senior General Than Shwe, has invested millions of dollars over the past decade to woo the USA into greater engagement, compared to its cavalier treatment of ASEAN.
General Than Shwe respects power by the extent to which is exercised. He recognizes that the US has traditionally backed its statements with action. Remember ASEAN’s great achievement of persuading the SPDC to open up to Cyclone Nargis aid? Well, it wouldn’t have been possible without the USS Essex-led carrier group and other foreign navies on standby off the Burmese coast. Gen. Than Shwe was given the impression he had to make the choice of cooperating with ASEAN or deal with the US navy. Continue reading “WEBB’S IRONIC VISIT: ANTI-SANCTIONS POLITICIAN SENATOR WEBB REAPS BENEFITS FROM THE USA’S HARD LINE ON BURMA”
The American senator, Jim Webb may have started something significant, but at this stage everything to do with his visit is still shrouded in mystery.
US Senator’s mercy mission to Burma may start a new process
by Larry Jagan
Monday, 17 August 2009 18:25
Bangkok (Mizzima) – The American senator, Jim Webb may have started something significant, but at this stage everything to do with his visit is still shrouded in mystery. Even at his two press conferences in Bangkok on consecutive days, the usually garrulous and talkative politician was overtly coy, dodging questions and being continually non-committal. “He appears frightened and is hiding something,” said a senior western diplomat who closely follows Burmese affairs. “He knows more than he’s telling, something is surely afoot.”
This was certainly no ordinary or even private visit, despite senior state department officials insisting the senator visited Burma in a personal capacity. The US Secretary of State, Hilary Clinton, rang him last night to talk about the trip, Webb let slip during his encounter with the press on Monday. This only adds to the increasing suspicion that something significant may be happening beneath the public gaze. After all that is how serious diplomacy takes place.
Senator Webb, it must be remembered, is a rising political star in Washington, close to the Clintons and Barack Obama, according to sources on the Hill. He is also tipped to become the next secretary of defense, when the Bush-appointee Bill Gates stands down in around two years’ time. So the US could not have had a better envoy – even if unofficially — than this conservative Democrat from Virginia.
One of the key messages Webb passed onto Than Shwe was that Aung San Suu Kyi should be released before the 2010 election, and allowed a political role. “We will just have to wait and see how the Myanmar government responds,” he told Mizzima. “I am hopeful that they will give my recommendation [that she be freed] serious consideration,” he added. Continue reading “The American senator, Jim Webb may have started something significant, but at this stage everything to do with his visit is still shrouded in mystery.”
Bangkok press conference on Monday, Webb was coy, telling the media that “I don’t want to misrepresent her views, but my clear impression is that she is not opposed to the lifting of some sanctions.”
Webb Hints Suu Kyi May Favor Engagement
BANGKOK—The fallout from US Senator Jim Webb’s controversial engagement with the Burmese junta continues. Today, Webb fuelled speculation that Aung San Suu Kyi favors the removal of some of the international sanctions applied by the US and EU.
Discussing the issue at a Bangkok press conference on Monday, Webb was coy, telling the media that “I don’t want to misrepresent her views, but my clear impression is that she is not opposed to the lifting of some sanctions.” Continue reading “Bangkok press conference on Monday, Webb was coy, telling the media that “I don’t want to misrepresent her views, but my clear impression is that she is not opposed to the lifting of some sanctions.””
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