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Old 22-10-2007, 10:44 PM   #1276 (permalink)
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Generals Sending Mixed Messages in the Media
By Wai Moe
October 22, 2007

The Burmese junta has taken a typically hard-line stance in the state-run media following US president George W Bush putting additional sanctions on Burma, specifically targeting the junta’s officials and their cronies.


The Myanmar Times published photos of Snr-Gen Than Shwe, Gambari and Suu Kyi on the front page. It was the first time the media in Burma had run with a photo of Suu Kyi alongside that of Than Shwe.



Dissident Women Speak About Why They Fled Rangoon
By Saw Yan Naing
October 22, 2007

Five women who recently arrived at the Thai border town of Mae Sot have spoken to The Irrawaddy about why they had to flee Burma in fear of their lives.


“People in Burma think that international pressure is important,” she said. “They want the international community to put more pressure on Burma.” She said that they would sacrifice what they needed to sacrifice to achieve change in Burma.

She confirmed that members of the pro-government Union Solidarity and Development Association and the paramilitary thugs known as “Swan Arr Shin” were the main groups responsible for gathering information for the authorities.



Ethnic Ceasefire Group Welcomes UN as Mediator
By Violet Cho
October 22, 2007

Four ethnic ceasefire groups, including the United State Wa Army, have issued a statement criticizing the Burmese military government’s crackdown on peaceful protesters, but welcoming the United Nations’ role as mediator in helping to find a solution to the conflict in Burma.

However, they condemned the international community’s response in imposing sanctions on Burma and said they strongly disagreed with the proposed boycott of the Olympic Games due to be held in China in August 2008.

According to the very first statement of the Peace and Democratic Front, a combination of ethnic ceasefire groups based on the Burma-China border, the Burmese military government should reconsider the people’s demands as expressed during the recent demonstrations on the streets of Burma’s cities.

The Peace and Development Front confirmed that this was a joint statement by the United Wa State Army, the Myanmar National Democracy Alliance, the National Democratic Army (Kachin State) and the National Democracy Alliance Army.


However, according to an ethnic and military analyst, the statement was laced with a hidden political agenda.

Htay Aung, a Burmese researcher for the exiled Network for Democracy and Development, called the statement “unacceptable” and said that the ethnic ceasefire groups had been quiet when the regime began its deadly crackdown on monks and civilians.


The condemnation of the Olympic boycott clearly shows that the ethnic ceasefire groups operating along the Burma -China border hope to make a good impression and improve relations with the Chinese government, according to Htay Aung.



Targets of New US Sanctions Feeling the Heat [Editorial]
By The Irrawaddy
October 22, 2007

US President George Bush has imposed additional sanctions on Burma, requiring the US Treasury Department to freeze the assets held in the US by 11 more high-ranking members of the military regime.

The new sanctions target the mayor of Rangoon and the ministers of electric power, health, education, industry, labor, science and technology, commerce, national planning and economic development, finance and revenue, telecommunications and construction.

The sanctions also target 12 businessmen and business entities close to Snr-Gen Than Shwe and other hard-line military leaders.

One of the wealthiest businessmen one the list is Tay Za, the CEO of Htoo Trading Company and the owner of Air Bagan, which recently launched flights to Singapore.

Two other prominent businessmen, Htay Myint and Khin Shwe, have had friendly relationships with the regime for years.



Implications of US Myanmar sanctions unclear: Singapore
26 minutes ago

SINGAPORE (AFP) - The implications of US sanctions against three companies in Singapore are not clear, Singapore's Ministry of Foreign Affairs said late Monday.

"MFA has just been formally informed by the US embassy in Singapore of the stated sanctions today, which affect three companies in Singapore that are linked to a Myanmar national, Tay Za," it said in a statement.

"The implications of these US sanctions are still not entirely clear. We are studying them and will also seek further clarification from the US if necessary."

"Keeping quiet while monks and other peaceful protesters are murdered and jailed is not evidence of constructive engagement." - Arvind Ganesan, Human Rights Watch.

"I think...I think it's in my basement. Let me go upstairs and check" - M.C. Escher

Last edited by Mid : 22-10-2007 at 11:58 PM.
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