In Myanmar’s West, a People Remain Oppressed

Nay Myo Linn 31 Jul 2022

Arakan State is the second poorest state in Myanmar, with very limited job opportunities. Arakanese people therefore often seek work abroad, or in large Myanmar cities like Yangon and Mandalay. Muslims, however, can’t do so. They are barred from leaving Arakan State, and those who try to leave are arrested and locked up by authorities if caught. 

Opening Closed Doors in Arakan State

27 Jul 2022

Last year, AA officials came and met with Muslim faith leaders, Buddhist monks and community elders, and called for peaceful coexistence between the two communities. It was followed by members of the two communities getting back in contact with each other after a lengthy gap in communications for many.

Mro Ethnic Group’s Ritual Slaughter Carries On Among Some

Min Tun 21 Jul 2022

On the second day of the ritual slaughter, villagers must go up the hill to cut bamboo to build a traditional platform. The villagers use the bamboo they have to cut to build a traditional platform attached to the host’s home.

Drumbeats of War Leave Arakan on Edge

Gaung 01 Jul 2022

Over the past year, the AA has consolidated its control of large parts of Arakan State, strengthening its administrative grip — complete with a judicial system and police force separate from the junta’s own. Operating alongside the regime’s administration, perhaps it was inevitable that the AA and its political wing, the United League of Arakan (ULA), would find themselves on a collision course with the military. 

Ethnic Thet People Fear a Fading Identity

Gaung 27 Jun 2022

A large segment of the Thet population resides in remote areas with very limited access to public services as well as opportunities to improve their living standards. To make matters worse, many from Maungdaw, who mainly have engaged in farming for their livelihoods, were forced to flee after violence broke out in the border town. The displaced have since reached different parts of the country, scattering among big societies of other ethnic people.

In Arakan and Beyond, Journalism Bent but Not Broken for Post-Coup Myanmar 

Nay Myo Linn 12 Jun 2022

Myanmar’s young democracy vanished abruptly when the military seized power from the elected civilian government in a coup on February 1, 2021. Myanmar people, who were just starting to become familiar with the democratic process, were pushed back into yet another era of dictatorship. 

Mourning an Arakanese Martyr, Celebrating a Revolutionary Spirit

Gaung 04 Jun 2022

Nine leaders who were serving at the naval base in Thanlyin, including Khaing Moe Lun and Khaing Ray Khaing, were detained and jailed, marking a period of hiatus for their armed revolution. In 1972, they were released in a general amnesty by the BSPP government. Khaing Moe Lun then returned to his native village and worked as a merchant, according to family members. 

Arakanese Political Parties at a Crossroads

Nay Myo Linn 03 Jun 2022

U Pe Than, a 66-year-old veteran Arakanese politician who won a seat in two consecutive general elections, stepped away from party politics last year in favour of what he describes as an activism that is instead based on national interest. His decision came in the context of an era in which the popular stance increasingly seems to view party politics as having come to a dead end in Arakan State. 

Sparks of Conflict Threaten a Return to Flames of War in Arakan State

Gaung 30 May 2022

With the regime under increasing military pressure from resistance forces collectively known as the People’s Defence Force (PDF) as well as ethnic armed organisations like the Karen National Union (KNU), the AA is again under the spotlight and is widely viewed as a potential game changer in what is known as the anti-coup “Spring Revolution”. 

Abandoned Tinma village still waits for return of its conflict-displaced residents

DMG 24 Apr 2022

Tinma village was once a so-called “model village,” with a cottage hospital and a basic education high school that neighbouring villages also relied on. Today, the village is anything but a model. Scores of homes in Tinma, as well as the village monastery, were damaged or destroyed in fighting between Myanmar’s military and the Arakan Army (AA), which plagued much of Arakan State from late 2018 to 2020.

Arakan Army Grows Up Quickly

DMG 15 Apr 2022

On April 10, 2009, 26 young people took a solemn oath to pursue a daunting dream on Ja Du Kaung Hill near Laiza, Kachin State, close to the Chinese border in northern Myanmar, where the Kachin Independence Army (KIA) ethnic armed group is headquartered. 

Arakanese Political Parties Navigate a Dark Hour for Democracy

Thar Gyi Auratha 01 Apr 2022

Myanmar’s military seized power from a democratically elected government on February 1, 2021, citing electoral fraud in the 2020 general election as the reason for their coup. More than a year after the takeover, people across the country are still resolutely resisting military rule, demanding a return to democracy. 

When It Comes to Trash, Downstream Issues Are Everyone’s Problem

Thiha 15 Mar 2022

The Sat Yoe Kya Creek flows south of the Kaladan River to the Minkan River; about eight miles long, and was once a major commercial artery of Sittwe. As the population along the waterway grew over the years, its colour changed, gradually becoming more sullied by household waste and other pollutants, locals say.  

Mrauk-U’s UNESCO World Heritage Bid Has a Drug Problem

Myo Thiri Kyaw 03 Mar 2022

A final proposal seeking to designate Mrauk-U as a UNESCO World Heritage Site was submitted to the World Heritage Committee in Paris on December 30, according to the Department of Archeology and National Museum. The building of squatter homes and other alterations to the landscape, however, are among the activities that may be jeopardising the UNESCO heritage bid, conservationists say. 

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