Covid-19: A Grave Threat to Humanity

Aung Lin Hein (SKY) 29 Aug 2021

The coronavirus, which originated in Wuhan, China, has been threatening people around the world since December 2019. Humanity has not yet been able to defeat the virus, which invades the respiratory system, attacks the lungs and takes lives.  

The Future of Arakan State Under the Arakan Army’s Political Leadership

DMG 25 Aug 2021

The AA chief said in an interview with Arakkha Media on August 16 that the Arakan Army had been calling for a confederacy since 2019 and would attempt to regain Arakanese’s sovereignty. At the same time, the AA chief said that staff from the AA’s judicial sector in Arakan State will be paid salaries. On the one hand, I see this as a public declaration of financial security in addition to the strength of the AA.

A Country Where the Rulers Are Poor

Zaw Zaw 17 Aug 2021

Our country is affected by natural disasters every year. Despite the abundance of natural resources, very poor rulers have not only been unable to build adequate irrigation dams, but have also been unable to prevent natural disasters.

An Emerging Nation-State Under the Arakan Army’s Leadership

15 Aug 2021

On the one hand, the political leadership of the Arakan Army in Arakan State and the political stance of the Arakanese people have emerged as a unique model. The Arakan Army, which has been campaigning for a Confederate position, has ended two years of fighting with the Tatmadaw in Arakan State and is politically leading Arakan State. Despite the military council’s actions in Arakan State, the local government’s administration has become less active. 

Amid New Covid-19 Onslaught in Myanmar, Oxygen Becomes More Precious Than Gold

Aung Kyi Moe 02 Aug 2021

“Where can I get oxygen?” and “Can someone please tell me how I can refill oxygen?” are the types of posts that have flooded social media every day over the past month in Myanmar, after the Southeast Asian nation was hit by a fresh wave of the deadly coronavirus in late May. 

Arakan State Becomes Isolated Amid Political Unrest and a Viral Enemy in Myanmar

Min Htee 29 Jul 2021

The military council released many prisoners from prisons in an amnesty, but did not include those arrested for political beliefs held following the coup. It shows that the military council is not yet willing to resolve the political crisis. Voice of America (VOA) has confirmed that seven women prisoners were killed in riots in Insein Prison, but the full extent of the violence in the prison has not been confirmed. 

A Nation Plagued by Pandemic in the Midst of Conflict

Min Htee 24 Jul 2021

Arakan State has not seen any fighting since the military coup and there has been little anti-coup activity. On a national scale, Arakan State has been a beacon of relative stability since the military took power. But as the Covid-19 death toll climbs in Arakan State, there is reason to believe that the military’s handling of the third wave could sour the moods of Arakanese people who did not show the same kind of visceral rejection of the military government in the immediate aftermath of its coup.  

Let’s Revive the Lonely Libraries

Aung Lin Hein 01 Jul 2021

While visiting Japan in 2016, I had the opportunity to visit Sendai Mediatheque in Sendai, Japan. I envied the Japanese people reading in this magnificent library, media and art space. Japan is notorious for its long-hours work culture. Surprisingly, many Japanese still find time to read and study books and literature. I remember seeing young and old alike sitting in the library, and imagining a time when libraries in our country would be like Japan’s.

Can Junta Succeed at Kyaukphyu Where Previous Governments Have Stumbled? 

Min Htee 21 Jun 2021

The Kyaukphyu Special Economic Zone (SEZ) project is an amalgam of many interests. It is geopolitically sensitive, and will help give rise to the political power of an already powerful China. The Kyaukphyu SEZ is a very important project for China’s dreams of world domination. 

Can Junta Succeed at Kyaukphyu Where Previous Governments Have Stumbled?

Min Htee 12 Jun 2021

CMEC is designed to include up to 33 projects, including the Kyaukphyu deep-sea port and construction of the Kyaukphyu-Ann-Padan-Minbu road, which is part of the Kyaukphyu-Kunming railway project. The Kyaukphyu Special Economic Zone was not approved by the NLD government but rather was inked by the Thein Sein administration, considered the NLD’s quasi-civilian predecessor (2011-15). At the time, China and Myanmar signed an agreement to develop the Kyaukphyu Special Economic Zone project at an 85:15 ratio. 

Should the ANP Be Reorganised?

Min Htee 01 Jun 2021

A statement issued by Arakan National Party (ANP) Chairman U Thar Tun Hla at a press conference on May 5 said the ANP’s decision to suspend its affiliation with the military-led State Administration Council was illegal and inconsistent with party policy. The issue was posted on the social media page of the ANP’s policy steering committee. The party’s Central Executive Committee has no authority to decide whether or not to continue working with the State Administrative Council, and it is instead up to a meeting of the Central Committee (CC) to decide.

Our Scars Are All Similar

DMG 25 May 2021

Blood-stained slippers abandoned in the streets; armed security forces shouting orders at the citizens they are sworn to protect; and seemingly every day the sound of gunfire, explosions or both. This is the new reality in Yangon, Myanmar’s largest city. Six months ago, few would have predicted such scenes of bloodshed and chaos in the commercial capital.

Can the ANP Restore a Political Reputation in Decline?

12 May 2021

“We just worked together. We didn’t join the State Administration Council. For example, Daw Aye Nu Sein joined the State Administration Council because of offers from some people close to the Tatmadaw,” U Thar Tun Hla, chairman of the Arakan National Party (ANP), told reporters at a press conference on May 5. 

After Three Months of Cooperation With Junta, It Is Too Late for ANP to Mend Fences

Min Htee 10 May 2021

However, some Arakanese politicians who preferred to push for reforms through the parliament formed the Rakhine Nationalities Development Party (RNDP) to contest the first general election since the 1990 poll, in 2010. The RNDP won the largest number of seats in Arakan State — a testimony to the overwhelming support of Arakanese people for the party.

A Federal Fix for Myanmar in Crisis

Min Htee 07 May 2021

The military-drafted 2008 Constitution is against federalism and will not guarantee self-determination for ethnic states. The National Unity Government (NUG), the new shadow administration that was formed in mid-April by deposed parliamentarians to oppose the junta, has announced that it has scrapped the 2008 Constitution. When there is no common ground, talks between the two sides are unlikely.

Bullied, Bullies and Arakan Society

Moe Myint 27 Apr 2021

Because there was no road, locals had to travel through the mountains for three hours and then take a ferry to sell vegetables in the town of Kyaukphyu. On their way back home, they were often robbed by dacoits in the forest.

Distilling the Way of Rakhita

Min Htee 20 Apr 2021

As the Arakan Army (AA) celebrated the 12th anniversary of its founding on April 10, not only Arakanese people but also the leaders of other ethnic groups waited with interest to read the remarks of AA Commander-in-Chief Major-General Twan Mrat Naing. From his message, they hoped to decipher the AA’s stance on Myanmar people’s resistance to the military coup of February 1.

How Myanmar’s Political Mess Might End

Min Htee 23 Mar 2021

Under U Than Shwe’s military regime, China did not encourage Myanmar’s democratic transition while Western countries imposed sanctions against Myanmar. It stood with military dictators and received many projects and substantial natural resources from Myanmar. So, the majority of Myanmar do not like and/or are actively against Chinese projects.  

Amid National Political Upheaval, Arakanese Attitudes Toward Coup Relatively Muted 

14 Mar 2021

People across Myanmar including in rural areas took part in the 1988 pro-democracy general strike, but today people from some parts of Myanmar are completely silent on the military coup. In some parts of the country, anti-coup protests have taken place but are relatively small, and it is questionable whether anti-military coups have left many people in ethnic states angry. 

In Arakan, a Litany of Challenges for Peacebuilders and Policymakers in 2021

31 Jan 2021

Arakanese people have had little say in the ongoing projects, such as the Shwe gas pipeline, which exports natural gas from the coast of Arakan to China, the Kyaukphyu Special Economic Zone (SEZ), and the India-sponsored Kaladan Multi-Modal Transit Transport Project. On the other hand, socioeconomic needs such as 24-hour electricity supply, access to quality education and healthcare, and decent roads and other transport infrastructure, remain unmet in many parts of Arakan State.

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