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Wanted: one political agreement

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Aung San Suu Kyi

March 2014
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A biography of Aung San Suu Kyi

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UNSC Report No. 1- 4 Oct 2007
Update Report 19 September 2007_Myanmar (UNSC Report)
Update Report 22 Nov 2006_Myanmar
UN Report- Myanmar Opium Survey - Oct 2004
UNSC Report No. 1 - 10 September 2008
UNSC Report No. 4- 14 May 2008
Security Council-Report of the Secretary-General on children and armed conflict in Myanmar
Situation of Human Rights in Myanmar
Thayer The Myammar/Burma Issue: After Sanctions
■ SUPPLY AND COMMAND
■ Gas & Oil Connections - Myanmar lost to China- India's encirclement complete
AI Report June 2008
AI Report November 2007 AI Report December 2007
AI Report June 2005
AI Report on Myanmar briefing after Nargis
EIU Country Report :March 2009
EIU Annual Report : 2007
EU Conclusion on Myanmar - Oct 2007
Amnesty International- Sep 2007
■ A History of the Burma Socialist Party by Kyaw Zaw Win

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■ Recognition of Burma's Proliferation
■ Plagiarism in the Burma Nuclear SCOOP
■ Nuclear Proliferation and Burma the Hidden Connection
■ Burma's Secret Agreement With North Korea
■ BURMA-A-Threat-to-International-Security-and-Peace
■ Additional-Burmese-Missile-Sites-Identified
■ WMD Nexus Between North Korea and Burma
■ Where's the State Dept Nuclear Report on Burma
■ BURMA DIGEST Interview on Burma Nuclear
■ Analysis of Burma's Nuclear Program 1
■ Analysis of Burma's Nuclear Program 2
■ Russia Burma Nuclear Intelligence Report-1
■ Russia Burma Nuclear Intelligence Report-2
■ Arm-Including Nuke Dealing With N-Korea
■ Burma's China Connection and the India Ocean Region By Andrew Selth
■ NEITHER WAR NOR PEACE The Future of cease-fire Agreements in Burma
■ A Historical Overview of Political Transition in Myanmar Since 1988
■ Sino-Myanmar Economic Relations Since 1988
■ The Road to Naypyidaw- Making Sense of the Myanmar Government's Decision to Move its Capital
■ Southern Thai Politics - A Preliminary Overview

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Free Aung San Suu Kyi

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■ Images of Suspected Uranium Mine and Refinery in Burma
Exile Images: Photography
Grace under Pressure
Kalama Sutta
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Moving to Mars
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maynyane
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pu-htu-zin
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Chin Youth
Feraya,s new website-taigress
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Mae Sod Border action
Phan Foundation
Chin Human Rights Organization
Drum Publications
Human Rights Foundation of Monland (HURFOM)
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Karen Women’s Organisation (KWO)
Karenni Homeland
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Kawthoolei
Kuki Forum (KIF)
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The Chin Forum
The Rohingya Minority

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Burmese Women’s Union
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Karen Women’s Organisation (KWO)
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Women’s League of Burma
Women’s League of Chinland

NGOS

Burma Diaspora
Help without Frontiers
http://www.helfenohnegrenzen.de/
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Wanted: one political agreement
By Ei Ei Toe Lwin

To amend or not to amend – the constitutional issue hangs over Myanmar’s entire political landscape. While people have been told for many years that Myanmar would transform into democracy, over the past three years most have figured out that a political system based on the 2008 Constitution is far from the democracy that was promised.

president-thein-sein-and-aung-san-suu-kyi

President U Thein Sein and National League for Democracy leader Daw Aung San Suu Kyi shake hands at a Union Day ceremony on February 12. (Supplied/President’s Office)

While there have been positive changes, the state is facing new challenges, such as sectarian violence and civil war, complicated land disputes and the jailing of protesters exercising the fundamental right to freedom of expression.

Accordingly, “amend the 2008 Constitution” and “amend section 59(f)” – the clause that bars Daw Aung San Suu Kyi from the presidency – have begun to echo across Myanmar.

People and political groups from both Myanmar and abroad who want to establish a genuine democracy are calling for the changes to be made before the coming election.

And change appears to be coming. The parliament collected tens of thousands of submissions on which sections should be amended and has formed a committee that will submit a bill by the middle of next year.

The president has said he agrees the constitution should be reviewed and changed to meet international standards of democracy.

Meanwhile, the opposition National League for Democracy has held public awareness talks and informal polls across Myanmar that have drawn hundreds of thousands of people.

At the same time, however, some people in the hluttaw are trying to organise a campaign against constitution amendments, according to Pyithu Hluttaw representative Thura U Aung Ko. These are widely believed to be hard-line elements in Thura U Aung Ko’s own party, the Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP). Recently, some public events have been held to solidify support for keeping section 59(f) on the grounds it is needed for “national protection”. The controversial monk U Wirathu is a known advocate of section 59(f).

This has led to something of a tug-of-war that has cast doubt on whether section 59(f) – or indeed any sections of the constitution – will be amended before 2015.

Political analysts say Daw Aung San Suu Kyi is likely to face more obstacles and come under more concerted attacks from opponents in the coming 18 months as elections scheduled for late 2015 approaches.

However, if the government or other forces seek to maintain the constitution as it is, this is also likely to create instability in coming years, experts say.

Well-known analyst U Yan Myo Thein says what is needed to avoid instability and ensure fair elections next year has already been proposed months ago: four-way talks.

“There is no denying that there needs to be a political agreement between the USDP, government, military and Daw Aung San Suu Kyi. That’s why she urged a meeting of all four groups. They can get an agreement if they hold a four-way meeting,” he said.

In August, Daw Aung San Suu Kyi invited President U Thein Sein, Commander-in-Chief Senior General Min Aung Hlaing and Pyidaungsu Hluttaw Speaker Thura U Shwe Mann to participate in the talks. Since emerging from house arrest she has tried to cultivate positive relationships with all of them, but is closest to Thura U Shwe Mann.

Almost immediately proposed talks were nixed by President U Thein Sein, who argued they would undermine the parliamentary process. Daw Aung San Suu Kyi has vowed to try again and Thura U Shwe Mann has said he will accept the offer, but it remains unclear whether the government intends to consider it further.

While U Thein Sein appears to be the holdout, U Yan Myo Thein said it is just as likely that the military opposes the talks.

“Both the president and the commander-in-chief are members of the National Defence and Security Council. It may be that the military thinks it is early to meet Daw Aung San Suu Kyi or they do not yet trust her. Neither the government nor the military is ready to make political agreement yet,” U Yan Myo Thein said.

“But the military and the USDP need to accept the fact that Myanmar’s political reforms can only move forward through negotiation. All need to accept that building confidence and political give-and-take is important.”

Such a meeting, however, would be unusual in Myanmar, which largely lacks a political culture of negotiation.

Ko Myo Yan Naung Thein from the People’s Network for Constitutional Reform said it is likely that there are “invisible forces” at work behind the scenes.

“The proposal is very clear, so it is difficult to say why they are having problems meeting. As far as I know, the president and commander-in-chief are on good terms and the commander-in-chief once said he would follow the way set by former Senior General Than Shwe. We have to consider what is happening behind them,” said Ko Myo Yan Naung Thein, who is also the director of political training school Bayda Institute.

Such a meeting would have benefits not only for amending the constitution but also efforts toward national reconciliation and establishing a federal union system. He warned that without talks Myanmar risks perpetuating the cycle of conflict and instability it has endured since independence.

“If they can start the quadrilateral meeting, I also want to see a national ethnic representative involved. Then it will truly represent all people in Myanmar,” Ko Myo Yan Naung Thein said.

United Nationalities Federal Council general secretary U Khun Okkar agreed the issue has significance for ethnic minorities and also urged the inclusion of an ethnic representative. He believe there is no prospect of amending the constitution through the hluttaw alone but at the same time the peace process won’t be resolved unless there is constitutional change.

“All need to participate to find a solution for next year, when we expect to set a framework for political dialogue.

“We support the current situation in which all people including Daw Aung San Suu Kyi are trying hard to amend the constitution. From the outside we are also seeking to amend it.”

One recent event has given some hope of an impending breakthrough. The television broadcast of the Union Day ceremony in Nay Pyi Taw on February 12 clearly showed U Thein Sein, Senior General Min Aung Hlaing, Thura U Shwe Mann and Daw Aung San Suu Kyi seated together at the same table.

Is it an indication that the four plan to meet again for political talks?

“This kind of thing is never a coincidence. I’m sure it is deliberate,” said Ko Myo Yan Naung Thein. “This could lead to the starting of official four-way talks.”

Translation by Thiri Min Htun

http://www.mmtimes.com/index.php/home-page/143-editor-s-pick/9757-wanted-one-political-agreement-2.html

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ORGANIZATION SITES

Australia Campaign for Burma
Campaign for Burma
Austrian Burma Center
Actions Birmanie
Canadian Friends of Burma
Burma Center Prague
People in Need
Danish Burma Committee
Campaign for Democracy in Burma (Finland)
Info Birmanie
Burma Aktion
Burma Initiative Germany
Burma Bureau Germany
Democracy for Burma
Burma Action Ireland
Birmania Campaign
Birmania Campaign
Burma Info
Burma Centrum Netherlands
New Zealand Council of Trade Unions
Norwegian Burma Committee
Initiatives for International Dialogue
Polish Burma Solidarity
Associação de Defesa dos Direitos Humanos
FBC-SA
Birmania por la Paz
Swedish Burma Committee
Association Suisse-Birmanie
Strategy and Build
All Burma Federation of Student Unions (Foreign Affairs Committee)
Burma Partnership
Alternative ASEAN Network on Burma
Burmese community organisation
United States Campaign for Burma
National Coalition Government of the Union of Burma (NCGUB)
National Council of the Union of Burma
Altsean
Amnesty International
Amnesty International Crimes against Humanity in Eastern Burma report
Article 19
Assistance Association for Political Prisoners - Burma
EarthRights International
Free Burma’s Political Prisoners Now
Human Rights Treaties ratified by Burma
Human Rights Watch - Burma page
International Labour Organisation: Report on Forced Labour in Burma
Landmine Monitor Report: Burma 2008
Reporters without Borders
Arakan Rohingya National Organization (ARNO)
Christian Solidarity Worldwide

REPORTS

UNSC Report No. 1- 4 Oct 2007
Update Report 19 September 2007_Myanmar (UNSC Report)
Update Report 22 Nov 2006_Myanmar
UN Report- Myanmar Opium Survey - Oct 2004
UNSC Report No. 1 - 10 September 2008
UNSC Report No. 4- 14 May 2008
Security Council-Report of the Secretary-General on children and armed conflict in Myanmar
Situation of Human Rights in Myanmar
Thayer The Myammar/Burma Issue: After Sanctions
■ SUPPLY AND COMMAND
■ Gas & Oil Connections - Myanmar lost to China- India's encirclement complete
AI Report June 2008
AI Report November 2007 AI Report December 2007
AI Report June 2005
AI Report on Myanmar briefing after Nargis
EIU Country Report :March 2009
EIU Annual Report : 2007
EU Conclusion on Myanmar - Oct 2007
Amnesty International- Sep 2007
■ A History of the Burma Socialist Party by Kyaw Zaw Win

NUCLEAR

■ Recognition of Burma's Proliferation
■ Plagiarism in the Burma Nuclear SCOOP
■ Nuclear Proliferation and Burma the Hidden Connection
■ Burma's Secret Agreement With North Korea
■ BURMA-A-Threat-to-International-Security-and-Peace
■ Additional-Burmese-Missile-Sites-Identified
■ WMD Nexus Between North Korea and Burma
■ Where's the State Dept Nuclear Report on Burma
■ BURMA DIGEST Interview on Burma Nuclear
■ Analysis of Burma's Nuclear Program 1
■ Analysis of Burma's Nuclear Program 2
■ Russia Burma Nuclear Intelligence Report-1
■ Russia Burma Nuclear Intelligence Report-2
■ Arm-Including Nuke Dealing With N-Korea
■ Burma's China Connection and the India Ocean Region By Andrew Selth
■ NEITHER WAR NOR PEACE The Future of cease-fire Agreements in Burma
■ A Historical Overview of Political Transition in Myanmar Since 1988
■ Sino-Myanmar Economic Relations Since 1988
■ The Road to Naypyidaw- Making Sense of the Myanmar Government's Decision to Move its Capital
■ Southern Thai Politics - A Preliminary Overview

UN WORLD BODIES

Vale Earth Fair
Conservative Party Human Rights Commission
UN High Commissioner for Human Rights
US State Department report on Burma
US State Department report on human rights in Burma
Witness CIA World Factbook - Burma
News Statesman special issue on Burma (Jun 08)
Global Health Facts
HIV Information for Myanmar (HIM)
Mae Tao Clinic (Dr Cynthia’s clinic)
Three Diseases Fund

ART

Art-Exiled Burmese Hip Hop
Identity and Design

Library

Online Burma Library

Journalism

Development Gateway
Human Security Gateway
Inside Burma - Land of Fear
Inside Burma - Land of Fear

Aung San Suu Kyi Pages

Daw Aung San Suu Kyi pages
Daw Aung San Suu Kyi pages
Free Aung San Suu Kyi

PHOTOGRAPHY

■ Images of Suspected Uranium Mine and Refinery in Burma
Exile Images: Photography
Grace under Pressure
Kalama Sutta
Karen guerillas

MOVIES

Shwe Dream
Burma VJ
Inside Burma - Land of Fear
Inside Burma - Land of Fear
Moving to Mars
Kalama Sutta
The Hub, by Witness.

MONKS

English
Burmese

BDC SITES

Bdcburma
Bdcburma Burmese
Music
Italian
Swedish
Youtube
French
German
Bdc wordpress
Russia
Norwegian
Spanish
Hindi/ India
Portuguese
Italian
Dutch
Swedish
Japanese
News and Entertainment Portal
Flickr
Radio

BLOGS SITES

Nguyinpyin
Rebound88
Redo8888
Dr Lunswe
Lanka-msma
Damaahdama
Myo Chit myanmar
Maynyane
Flying Peacock
Maykha
Aeinstein
Moethaukkye
Binamo
Absdf8888
Blc Burma
DPNS
Ko Moe Thee
drlunswe
khinmamamyo
ko-htike
niknayman
soneseayar
maungdine
mmedwatch
maynyane
nineninesanay
linletkyalsin
shwebothar
peacefulwalkingtogether
publicenemies
weunite-weblog
freedomuprising
pu-htu-zin
internationalcampaignforfreedom Blog Generation Wave

ETNIC SITES

Chin Youth
Feraya,s new website-taigress
Free Burma Rangers
Hurform- HRF of Monland
Karen Human Rights Group
KNL Japan
KNU
Mae Sod Border action
Phan Foundation
Chin Human Rights Organization
Drum Publications
Human Rights Foundation of Monland (HURFOM)
Karen National Union (KNU)
Karen Women’s Organisation (KWO)
Karenni Homeland
Karenni Students Union (KSU)
Kawthoolei
Kuki Forum (KIF)
Rohingyas, the Forgotten People Shan Women’s Action Network (SWAN)
The Chin Forum
The Rohingya Minority

WOMEN

Burmese Women’s Union
Kachin Women’s Association Thailand
Karen Women’s Organisation (KWO)
Karenni National Women’s Organization
Shan Women’s Action Network (SWAN)
WEAVE - Women’s Education for Advancement and Empowerment
Women’s League of Burma
Women’s League of Chinland

NGOS

Burma Diaspora
Help without Frontiers
http://www.helfenohnegrenzen.de/
Latest IDP figure for Burma - Internal Displacement Monitoring Group
WEAVE - Women’s Education for Advancement and Empowerment
All Burma Federation of Student Unions (Foreign Affairs Committee)
All Burma Students’ Democratic Front
Burma Education Partnership (BEP)
Human Rights Education Institute of Burma
Prospect Burma
Federation of Trade Unions - Burma
Global Unions: Companies linked to Burma
Burma Border Projects (BBP)
Burma Children Medical Fund (BCMF)
International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC)
Burma Diaspora

SPDC SITES

New Light of Myanmar
The State Peace and Development Council (SPDC) website

ENVIRONMENTAL

Karen Rivers Watch
Living River Siam
Project Maje
Salween watch
Association for Sustainable and Responsible Investment in Asia
Burma Economic Watch
Business and Human Rights Resource Centre
Global Unions: Companies linked to Burma
Salween watch
SEEcompanies.com
Shwe Gas Movement
AIDS, TB, Malaria and Bird Flu spread unchecked in Burma
Back Pack Health Worker Team

NLD SITES

National League for Democracy (NLD) Liberated area UK Branch
NLD Japan
The National League For Democracy

Media SITES

BBC Burmese
Burmadaily
Burmanet
Democratic Voice of Burma
mizzima news
NEW ERA JOURNAL-KHITPYAING
Special Burma News
Shan Herald Agency
Kwekalu Karen News
Kuki Forum
Karen Information Center(KIC)
Burmese Events in UK
Burma Rivers Network
Mizzima Burmese
Burma Digest
Hit Tai
Khitpyaing
Burma Today
Burma daily
Burmalibrary
Yoma3
Kachin News
Kachin Post
Kaowao Newsgroup
Karen Human Rights Group
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