Over 451,000 IDPs in Burma in 2008: Report – At least 451,000 people have been internally displaced in eastern Burma alone as of October 2008 as a fall out of the continuous conflicts between the Burmese Army and ethnic armed rebels and the subsequent human rights violations, according to a new report released by the Geneva-based International Displacement Monitoring Centre (IDMC). The IDMC found that in eastern Burma, particularly in Karen, Karenni, Shan, and Mon states and Tenasserim division, IDPs are mainly the result of the Burmese military-government’s human rights violations. - Mizzima - 6 March 2009
Report: International Displacement Monitoring Centre (IDMC) Report – Myanmar: Conflicts and human rights violations continue to cause displacement – Report – 5 March 2009
2010 Elections: Junta tentatively schedules for March 2010 as political parties form - Although the ruling junta has not made any announcement regarding the timing and the election law that would allow the formation of political parties, the top-ranking Generals in Naypyitaw have tentatively planned to hold the polls in March 2010.
The Union Solidarity and Development Association (USDA), the main mass organization of the Burmese military junta, is reportedly very close to announcing the formation of a pro-junta political party for the 2010 general election. USDA sources said that a pro-junta political party might be announced before Burma’s New Year Festival in April, if the election law is made public by then.
Twenty five independent candidates set to contest the 2010 general elections have formed a network known as the Third Force. According to a statement, the network will comprise of independent candidates, organizers and sympathizers who will assist in contesting the elections. All the network members have accepted the junta's 7-fold roadmap and constitution, which was approved in the May 2008 Referendum.
Myanmar Egress denies rumours of contesting in 2010 polls - Mizzima - 5 March 2009
USDA Close to Unveiling New Political Party - Irrawaddy – 5 March 2009
USDA Going to Press? - Irrawaddy – 4 March 2009
Burmese Junta tentatively schedules elections for March 2010 - Mizzima - 4 March 2009
Independent candidates establish network to contest 2010 elections - Mizzima - 3 March 2009
Mon Party Ponders the Constitution and Election - Irrawaddy – 2 March 2009
Poppy cultivation in Burma up again: US State Department – A new report by the US state department said opium production, cultivation of poppy and the number of opium farmers have once again soared in Burma since 2007, despite a decreasing trend in earlier years. The ‘2009 International Narcotics Control Strategy Report’ said Burma, which had slowly brought down poppy cultivation since 1996, is once again registering a rise since 2007 with several acres of farms being cultivated in Eastern, Northern and Southern Shan State and Kachin State in northern Burma. The report said both the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime and U.S. surveys of opium poppy cultivation indicate a significant increase in cultivation and potential production in 2007 and export of synthetic drugs has continued to be on the rise. - Mizzima - 2 March 2009
Myanmar denounces US rights, drugs reports: state media - AFP – 5 March 2009
Report: 2008 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices: Burma released by the U.S. Department of State - 25 February 2009 (EBO link)
Opinion: Wean Burma off drugs - Bangkok Post – 3 March 2009
End the plight of Asia's poppy farmers – by Tom Fawthrop - guardian.co.uk - 5 March 2009
Arrests and releases – Burmese military authorities in Rangoon have rearrested a former political prisoner, Sein Hlaing (44). After he was released from 14 years in prison, he was involved in the National League for Democracy’s humanitarian assistance programmes and helped former political prisoners.
Meanwhile, Burma has released two lawyers who were convicted of contempt of court and sentenced to four months in prison while representing student activists in November 2008. Supreme court lawyers U Aung Thein and U Khin Maung Shein were released Friday (6/3) after serving their full sentences.
Former political prisoner detained - Mizzima - 8 March 2009
Burma Releases Lawyers From Prison After Contempt Conviction - VOA News - 06 March 2009
Families struggle as soaring kyat halves remittances from migrant workers – Families reliant on funds send home by relatives working abroad are struggling as remittances from workers drop while the value of the kyat soars, say sources in Mon State. In January, news agencies began reporting a shocking rise in the kyat. It is currently valued at 1,013 kyat to the US Dollar and 27.5 to 1 Thai baht, up from 1,215 kyat in December. The value of the kyat has risen significantly this year and many agents working in the money transfer service have commented that the overall amount transferred has halved, as has the number of migrants sending money. - IMNA - 5 March 2009
Myanmar steps up combating human trafficking - Xinhua – 9 March 2009
Christians gird for war in Myanmar - The Washington Times - 6 March 2009
2 blasts strike Myanmar's biggest city - AP – 3 March 2009
Censor Board will digitize censorship - Mizzima News - 7 March 2009
Myanmar drawing private-companies-involved reforestation plan - Xinhua – 8 March 2009