India-Myanmar: partners in progress

After decades of isolation, India’s eastern neighbour – Myanmar is now perceived as a link to new markets. The transformation of ‘Look East Policy’ into the much coveted ‘Act East Policy’ has also added to the significance of Myanmar in India’s foreign policy considerations. Over the years, India’s policy towards Myanmar has been largely shaped […]

Myanmar white roses offer Eid solidarity to Muslims

YANGON: Myanmar Buddhists handed out white roses to Muslims heading to pray Wednesday (Jun 5) to mark the end of Ramadan – the culmination of a rare show of solidarity in a country where Islam is often vilified. Volunteers lined up outside Dargah mosque in eastern Yangon, giving flowers to scores of devotees heading inside […]

The Muslim woman breaking barriers in sex education in Myanmar

Adjusting her hijab and looking around the class, Dr Thet Htwe starts the day’s lesson with a simple question. “Who wants to know about the human sexual response?” Everyone raises their hand, some sheepishly giggling. In a country where there’s still a debate over the proper word to use for “vagina” and simply talking about […]

Yangon University is modelled on Oxford, but there are no dreaming spires

Walking around Yangon, though there are the affluent areas and fast food restaurants that exist in nearly all big cities, these areas are few and far between. Poverty pervades in this former capital city to a greater extent than in many of its Southeast Asian counterparts. The military regime, though removed in 2013, has had […]

Myanmar’s Radical Buddhist Group Gets Rebuked

Myanmar’s nationalist Buddhist group known as The Committee for the Protection of Nationality and Religion (Ma Ba Tha) has suddenly found itself losing support from government officials and the online community. First, Yangon Region Chief Minister U Phyo Min Thein boldly declared in public that Ma Ba Tha is “unnecessary and redundant” since there is […]

Wellingtonians carving out family life in Myanmar

Somewhere on the edge of Yangon, Myanmar some children speaking a variety of languages are playing in a pool. Two women sit watching the children play. Both are Wellingtonians, living in Myanmar where their husbands work, getting used to bringing up children in a culture far removed from their own. It’s the life of expat […]