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In rural Myanmar, rail lines founder while military spends

The pre-dawn air is crisp at Saikkhaung village, in Myanmar’s largely rural Shan State, as I board the 5 a.m. train for the three-hour journey to Taunggyi, the state capital. Women sit on the floor in the passenger coaches, stringing together sardine-sized fish to be sold in the daily market near Taunggyi railway station, alongside […]

In Myanmar, Facebook brings light as well as darkness

It has been more than eight months since Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg was grilled by the US Congress over the Cambridge Analytica breach. “I promise I will do better” would be a simple short sentence to sum up Zuckerberg’s stressful two-day congressional testimony. He admitted to US senators that partly because of his mistake it […]

Facebook takes down more Myanmar accounts over military links

Facebook Inc (FB.O) has removed hundreds of additional accounts, pages and groups in Myanmar from its social networks after discovering what it called “coordinated inauthentic behaviour” and links to the country’s military. The social media giant had previously removed accounts, including that of Myanmar’s army chief, after criticism it had failed to act on hate […]

Japan Inc. pours cash into Myanmar despite Rohingya crisis

YANGON — Japanese companies are investing aggressively in Myanmar with help from Tokyo, even as their European and American counterparts shy away while hundreds of thousands of Rohingya Muslims flee the country to escape persecution. Japan’s businesses were approved to devote a record $1.47 billion to the Southeast Asian nation for the fiscal year ended […]

Zuckerberg apologized for Myanmar Violence

Last week, after frustrated activists from Myanmar sent an open letter to Mark Zuckerberg, the chief executive of Facebook, they got something unexpected: a reply. The activists, representing six civil society organizations, harshly criticized Mr. Zuckerberg in the letter, saying he had mischaracterized Facebook’s response to violence-inciting messages in Myanmar and had not devoted sufficient […]

US Slaps Sanctions on Myanmar General Over Rohingya Campaign

The United States imposed sanctions Thursday on a Myanmar army chief accused of leading an ethnic cleansing campaign against Rohingya Muslims. Myanmar General Maung Maung Soe was among 52 accused human rights abusers worldwide who are targeted by U.S. Department of Treasury sanctions. Also included was former Gambian President Yahya Jammeh, who the U.S. said […]

The Politics Of Myanmar’s Changing Tea Culture

Pulling low wooden stools out from under a short square table, a group of longyi-clad men sits down at an open-air tea shop in downtown Yangon, Myanmar. One man makes a kiss-kiss noise and calls out an order to the young waiter. Moments later, porcelain teacups filled with steaming laphet yay — sweet Burmese tea carefully mixed with black […]

In dirt-poor Myanmar, smartphones are transforming finance

MYANMAR’S democratic transition sometimes seems marked as much by continuity as by change. Depressingly, the army continues its bloody persecution of Rohingya Muslims in the west, for example (see article). But elsewhere moves to open the country’s markets, started by the preceding military regimes, have gathered pace. New commercial and financial services are springing up. […]

Boris Johnson caught on camera reciting Kipling in Myanmar temple

The foreign secretary has been accused of “incredible insensitivity” after it emerged he recited part of a colonial-era Rudyard Kipling poem in front of local dignitaries while on an official visit to Myanmar in January. Boris Johnson was inside the Shwedagon Pagoda, the most sacred Buddhist site in the capital Yangon, when he started uttering […]

Yangon Stock Exchange looks for Belt and Road boost

The Yangon Stock Exchange, launched in December 2015, expects to enjoy indirect benefits from China’s Belt and Road Initiative as more Sino-Myanmar joint ventures are set up and demand for capital increases. “China is a major economic and trade partner with Myanmar. Myanmar’s enterprises need to grow together with their Chinese counterparts,” said Thet Htun […]