Majority-Buddhist Myanmar is made up of eight major and eight minor ethnic groups, each of which hoped for autonomy after Burmese independence 70 years ago, and some of the world’s longest-running civil wars continue here. Operation World, a Christian missionary organisation, calls Myanmar “a deeply fractured nation on a political and especially ethnic level”. The conflict zones along the country’s borders are where most of Myanmar’s Christians live, including the Kachin and Karen ethnic minorities, which have faced years of government oppression. Meanwhile, the rise in the number of Muslims has provoked the Patriotic Association of Myanmar, locally known as Ma Ba Tha and led by influential Buddhist monks. Ma Ba Tha is not merely anti-Muslim, it is Buddhist nationalist, so Christians are not beyond its focus.

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Myanmar Christians join latest peace talks

Myanmar’s Christians have joined other ethnic groups at this week’s five-day peace conference in the capital, Nay Pyi Taw, aimed at ending decades of conflict. The conference was attended by the UN Secretary-General, but some critics say it’s happened without enough preparation and consultation. The 17 ethnic groups, including representatives […]

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Ethnic affairs ministry ‘vital’ to Myanmar

Myanmar’s new President-elect says the appointment of a new ethnic affairs ministry is “vital” for the country’s future. In his first public address, Htin Kyaw said the ministry would be central to Myanmar’s “peace, development and sustainability”. Myanmar is made up of eight major ethnic groups, who all hoped for […]

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After Aung San Suu Kyi’s election win, Myanmar’s displaced Kachin are hopeful they can go home for Christmas

After Aung San Suu Kyi’s election win, Myanmar’s displaced Kachin are hopeful they can go home for Christmas

As democracy icon Aung San Suu Kyi prepares to assume power in Myanmar, two Baptist leaders among the country’s ethnic Kachin refugees are cautiously expecting more freedom to live their Christian faith, perhaps as soon as this Christmas. More than 100,000 ethnic Kachin, displaced due to civil war that broke […]

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