Myanmar: Peace talks resume but ethnic autonomy not on the agenda

Myanmar's defacto leader Aung San Suu Kyi leaves the 2016 Panglong Conference. (Photo: AUNG HTET/AFP/Getty Images)
A third round of peace talks are taking place in Myanmar this week between armed ethnic groups and government forces, but the military has ruled out discussions on the autonomy that ethnic groups crave. The six-day meeting, which has been dubbed the 21st century ‘Panglong Conference’ after the historic 1947 . . . Read More

Myanmar: new peace talks announced during Pope’s visit

Pope Francis meeting Aung San Suu Kyi during his visit to Myanmar, Nov 2017 (Getty)
The third ‘Panglong Conference’ has been announced by Myanmar’s government during an official visit by Pope Francis, reports Catholic news agency Fides. Tabled for the last week in January, it will be the latest in a series of peace negotiations between armed ethnic groups and government forces. The original Panglong . . . Read More

Myanmar: Kachin Baptists jailed for helping photograph bombed church

Myanmar: Kachin Baptists jailed for helping photograph bombed church
Two Kachin Baptist pastors who helped a journalist to photograph a Catholic church, apparently bombed by Myanmar’s army in 2016, have been sentenced to two years in prison, for their alleged support of the Kachin Independence Army. According to advocacy group Christian Solidarity Worldwide, which called the verdict a “serious . . . Read More

Myanmar Baptists face eight years in prison for helping journalist to photograph bombed church

Myanmar Baptists face eight years in prison for helping journalist to photograph bombed church
Two Kachin Baptist pastors who helped a journalist to photograph a Catholic church bombed by Myanmar’s army face up to eight years in prison, reports the US-based Baptist Standard. Langjaw Gam Seng, 35, and Dumdaw Nawng Lat, 67, went missing on 24 December 2016 during a period of intense armed . . . Read More

USCIRF says Myanmar must ‘control’ its military

A new, critical report on religious freedoms in Myanmar by the US Commission on International Religious Freedom says the major challenge facing Aung San Suu Kyi’s government is “bringing the military under civilian control”. The report says the Burmese Army, which, due to constitutional provisions, is beyond civilian control, has . . . Read More

Freedom of religion among Myanmar’s ‘biggest challenges’

Freedom of religion among Myanmar’s ‘biggest challenges’
Cardinal Charles Maung Bo, Myanmar’s first Catholic Cardinal, at the UK Parliament in London, 25 May, 2016. World Watch Monitor   Myanmar’s first ever Catholic Cardinal has said protecting freedom of religion or belief for all is among the “biggest challenges” facing his country as it adapts to life after . . . Read More