|An AAPP staff member briefs a tourist on Myanmar's political history. Photo: Portia Larlee|
The Friendship Bridge that connects Myawaddy to Mae Sot is a sight for sore eyes after a 15-hour bus ride from Yangon to the booming Thai border town. If you travel direct from Yangon you will likely arrive at the border by late morning and will need to shed the sweater, hat, mittens and socks that kept you warm in the over-chilled air-conditioning on the bus. But don’t worry, the protracted immigration process allows plenty of time to wake up, readjust your luggage and prepare for the short walk across the Moei River to Thailand.
Karen News journal pushes boundaries as it expands
|Nan Paw Gay. Photo: Portia Larlee|
Nan Paw Gay did not become a migrant worker out of necessity. She chose to work as a nursery school teacher and then as a live-in cleaner in Bangkok after graduating from Mawlamyine University in 1995 because she wanted to understand the experience of millions of Myanmar people who went abroad to seek a livelihood. She was a journalist then, without realising.
Inside the factory walls: Myanmar radio reaches migrants in Thailand
|Mae Sot MAP Radio station manager U Naw Kham. Photo: Portia Larlee|
The thousands of Myanmar migrants working at factories and farms in and around the Thai border town of Mae Soe rely on one media source: community radio. It is a medium that transcends factory walls, immobility due to precarious immigration status – and illiteracy.
Building a better future for the rural poor
|Rice farmers in Irrawaddy region. Photo: Min Min|
The years of military rule left the Myanmar economy in tatters. State control and economic isolation led to the emergence of a large informal economy, a crippled manufactoring sector and widespread poverty. A small elite profited, but most of Myanmar had to deal with shortages, unemployment and inflation.
Karen mark a revolution and yearn for peace
|Karen National Liberation Army soldiers at the KNLA/Karen National Union headquarters in Kayin State. CREDIT Portia Larlee|
Saw An Ya, 47, can barely recall the day he was shot during combat. He is no longer sure of the year. He remembers a thunderous barrage and shielding his face with a hand as Myanmar government forces opened fire. Saw An Ya lost his left eye and, without proper medical treatment, was left with permanently broken fingers.
Five Kachin parties to compete against USDP proxy in elections
|USDP members campaigning in the run-up to the 2010 elections. Photo: Thet Htoo/EPA|
An interesting political battle is looming in Kachin State, where six ethnically based parties have registered for the general election due to take place later this year.
Reporters without bylines: women journalists in minority areas
|UN secretary general Ban ki-Moon addressed the Myanmar press in Nay Pyi Taw in November 2014. Photo: Hong Sar (Ramonya)|
Ma Shanmalay was standing outside her home in Taunggyi one cool evening in January 2013 when she was attacked by a young man who slit her cheek with a crude construction tool. Blood was everywhere, recalled Ma Shanmalay, a reporter for the Shan Herald Agency for News, who days before had broken a story about police corruption. It implicated her assailant’s father, a police officer. Ma Shanmalay had her face cut open for doing her job as a journalist.
Palliative care in Myanmar: hospices and help from visiting specialists
|Photo: Hong Sar (Ramonya)|
Breath is not bated at the U Hla Tun Cancer Hospice in a Yangon’s rural East Dagon Township and time, for its 50 patients, appears neither a burden nor a blessing. visitors may emerge from the hospice compound feeling oddly at peace with their own mortality – but unquestionably grateful for more time.
Visiting minister promotes Israel’s agricultural expertise
|Photo: Hong Sar/Mizzima|
Israel is hoping to conduct agricultural trials in Myanmar to demonstrate techniques that can produce tenfold increases in crop yields, Agricultural Minister Yair Shamir said on January 14.
Bad luck and hostile circumstances
Which mountain is the highest in Myanmar – and mainland Southeast Asia – is still under debate. Some say Hkakabo Razi is the highest with an estimated height of 5,881 metres. Only one mountaineer, Japan’s Takashi Ozaki, has summited Hkakabo Razi, he did so in 1995. He would later die on the flanks of Mount Everest.