» 01/30/2013, 00.00
Authorities lift decades-old ban on public gatherings
Adopted in the late 1980s by the then ruling military junta to stop dissent, the ban only allowed gatherings of less than five people. Now the government wants to abolish all laws and regulations contrary to the constitution in order to protect freedom of expression. However, police charges people demonstrating for peace in Kachin state.
(AsiaNews/Agencies) - Burma's 'reformist' government
has lifted a ban on public gatherings of more than five people that was ordered
in 1988 on the day a military junta took power after crushing nationwide
pro-democracy protests. The 25-year ban allowed the military to crack down on
pro-democracy groups and cancel the 1990 election won by the National League
for Democracy (NLD).
The state-run Myanma Ahlin newspaper reported today that
Order No 2/88 was abolished as it was not in line with a section of the
constitution whereby existing laws should remain valid as long as are not
contrary to the constitution. The latter guarantees basic rights such as
freedom of expression.
Over the years, the
order was used to crush opposition to the military regimes that held power
until the semi-civilian government of President Thein Sein took office in 2011.
His administration has
instituted political and economic liberalisation, including lifting strict
censorship, to breathe new life into the country.
some issues remain unresolved, such as tensions with ethnic minorities (Kachin
and Rohingya) and the military remains the real power behind the throne.
In December 2011, a 'Peaceful
Assembly Law' was implemented specifically to allow public protests. However,
under the statute permission must be obtained in advance, without which organisers
are subject to penalties, including prison terms.
In fact, even though Myanmar
authorities are now required to ensure greater freedoms, this has not stopped them
from being violated.
Recently, police charged
five members of a group of peace marchers currently walking
from Rangoon to Kachin capital Laiza. Although none of them has been
arrested, each could be sentenced to a year in prison for each charge if they
are brought before a court.
Myanmar, Martyrs Day: an opportunity for the military junta for 50 more arrests
Yesterday in Yangon the military junta detained Human Rights activists and members of the National League for Democracy. Since 1988 the festival dedicated to Aung San, the hero who led the country to independence, is grounds for a confrontation between the military dictatorship and opposition.
Regime using Buddhism for propaganda purposes, monks say
Many delegations stay away from World Buddhist Summit in Yangon to protest against regime. At least 400 Buddhist monks are jailed sentenced to 15-20 years.
Supreme Court rejects appeal, NLD still illegal
After a hearing lasting a few minutes, the ruling was read out. An attorney for the NLD plans to appeal to the chief justice, but doubts remain as to whether Aung San Suu Kyi’s party will be re-established. Burmese exiled political leader calls for an independent commission of inquiry into war crimes and crimes against humanity in his country.
World Buddhist Summit: appeals to boycott Myanmar's military regime
Only 12 delegations have confirmed their presence at the summit. More than 300 Buddhist monks are in prison in Myanmar for "supporting democracy".
Burmese junta sign release order, Aung San Suu Kyi soon free
The leader of the Burmese opposition should be released Friday afternoon. At 5 pm, a press conference is scheduled at the NLD headquarters where hundreds of supporters have already gathered. The authorities tighten security measures around Suu Kyi’s home. Indian Christian activists welcome the news with joy, call for democracy in the country.
"Adopt a Christian from Mosul": A Christmas gift to survive winter
As Iraqi troops advance in the Nineveh Plain and Mosul, a new wave of refugees could overshadow the fate of other refugees who found hospitality in Kurdistan. People need kerosene, winter clothes, aid for children, and money for rent. The campaign AsiaNews launched two years ago is more urgent than ever. Give up a superfluous gift to offer refugees an essential gift for life.
Pastor of Amadiya: Mosul’s Christian refugees, torn between emergency aid and the longing to return home
P. Samir Youssef
In a letter Fr. Samir Youssef describes the situation of refugees, exiled from their home for more than two years. They are closely following the offensive to retake Mosul, although their homes and churches "are for the most part" burned or destroyed. With the arrival of winter there is a serve lack of heating oil, clothes, food and money to pay for their children’s school bus. An appeal to continue to support the AsiaNews campaign.
26/11/2016 CUBA - VATICAN
30/11/2016 CHINA - VATICAN
26/11/2016 CHINA - MONGOLIA
AsiaNews IS ALSO A MONTHLY!
AsiaNews monthly magazine (in Italian) is free.