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First International Seminar of Tai Yai Studies successfully held in Mae Hong Son

Northern Thai News 87 – 02.07.2013 by Reinhard Hohler, Chiang Mai

Hosted by the Tai Yai Studies Center of Mae Hong Son Community College, the very first and two-day international seminar of Tai Yai Studies was successfully held in Mae Hong Son on June 29-30, 2013 in collaboration with the Center of Ethnic Studies and Development (CESD), Faculty of Social Sciences, Chiang Mai University.


Newsletter: Burmese art exhibition closing party + film screening added!

Dear Members and Supporters,

We have now reached the final week of our art exhibit "Borderline: Expression from the Thai-Burma Border", co-presented by The Best Friend and Borderline Collective at Sangdee Gallery in Chiang Mai. If you haven't yet had a chance to check out the exhibit, or if you would like to take another look, you are encouraged to do so during the next few days. The last day of the exhibition will be this Thursday, 27 June.

Thai-Myanmar border checkpoints to upgrade

Reinhard Hohler, Chiang Mai (17.06.2013)

Mae Hong Son officials are pushing forward a plan to upgrade its Ban Huai Ton Nun checkpoint with Myanmar to become a permanent border crossing in order to boost trade and transport.

The Kaladan Project updated

Reinhard Hohler, Chiang Mai (11.06.2013)

The multi-million dollar Kaladan Multi-Modal Transit Transport Project - slated for completion in 2015 - will see the construction of a combined inland waterway and highway transportation system connecting Mizoram State in Northeast India with a Bay of Bengal deepsea port at Sittwe, Rakhain State in Western Burma. The Project, classified as development aid to Myanmar, is a cornerstone of India's "Look East Policy" aimed at expanding Indian economic and political influence in Southeast Asia. It is currently being constructed in Rakhain and Chin States - Myanmar's least-developed and most poverty-prone states - where improved infrastructure is badly needed. Yet it remains an open question whether the Kaladan Project will be implemented in a way that ensures the people living along the project route are the principal beneficiaries of this large-scale infrastructure development.

Myanmar unveiled its Tourism Master Plan

Reinhard Hohler, Chiang Mai (10.06.2013)

During this year’s World Economic Forum in NAY PYI TAW, MYANMAR on 5 June 2013, the quasi-civil Government of Myanmar, alongside the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the Government of Norway, unveiled a Tourism Master Plan, which outlines 38 development projects valued at nearly a half billion dollars that will help increase Myanmar’s tourism competitiveness, protect environmentally important areas, and safeguard ethnic communities.

'Burma in the Spotlight' -- only 5 days 'til the big event!

Dear Best Friend Members and Supporters,

Our gala fundraising benefit evening, Burma in the Spotlight, is now only five days away! All of our staff and volunteers are working madly in these final few days to ensure all of the wonderful pieces are in place. We are confident that this will be an amazing evening to remember, all in support of a great cause: The Best Friend Library in Chiang Mai, our new library and Green Training Program in Shan State, and our 'Compassionate Care' projects supporting the medical needs of refugees and migrants from Burma who have experienced extraordinary difficulties, including Chaa Nay Choo and Sai Khong Naitun.

Emerging women of Burma

Dear friends,

We women will run an awareness raising campaign about women’s contribution to society in Burma.  We want to promote women role models for the new generation.  The campaign will run online in English and Burmese and an event will be organized in Chiang Mai in August-September 2013. We also hope to collaborate with print and online media to widen the campaign’s audience.

Nine Shan FBR Teams Complete Leadership and Ethnic Unity Training and go on Relief Missions in Shan State

Nine Shan FBR Teams Complete Leadership and Ethnic Unity Training and go on Relief Missions in Shan State

25 May 2012
Shan State, Burma

This month nine new Shan FBR relief teams complete their 8th annual Shan leadership and ethnic unity training. Lead by Shan, Karen and Karenni FBR staff , Â the new teams learned medical, reporting, lifesaving, swimming, counseling, photography, video, mapping, land navigation, GPS, Good Life Club outreach to children, leadership, rappelling and many other skills to prepare for relief missions in Shan State.

Thein Sein and China must stop pipeline project to prevent escalation of conflict in northern Shan State

May 22, 2013
Press release by Shan community based organisations

Shan community based groups warn that recent Burmese government army attacks in northern Shan State, causing displacement of over 3,000 villagers, are directly linked to China’s oil and gas pipelines, and urge Burmese President Thein Sein and China to stop the project immediately before violence escalates even further.

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Shan Drug Watch Newsletters


Last of the breed: life of a Shan prince (Part One)  Renowned Australian journalist Phil Thornton interviewed Sao Hso Hom, son of Sao Sam Tun, late Prince of Mongpawn and


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