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Bishop calls for jade mine regulations in Myanmar

Mandalay (UCAN): Bishop Francis Daw Tang of Myitkyina, Myamar, called for an urgent improvement of jade mining regulations and protect the environment. He said there are no proper regulations or systems for properly managing soil dumps that have killed hundreds of people annually in conflict-stricken Kachin State.
 

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Stepping up aid to Myanmar flood victims

MANDALAY  (UCAN):  “We are getting more assessments and then delivering aid to other affected areas,” Father Paul Thar San, director of Karuna, in Hpa-an, the capital city of Kayin State, Myanmar. The area was been hit with strong monsoon winds and heavy rain since the third week of July, causing rivers to swell.
 
At least 11 people have died and more than 100,000 people have been displaced by the widespread flooding, according to the disaster management department.
 

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Myanmar farmland grabs condemned

MANDALY (UCAN): Myanmar must provide redress for illegally confiscating land and enact laws and regulations “to safeguard the rights of farmers” and other small landholders, the New York-based Human Rights Watch said in a July 17 report.
 
The report said that over the last 30 years the government as well as military officials have seized hundreds of thousands of acres from farmers while providing little or no compensation and that this has jeopardised their livelihoods and eroded their access to basic services.
 

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Buddhist group banned again in Myanmar

MANDALAY (UCAN): On July 20, Myanmar’s Sangha Maha Nayaka Committee (Ma Ha Na), the government-appointed body that regulates Buddhist clergy, ordered the Buddha Dhamma Parahita Foundation, formerly known as Ma Ba Tha, to end its activities and remove its signboards within 45 days.

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Stop the ecological holocaust cries Cardinal Bo

YANGON (Agenzia Fides):  “The world saw great holocausts in its history, the last was the nuclear holocaust in Japan. Now there are the first warnings of an ecological holocaust,” says Cardinal Charles Maung Bo of the Archdiocese of Yangon. 
 

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Catholic church attacked in Kachin

MANDALAY (UCAN): Witnesses reported that the Holy Family Catholic Church and a nearby house in Kamaing Kawng Ra village in Hpakant township, Kachin State, were attacked by Myanmese military amid sporadic fighting with Kachin rebels.
 
Parish priest, Father Peter Nlam Tu, said he heard an explosion near the village on the evening of May 30 and some minutes later heard shots.
 

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Rohingya reluctant to return home

MANDALAY (UCAN): “It’s telling that Rohingya aren’t clamouring to return to the places where they recently survived genocidal attacks. The authorities are attempting to distract the world from mass atrocities committed by the army,” Matthew Smith, chief executive of Fortify Rights, said, as it seems that a deal between the Myanmese government and United Nations (UN) agencies has done little to inspire confidence that refugees will agree to be repatriated from Bangladesh.
 

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Religious leaders back Myanmar peace efforts

BANGKOK (UCAN): “It is at a crucial moment in the history of this country that we, as Buddhist, Christian, Hindu and Muslim leaders from Myanmar and across the region, come to you in solidarity with hope for peace,” Charles Cardinal Bo of Yangon, along with leaders of other faith confessions, said in an open letter to the people of Myanmar.
 

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Myanmar’s forgotten civil war goes on

MANDALAY (UCAN): A largely forgotten civil war has been raging in Kachin State, Myamar, while the world’s focus has been on 700,000 Muslim Rohingya who have been fleeing a military crackdown in western Rakhine State since August 2017.
 
One of the longest-running civil wars in the world intensified dramatically in April when Myanmar’s military stepped up dry-season offensives using helicopter gunships and heavy artillery against the Kachin Independence Army (KIA), which is yet to sign a national peace agreement with the government.

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United Nations appeals for humanitarian access to Myanmar’s restive areas

MANDALAY (UCAN): Ursula Mueller, the United Nations (UN) assistant secretary-general for humanitarian affairs and deputy emergency relief coordinator, has called for unfettered humanitarian access to several crisis-hit states of Myanmar including the restive Rakhine state where large numbers of the Rohingya Muslim minority have fled security forces for Bangladesh since August 2017.
 

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