Network Myanmar

                Documents of Interest

Top Ten Contemporary Articles on Myanmar Issues

Myanmar's Armed Forces and the Rohingya Crisis

Andrew Selth - US Institute of Peace: 'PeaceWorks' No 140 August 2018

Conclusion: The latest campaign against the Rohingyas has been a disaster for everyone. The Rohingyas have suffered most, but Aung San Suu Kyi, her government, the security forces, and the people of Myanmar have all lost, in different ways. Despite the high hopes that followed the 2015 elections, the country has stepped back into its dark past. This poses real challenges for

the international community.

All Myanmar governments have resisted external pressures to adopt or adapt particular policies.This is unlikely to change. Indeed, with regard to the Rohingyas, a rare consensus between the government, armed forces, and civil population can only strengthen Naypyidaw’s determination to decide its own agenda and timetable for any changes.

Unless attitudes in Myanmar shift significantly, a fair and durable solution to the Rohingya crisis, let alone a full legal accounting for past events, will remain a distant prospect.

Storm of Accountability gathers over Myanmar

David Scott Mathieson - Asia Times 17 August 2018

Extract: The one-year anniversary of the state-sponsored mass killings, rape and arson that brutally expelled over 700,000 Rohingya Muslims from Myanmar’s Rakhine state into neighboring Bangladesh is fast approaching, without any clear sign of resolution or accountability. On August 28, the UN Security Council is scheduled to hold a meeting on Myanmar to assess efforts on addressing the conflict. It is unlikely to be a happy event for the ruling National League for Democracy (NLD) government, as it is expected to find a lack of progress in investigating the violence, improving conditions for the Rohingya who remain in Rakhine and creating conditions for their safe and dignified return from Bangladesh.

'Illegal Migration' in Arakan: myths and numbers - Carlos Sardina Galache

New Mandala  - 16 August 2018

Extract: Given the available data, we can’t deny forcefully that there was some “illegal immigration” from Chittagong to Arakan after independence, but we can conclude that it would have been of a much smaller order of magnitude than that claimed by government sources and Rakhine and Burmese nationalists. Taking all the mentioned factors that would account for a higher growth among Muslims, I would venture that post-independence immigrants couldn’t have surpassed 5% of the total Muslim population of Arakan in 1983, or 1.4% of the total there (that is, around 30,000 people), and it is possible that the real figure was lower.

Unfolding Scenes behind the Curtain

Daw Htay Htay Win: Tea Circle Oxford - 8 August 2018

The author describes the history behind the distribution of Bogyoke  Aung Gyi’s 41 page letter of 9 May 1988. She notes that it took many people from all walks of life, taking part in all kinds of roles, to break the chains of military oppression and dictatorship in Myanmar and to take us to where we are today. Reflecting on this, the following article will be presented in two parts. The first part will delve into my thoughts on why it is important to recognize the efforts of those who struggle for freedom from dictatorship, even if they are not placed under the lime-light as a result. The second part is the transcription from U Maung Maung Tun Shwe’s original voice-recorded telling of the story of U Aung Gyi’s “41 page letter.”

[The texts of Aung Gyi's letters to General Ne Win in 1988 dated 7 March, 9 May and 8 June may be found at this link.]

The Security Council and Myanmar

Security Council Report - 31 July 2018

Summary: "In August, the Council is expected to hold a public meeting on the situation in Myanmar, one year after the 25 August 2017 attacks by the Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (ARSA) on security posts and the violent reaction by the Myanmar military forces that led to over 750,000 persons fleeing to Bangladesh. Secretary-General António Guterres, who has recently returned from Bangladesh, is expected to brief. The meeting will likely be chaired by a UK minister; a civil society briefer may also address the Council."

Disinformation and 'Fake News' - Interim Report

UK Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee - 29 July 2018

Extract - Paragraph 30: "Out of a 50 million population in Burma, there are 30 million monthly active users on Facebook. While Free Basics gives internet access for the majority of people in Burma, at the same time it severely limits the information available to users, making Facebook virtually the only source of information online for the majority of people in Burma. The United Nations accused Facebook of playing a determining role in stirring up hatred against the Rohingya Muslim minority in Rakhine State. In March 2018, the UN Myanmar investigator Yanghee Lee said that the platform had morphed into a ‘beast’

that helped to spread vitriol against Rohingya Muslims."

Examining India's Stance on the Rohingya Crisis - K Yhome

ORF Issue Brief - 11 July 2018

Abstract: "The current debate on Delhi’s approach towards the Rohingya crisis focuses principally on the implications. While this aspect, without doubt, deserves careful examination, there is a need for a more holistic understanding. This brief fills the gap by shifting the focus on the role that India is playing in finding a solution to the crisis. It looks beyond what the approach means for India and explores ways for Delhi to further deepen and expand its engagements in resolving the crisis. By doing so, the brief argues, Delhi may be able to regain its long tradition of dealing with refugees and create space for itself in taking a leadership role in the region––both of which have come under scrutiny recently.

They gave then long swords - Preparations for Genocide

Fortify Rights - July 2018

Extract: "Domestic remedies in Myanmar have been exhausted. The Government of Myanmar has consistently denied allegations of human rights violations in Rakhine State and failed to properly investigate and prosecute perpetrators. The government also refuses to cooperate with international human rights monitors,

including the U.N. Special Rapporteur Yanghee Lee and the Independent International Fact-Finding Mission on Myanmar, which the U.N. Human Rights Council created in March 2017 to “establish the facts and circumstances of the alleged recent human rights violations by military and security forces, and

abuses, in Myanmar, particularly in Rakhine State.” The international community must now act urgently."

Where Myanmar went wrong - Zoltan Barany (Frank C Erwin Jr)

Foreign Affairs - May/June 2018

Extract: "But the Rohingya are indisputably a distinct group with a long history in Myanmar. They are the descendants of people whom British colonial authorities, searching for cheap labor, encouraged to emigrate from eastern Bengal (contemporary Bangladesh) to the sparsely populated western regions of Burma in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries." 

Myanmar: an unfinished nation - Thant Myint U

Nikkei Asian Review - 17 June 2018

Extract: "Myanmar is a country changing fast. People are moving around as never before, both abroad and within the country, mixing and inter-marrying. Urbanization is gathering pace and soon most will live in a few of the bigger cities. Myanmar's leaders say they are marching toward democracy, peace and economic integration with the outside world. But the country carries with it the baggage of colonial-era ethnography and post-colonial nativism that can readily feed further ethnic conflict and renewed xenophobia.

"In this respect, Myanmar's biggest threat is not the return of dictatorship but an illiberal democracy linked to a negative nationalism. It is time for an honest and critical reexamination of history and a fresh search for a more inclusive, 21st century Myanmar identity."



Interim Report of the Investigation Commission on Maungtaw - 3 January 2017

Flash Report of OHCHR Mission to Bangladesh - 3 February 2017

Advance Unedited Report of the Special Rapporteur on Human Rights - 1 March 2017

Annan Advisory Commission Interim Report and Recommendations - March 2017

Myanmar Government welcomes Annan Advisory Commission Interim Report - 16 March 2017

HRC Resolution on the Situation in Myanmar adopted on 24 March 2017 without a vote

Report of the Special Rapporteur to the UN General Assembly - 8 September 2017

Mission Report of OHCHR Mission to Cox's Bazaar 13-24 September 2017

UN Security Council: Record of the 8060th Meeting on 28 September 2017

House of Commons: Debate Pack for use of MPs in the debate on 17 October 2017

UN Security Council: Text of Presidential Statement on Myanmar 6 November 2017

UN Security Council: Record of the 8085th Meeting 6 November 2017

Report of the UK Foreign Affairs Committee on Violence in Rakhine State 11 December 2017

UN Security Council: Record of the 8133rd Meeting 12 December 2017


Report of the UK International Development Committee on the Rohingya Crisis 9 January 2018

UN Security Council: Record of the 8179th Meeting on 13 February 2018

European Council Conclusions on Myanmar/Burma - 26 February 2018

Report by Bob Rae, Canadian PM's Special Envoy, on the Rohingya Crisis - April 2018

UN Security Council: Press Statement on UNSC Visit to Bangladesh and Myanmar - 9 May 2018

UN Security Council: Record of the 8255th Meeting on 14 May 2018

(Final Draft) Memorandum of Understanding between Myanmar, UNDP and UNHCR - May 2018


Statement By Cardinal Charles Bo, Archbishop of Yangon - 26 June 2017

An evolution of Rohingya Persecution: Middle East Institute - Zarni and Cowley 20 April 2017

A critique of  eight articles by U Ba Tha written between 1959 and 1966 - 7 March 2017

Interview with Vijay Nambiar: "No Country for the Rohingyas" - Rediff News 2 March 2017

An Innocent in La La Land? Misinformation in Dr Ibrahim's Book - 1 March 2017

Review of revised edition of Dr Ibrahim's book - 1 February 2018

ASEAN Foreign Ministers Retreat Yangon: Speech by Malaysian FM - 19 December 2016


1940: Report on Indian Immigration - Financial Secretary James Baxter 

Command Paper 7029 - Record of Conversations between HMG and Aung San

Extracts 1947 Panglong Hugh Tinker Volume II

Report of the Frontier Areas Committee of Enquiry 24 April 1947

1948: Death of Aung San - Allegations of British involvement

1972-1973: List of 144 [143] national ethnic races for use in the 1973 Census

Suu Kyi - Sao Shwe Thaik family relations: UK FCO correspondence 1973

Suu Kyi at Oxford 1979: Comments on Indians, British, Chinese and Japanese

1982 Citizenship Law     

1983 Citizenship Rules

Rohingya/Muslim Issues - Database

Thein Sein assures Guterres of legality of Bengali Immigration during British Rule

Burmese Text of Report by President's Office on 12 July 2012

RFA report of Thein-Sein Guterres Conversation on 11 July 2012

IMF - Myanmar 2016: Article IV Staff Report - 2 February 2017

Text of Bangladesh-Myanmar Agreement on Refugee Repatriation dated 23 November 2017


The UK's supposed complicity in the mass killings in Indonesia in 1965

Statement in Open Court Geidt and de Normann v. Pilger and CIT plc 5 July 1991

Background Notes

1. The Rewriting of History: Rohingya Anachronism - 7 May 2018

2. A comment on "Fact Sheet on the Rohingya" by Maung Zarni - 26 May 2018