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burmanet news august 30 (r)

-------------------------- BurmaNet ------------------------------
"Appropriate Information Technologies, Practical Strategies"

THE BURMANET NEWS: August 30 , 1995
Issue #210

The only government capable of really and so swiftly achieving
so much progress in promoting the people's living standard, in
developing towns and countryside, in providing airports and
seaports, and in building pagodas, monasteries, hospitals,
dispensaries and parks, so far as I have clearly seen in my
whole life as a clergy and later as a layman, is the present
- U Phyoe in the New Light of Myanmar
 (quoted in The Irrawaddy)

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29 August 1995

VOICE of America radio broadcasts, a vital source in Burma for
uncensored news and information, have been jammed since early
August, listeners and US officials said yesterday.

The interference is manmade, said an official of the United
States Information Service in Rangoon, who requested anonymity.
It started on August 8th.

Voice of America officials have not commented.

Last Monday, the British Broadcasting Crop said its World Service
radio broadcasts in Burma were being jammed. Although the source
of the jamming could not be identified, it started shortly after
the BBC aired an interview with pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu
Kyi. Mrs Suu Kyi was freed on July 10 from six years of house

Many Burmese said they learned of Mrs Suu Kyi s release from
either the VOA or the BBC. Mrs Suu Kyi said she relied on the two
stations for news about Burma and the world during her detention.

The US official said he heard that VOA was not the target of the
jamming, and that it was caused by spillover from the attempts to
interfere with the BBC.

He said it was only jammed on one particular frequency. VOA,
which broadcasts in both English and Burmese, is available on a
total of seven frequencies at different times of the day. (BP)

==========================THE IRRAWADDY=======================

=================INDEPENDENT NEWS & INFORMATION==============

VOL.3 NO.21                            BURMA NFORMATION GROUP


Burmese democracy activists around the world marked the
seventh anniversary of 8888 in cities. 

Seven years ago, ten of thousands of democracy-loving Burmese
took to the streets. 

They asked for democracy, freedom and a better life but
instead they received severe punishment: bullets, bayonets and
prison. Thousands were murdered in broad day light. The
present military leaders who were responsible for the killings
never admitted the brutal massacre to the movement as

But the undeniable fact is that the spirit of 8888 is still
haunting the junta leaders. Burmese at home and abroad
continue to fight for their unfinished struggle. However, is
no one knows when will they achieve what they seen. And most
important of all, how long will they continue to suffer under
the present repressive military regime? 

 Burma's Gandhi,  or Aung San Suu Kyi, was released last month.
But she is still one of 45 million hostages under the regime,
which refused to respect the outcome of the 1990 election. One
month after her freedom the regime has shown no sign of
sincerity nor a willingness to open a genuine political
dialogue with Suu Kyi-led democratic forces.  

The truth in Burma is that genuine and peaceful political
dialogue is the  last bus  or final resolution all parties must
not miss out. All parties must believe in it and must work
harder. Slorc itself and the opposition should have no reason
to give lip-service to national reconciliation. As long as the
junta leaders refuse to recognize the role of the opposition
and fail to respect the will of the Burmese they will remain
pariahs in the world. 

The strife in Burma is not over. The international community
and Burmese opposition in exile should show their solidarity
with Burmese at home. The Slorc leaders will surrender to the
democratic forces, if they see a well-organized united front
at home and abroad.    The Editors 



Three weeks after they surprised the world by releasing Aung
San Suu Kyi from house detention, Burma s military rulers
renewed their propaganda war against the popular leader.  An
article in Tuesday s edition of the  official New Light of
Myanmar indirectly criticized Suu Kyi and suggested the
military rulers have no intention of to relaxing their
iron-fisted grip on the country.

The article s author, U Phyoe, said that  an ordinary Burmese
has other things in mind despite her usual rhetoric about
forgiveness, unity and cooperation. 

 Unlike [Karen insurgent leader] Bo Mya and drug warlord Khun
Sa, this person urged the international community to wait and
see if the junta is laying the groundwork for democratization
and national reconciliation before resuming aid to Burma,  the
article said.

The article appeared the same day as Burmese Foreign Minister
Ohn Gyaw reiterated Rangoon s position that Suu Kyi had no
future in domestic politics. Speaking at the recently-held
Asean annual meeting of foreign ministers in Brunei, he said
that Suu Kyi s marriage to a foreigner and certain  foreign
assistance  she has received were likely to preclude her from
ever participating in politics.  

A constitution being drawn up by a military-appointed body
contains a clause barring anyone married to a foreigner from
taking part in politics. It also guarantees the military a
 leading role  in politics. 

The article did not mention the Nobel Peace laureate by name,
but referred to comments that were a  hindrance  to foreign
assistance and were broadcast by the British Broadcasting
Corporation on July 15.

U Phyoe, a former Buddhist monk turned layman, said an attempt
to dissuade other countries from helping Burma was being made
by one person within the country. (BIG) 

On the night of 15 July, the BBC  in its news programme,
broadcast a news item aimed at hindering foreign
countries helping and assisting Myanmar. I U Phyoe, personally
heard it. What was astonishing to me in that was that the
person who dissuaded foreign countries from helping and
assisting Myanmar was not of the ilk of Khun Sa, the opium
bandit or Bo Mya, the imperialist henchman terrorist.

It was just one ordinary individual from among the masses who
expressed that malice against the State Law and Order
restoration Council and the masses of the people.

That had been diametrically opposed to the person s usual
rhetoric about forgiveness, unity and co-operation. Friends
and governments who, with a sincere desire to help Myanmar in
economic and social development, have been assisting the State
Law and Order Restoration Council Government that has been
effectively serving the interests of the country, are in
reality contributing in one way to the welfare of the clergy
and laity of Myanmar.

It is the 45-million people of Myanmar who are going to
directly benefit from such foreign assistance.

The only government capable of really and so swiftly achieving
so much progress in promoting the people s living standard, in
developing towns and countryside, in providing airports and
seaports, and in building pagodas, monasteries, hospitals,
dispensaries and parks, so far as I have clearly seen in my
whole life as a clergy and later as a layman, is the present

The State Law and Order restoration Council is earnestly
laying strong foundations and clearing the way for the future
Myanmar to proceed in a democratic process harmonious to
Myanma customs, Myanma habits and Myanma culture.
The State Law and Order Restoration Council is completely
rebuilding the country that had tottered in all respects.

At a time when a government, capable of decisively
implementing its noble intentions, is in power, there are
certain financial and technological limitations restraining
the government from doing everything it might wish to do every

If not for such limitations and restraints, the State Law and
Order restoration Council would have definitely achieved a
higher level of development than  has now been achieved.

In recognition of this state of affairs, a number of
sympathetic countries of the East, are now getting ready to
help, as much as they could, the State Law and Order
Restoration Council Government that has really, sharply and
successfully been serving the interests of the peoples.

At this juncture, as the Myanmars use to say, that a soup of
Pyipannyo vegetable could have been quite sweet if not for an
excess of salt in it, the above-mentioned hindrance was
uttered by a person from inside the country, unafraid of the
purgatory, unaware that it was a sin and unknowing that it was
a mental defilement.

In order that lessons may be taken from this episode by the
pious keeping sabbath durin the Lenten Period, by the devout
doing meditation and by all the benevolent and charitable
Myanmars across the whole country, I might here offer some
canonical advice as a gift.

What is Defilement (kilesa)? It is something that scorches,
that torments, that defiles, that causes sufferings. There are
ten Defilements, as follows 
    (1) Greed, covetousness (loba)
(2) Anger, hatred (dosa)
(3) Delusion, not knowing the truth (moha)
(4) Vanity, with head in the clouds and         feet off the
ground (mana)                            
(5) Wrong concept, wrong concept of nature of things (ditthi)
(6) Cynicism, doubt (vicikiccha)
(7) Sloth, torpor (thina middha)
(8) Mental instability, wavering   (uddhacca)
(9) Remorse (kukucca)
(10) Jealousy, envy (issa macchariya)

Of the ten above defilements, Jealousy and Envy is most
To resent some other person using what belongs to and what
concerns one is known as jealousy (macchariya).

Mortals are more or less guilty of this defilement. Be it more
or be it less, a defilement is still a defilement.

In this connection, envy (issa) is common mostly among those
who do not know the Law.

Just consider the matter which I, U Phyoe the ex-monk,
mentioned at the beginning. The State Law and Order
Restoration Council is striving to build up the country in all
sectors and all aspects. It has successfully organised all
national groups to reunite.

This is where a rejoicing is due, but that person shows no
rejoicing. This is where any possible help is due, but that
person offers no help: indeed the person even tries to
obstruct and impede.

My heart goes out in pity to that person for a deed so vile
and so abominable.

During the current Lenten Period, May all creatures be able to
ponder, practise and proliferate virtuous religious laws, may
they be able to cleanse themselves of the evil laws of
Defilement that are scorching and that are sinful, may those
that are already thickly coated with such defilements be able
to peel them off with attention and awareness, may they be
able to shed their vanity that has put their heads in the
clouds and their feet off the ground, may they be able to
eschew envy and jealousy, and may they be able to repent and
remedy any envy and jealousy had they already committed them.
This is to be my spiritual gift.  
Reproduced from the The New Light of Myanmar, 1 August 1995.

Whether Burma s aging dictator Gen Ne Win is dead or still
alive is a hot issue since popular leader Suu Kyi was released
last month. 

Many speculated no international pressure could have forced
Slorc leaders to free her but only the Ne Win and his former
associates, Sein Lwin, Kyaw Htin and Zaw Win could have given

Some sources in Rangoon reported that Ne Win and present
leaders held a meeting last year. On behalf of Ne Win, Sein
Lwin made analysis on current situation.

Whatever the case, recent news is not good news. Ne Win has
found a new shaman. 

Saya Myaing who was Ne Win's former shaman was as infamous
as Ne Win during the uprising in 1988. But there is no more
Saya Myaing, says a woman who has a vast interest in Ne Win.
(Her plan is to write a book on him when he dies.) 

 Daw Kyi from Moulmein, Mon state is Ne Win's latest shaman
who tells him ways to defeat his foes and  to live another
26 years or so. But Daw Kyi herself cannot read and write
said the sources. (Inside sources)

Media source in Rangoon reported that some persons known to
be  anti-Suu Kyi  are planning to release statements and
articles in  the state-run newspapers and television. 

Private magazines whose editors sought to interview Suu Kyi
have also been threatened with closure, they said.

However, the quickest way to make money and a fortune in
Rangoon and other major cities and villages is selling and
renting  video tapes. Of course, not about triangle-love or
Arnold's Terminator II nor the Batman Forever but the  Aung
San Suu Kyi tape . The footage shot on 11 July includes her
speeches and interviews are selling  throughout the country.
(Inside sources)

While Slorc-media campaign to undermine Suu Kyi s political
popularity coincided with an increasing number of outings by
high-ranking junta figures. 

New education minister U Pan Aung, has been touring and
inspecting schools in Rangoon, telling teachers to keep
students in the classrooms and to stay away from politics. A
student said U Pan Aung told them not to visit  the house 
at University Ave, a reference to Suu Kyi s residence. But a
Rangoon source said many students have already been there. 

Recently, powerful military intelligence chief, Lt Gen Khin
Nyunt, also paid numerous visits to Rangoon University. Khin
Nyunt is chairman of the Myanmar Education Committee and
patron of the Leading Committee for the celebration this
year of Rangoon s university s diamond jubilee. Khin Nyunt
himself is an alumnus of Rangoon University.  After his
visit, photos of Khin Nyunt posing with fellow alumni and
new students at Sagaing, Bago and Inwa halls started
appearing in state-controlled newspapers. But most students
said they did not pose willingly with Khin Nyunt.  We are
afraid that we would be punished if we refused,  said a

Other senior members of the Slorc, including Vice-chairman
Gen Maung Aye and Secretary Two Lt Gen Tin Oo, paid  visits
to upper, central Burma and the Irrawaddy delta regions. 
State-controlled newspapers have been filled with reports on
the activities of the top brass. One Rangoon residents said
Slorc s have been visiting and inspecting the same areas. 

 Now that Daw Suu has been released, they (Slorc leaders)
are busy brushing up their image,  said another resident. 

On July 10, the day Suu Kyi was released from house arrest,
Slorc Chairman  Senior Gen Than Shwe addressed the opening
ceremony of the Management Course No 6 for USDA Executive
Committee members in Rangoon. The USDA is a mass
organisation, which could be transformed into a political

In his speech, Than Shwe said out of nearly two million
candidates who have submitted proposals for membership, 1.67
million have been scrutinized for membership. He also noted
that Tatmadaw or Armed forces confronted all eventualities
because of its love for the nation. 

Two days before the release of  Suu Kyi, the New Light of
Myanmar ran a series of articles on the, Destiny of the
Nation   24. The author, using the penname Nawratha and
believed to be a military intelligence officer, implied that
the Burmese people were delighted to see the meeting between
Suu Kyi and Slorc leaders in 1994.  The masses were
delighted to notice a TV footage of this meeting in
anticipation of a solution to the crisis. 

It described the second meeting, which was held on 28
October 1994, as focusing on  discussions between the Nawata
(Slorc) leaders and Daw Aung San Suu Kyi in a process that
would surely contribute to national reconciliation.  

However, Nawratha said all hopes were dashed when a press
statement from Suu Kyi appeared in Bangkok in January, 1995
shortly after her husband, Dr Michael Aris visited her. 

Nawrata who may hold hatred against Michael Aris, [I hope he
is not in one-side-love with Suu Kyi] also asked,  Perhaps
Mi-chael Aris who keeps roaming about the whle world? Has he
been dominating his wife? and who has been dominating him?
The Nawratha continued,  But, allow Myanmar to be a Myanma
way.  Nawratha also kept to his style/spelling with Su not
Suu. (Inside source)

Suu Kyi might start campaign

Aung San Suu Kyi and her party, NLD might start a campaign
trip to upper Burma a source in Rangoon said, She may go to
Kachin state. It is not known if it is true, why Suu Kyi would
choose to go to Kachin state. Suu Kyi also said she will meet
with well-wishers who come to listen her speeches only on
Saturdays and Sundays.Recently, Kachin leaders Zau Mai and
senior Kachin leaders came down to see Slorc leaders including
Senior Gen Than Shwe who they have never met before. 

Lt Gen Khin Nyunt explained to Kachin leaders the development
of national convention. Sources suggested the Kachins are
attending the upcoming National Convention, which will resume
in October. (BIG)

27 AUGUST 1995

The recent killing of Burmese crewmen, allegedly by their Thai
counterparts, has underlined long-standing problems between
Thailand and Burma over fishing rights. Supradit Kanwanich
investigates the issue.

The possibility of Thai-Burmese conflict is real, and could be
sparked by non-compliance with maritime agreement. Greed and
dishonesty of fishing operators add fuel to the fire.

In one of the latest incidents, three Burmese crewmen of a Thai
fishing boat, JV 44, were beaten to death on August 5, allegedly
by fellow Thai crewmen.

The Thai trawler had been operating in Burmese waters under the
licence of Myanmar Narong Fisheries Industry Co, a joint venture
operation between NCC Asian Fisheries Indistries Co of Thailand
and the Burmese Fisheries Department (see box).

The killing took place after Burmese crewmen told Burmese
authorities that the JV 44 had violated the contract by unloading
its catch, mostly shrimp, to other Thai vissels before it was
inspected at the Burmese port of Mergui. They also alleged that
fishing devices prohibited by Burmese authorities had been used
by the trawler.

Three Thai crewmen were later arrested in connection with the
killing when the JV 44 arrived at the southern Thai province of

According to Burmese who survived the attack, 18 Burmese crewmen
were beaten by Thai counterparts and forced to jump overboard.
Five of them were later plucked from the sea, tied, beaten, and
then thrown into the sea again, according to survivors.

One of the five managed to unite himself and escaped along with
three others who were earlier forced to jump overboard. Three
bodies were later found, but the fate of the rest is still not

Underscoring this sad incident, the Burmese Government ordered
about 150 Thai trawlers licensed under Thai-Burmese joint venture
operations to leave Burmese waters by August 17. Burmese naval
ships were placed on full alert to protect marine resources south
of the Andaman Sea.

Adverse effects: Burmese action is adversely affecting the
fishery industry in ranong, which has an annual 10 billion baht
turnover. The volume of marine catch has declined 3-4 times since
the temporary fishing ban was declared by Burma.

The province has 15 fishmeal plants, 9 ice-making plants, three
processing plants, six cold storages and 50 unloading piers, all
relying on marine catch from Burma.

Fishery-related industries in other southern provinces and in the
Central Plains are also likely to be affected. 

Fishermen in ranong told Sunday Perspective on Friday that they
could only operate in Thai waters and the junction between Thai
and Burmese maritime claims.

They said about 400-500 trawlers and 200 long-tail boats that ply
between Ranong and Victoria Point in Burma are now idle. Before
an entry ban was imposed by the Burmese government, about 800
visitors travelled between Ranong and Victoria Point each day.

About 2,000 fishing boats officially registered in Ranong are
also hard hit by tightened Burmese naval patrol. These boats have
ventured into Burma waters without permission because of rapidly
depleting fisheries stocks in Thai waters.

Apart from depleting marine resources, Thai trawler operators
have faced an acute shortage of Thai labour during the past few
years. To compensate for this, Burmese were hired as fishing
crew. Prior to the August 5 incident, about 20,000 Burmese worked
on Thai trawlers registered in Ranong.

Longstanding problems: When Burma proclaimed a 200-mile exclusive
economic zone (EEZ) in 1977, Thai fishing vessels were put in
constant jeopardy as the maritime claims of both countries

Many fishing operators had to resort to negotiations with the
Burmese government for fishing rights. Still, many of these
trawlers were accused of illegal fishing. this resulted in
arrests made on the fishing crews, seizure of trawlers and in
many cases fighting which resulted in death, injury and others
presumed missing.

In March, the skipper of Thai trawler "K. Sapsiam" shot a Burmese
crewmen and kicked him overboard, according to a report sent to
the Fisheries Department. There was no mention of the reason for
the shooting. When the boat arrived in Ranong, the rest of the
Burmese crew hijacked it to Burma.

In June, two Burmese navy men were wounded in a gun fight with
armed Thai fishermen resisting arrest about 100 kilometres
northwest of Ranong. The incident made Burmese authorities irate.

There have been numerous incidents alleged by both sides during
the past several years. Yet, no preventive measures were taken
until the sad episode on August 5.

Hunting grounds:  The fishing gold mine for Thai fishermen is the
waters around thousands of islands off the Burmese ports of Tavoy
and Mergui. In these areas, about 30-50 miles inside Burma's EEZ,
there are a lot of valuable fish.

Besides traditional fishing methods, some Thai fishermen have
adopted a devastating technique of "dynamiting" which kills all
seizes of fish and destroys breeding and feeding habitats od all
marine life.

These "dynamite boats" hire sea gypsies to dive to the sea bed
and plant explosives. They are well-versed in making a home-made
bomb, which is a mixture of fertiliser (40-0-0 formular) and
diesel fuel contained in a clay pot. Dynamite is installed around
the blasting cap-

These fishermen like to dynamite fish around a cluster of Burmese
islands north of Ranong. This makes it easier to hide themselves
from the Burmese coast guards.

Undoubtedly, Burmese authorities deal harshly with these
unscrupulous fishermen. Boats designed for fish dynamiting are
easily recognised because they are normally manned by fewer than
10 men, and are equipped with fish-finding gear and a radio
transmitter. When met with these fish bombers, Burmese soldiers
will "shoot to kill".

Call for sincerity: Mr Karin Thongpatchote, president of ONK
Mining and Construction Co, which entered into a 30-year fishing
joint venture with the Burmese Fisheries Department in March this
year, said thew Thai Government must show its sincerity by taking
legal action against those responsible for the killing of the
three Burmese crewmen on August 5.

He says the incident might have stemmed from personal dispute.
The company which owns the trawler should pay compensation to
families of the victims.

he believes Deputy Prime Minister Chavalit Yongchaiyudh's forth-
coming trip to Burma will lead to better understanding between
the two countries.

Apart from fishing problems, Burmese authorities are still
unhappy about land reclamation in the Moei River at Tak's Mae Sot
District, where construction of the Friendship Bridge has been

Burma's decision to halt fishing by licensed Thai companies has
affected ONK's operations and projects, including construction of
four mother ships of 5,700-ton gross each and 200 steel trawlers
of 610-ton gross each in Europe. His co-investors in Japan, South
Korea, Taiwan, New Zealand and the US are worried about a halt on
fishing, karin said.

Karin, however, believes the Burmese government made the right
decision. Because every Thai fishing trawler has Burmese crew,
it's better to let the situation cool down before Thai and
Burmese crewmen work together again.

The temporary suspension of fishing rights would also enable
authorities to investigate and seize trawlers which have operated
illegally under the guise of licensed boats. There are about 100
of these "ghost boats" which are refurnished to look exactly like
real licensed boats.

Long-term solution: Dr Saran Petpiroon, an economist of the
Fisheries Department said there must be better cooperation
between Thai and Burmese officials in tackling long-standing

So far, contracts made between Thai fishing companies and Burmese
authorities are not acknowledged by the Thai Fisheries Depart

If Thai authorities were told by Burmese counterparts about Thai
companies wishing to enter joint venture ioperations, they could
screen out those with bad records, said Dr Saran.

Sustainable development must also be pursued. "Thai trawlers go
into Burmese waters because our marine resources are scarce,
while Burma has to protect them," he said.

When a Thai trrawler fails to honoura contract, it affects
everyone involved in the fishery industry. It's high time both
countries adopted a new policy and approach to end existing
problems, said Dr Saran. They could also try joint development
that satisfies the fundamental interests of all parties. (BP)

27 AUGUST 1995

Five Thai companies have entered into joint venture agreements
with the Burmese Government to undertake fisheries projects. They

1. ONK Mining and Construction Co. It signed a contract with the
Fisheries Department of Burma in March this year to establish
Myanmar ONK Fisheries Joint Venture with a resgistered capital of
US$421 million.

The operation involves a fishing concession in Burmese waters
with 300 trawlers of 150-gross ton size, an ice-making plant of
400-tons capacity per day, a cold storage of 1,000-tons capacity,
a canned food factory of 180,000-cans-per-day, fishmeal plant of
30-ton capacity per day and 5,000-arce shrimp farming. The Thai
cpmpany holds 49 per cent of equities, and the Burmese 51 per

2. NCC Asian Fisheries Industries Co. It signed a contract with
the Fisheries Department of Burma in March to establish Myanmar
narong Fisheries Industry Co. The operation involves fishing,
cold storage, ice making, canned food, fishmeal, marketing in
fish and shrimp products, and shrimp farming in Myeik. The Thai
side holds 60 per cent, and the Burmese 40 per cent.

3. PP Bansuay Co (a joint-venture company of bansuay construction
Co and International Fisheries Industry Co). It signed a contract
with the Fishries Department of Burma in June to form Myanmar PP
Fishery Industries Co to run a US$7.35 million fishery project.

4. TBE Co. It signed a contract with Myanmar Fisheries Enterprise
in 1993 to form General Fisheries Co under the privileges
provided by Burmese foreign investment law.

5. Hinthar Minn Co. It signed a contract with Myanmar Fisheries
Enterprise in 1993 to set up Hunsawaddy Fisheries Co under
privileges provided by Burmese foreign investment law.

Under the terms of joint venture operations, Thai trawlers must
operate in designated areas under Burmese laws and regulations.

They cannot unload the catch before it has been inspected at
designated Burmese ports. At least five Burmese must be among the
fishing crew in a trawler, and fishing is limited to 25 days a month.

Thai trawlers must pay 150,000-250,000 baht in annual fees to
joint venture companies in addition to 30,000-50,000 baht in
monthly fees when fishing in Burmese waters. The catch must be
inspected to estimate the price, and commission will be deducted
before the catch is transported to Thailand. (BP)