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The BurmaNet News, November 18, 199

------------------------ BurmaNet ------------------------          
"Appropriate Information Technologies, Practical Strategies"          
The BurmaNet News: November 18, 1997             
Issue #870



INFORMATION SHEET No.A-0213(I) 		 Date.17-11-97
(1)			                       Union of Myanmar 
                          State Peace and Development Council
                                  (Notification No 2/97)
                        2nd Waning of Tazaungmon, 1359 ME
                                    (16th November 1997)

Appointment of Deputy Ministers
		The State Peace and Development Council has appointed the 
following persons Deputy Ministers of the Ministers shown as under:-

1. Brig-Gen Khin Maung		Ministry of Agriculture and Irrigation
2.	U Ohn Myint		Ministry of Agriculture and Irrigation
3.	Brig-Gen Thein Tun	Ministry of Industry-1
4.	Col Than Zin		Ministry of Industry-1
5.	U Thein Tun		Ministry of Industry-2
6.	U Nyunt Swe		Ministry of Foreign Affairs
7.	Thura U Thaung Lwin	Ministry of Rail Transportation
8.	Brig-Gen Zaw Tun	Ministry of National Planning and 
				  Economic Development
9.	Brig-Gen Kyaw Myint	Ministry of Transport
10.	U Maung Aung		Ministry of Immigration and Population
11.	U Tin Tun		Ministry of Energy
12.	Dr Than Nyunt		Ministry of Education
13.	Brig-Gen Soe Win Maung		Ministry of Education
14.	Dr Mya Oo		Ministry of Health
15.	Brig-Gen Myo Tint	Ministry of Commerce
16.	Col Kyaw Shwe		Ministry of Commerce
17.	Brig-Gen Than Tun	Ministry of Finance and Revenue
18.	U Kyaw Aye		Ministry of Labour
19.	Brig-Gen Thura Aye Myint	Ministry of Construction
20.	U Soe Nyunt		Ministry of Culture
21.	U Thein Sein		Ministry of Information
22.	Brig-Gen Aung Thein	Ministry of Information
23.	U Kyaw Tin		Ministry for Progress of Border 
		Areas and National Races and Development Affairs
24.	U Aung Thein		Ministry of Livestock and Fisheries
25.	Brig-Gen Maung Maung	Ministry of Electric Power
26.	U Aung Khin		Ministry of Religious Affairs
27.	Brig-Gen Soe Myint	Ministry of Forestry
28.	Col Thaik Tun		Ministry of Forestry
29.	Brig-Gen Thura Myint Maung	 Ministry of Home Affairs
30.	Brig-Gen Aye Myint Kyu		Ministry of Hotels and Tourism
31.	U Hlaing Win		Ministry of Mines
32.	U Myint Thein		Ministry of Mines
33.	Brig-Gen Maung Kyi	Ministry of Social Welfare, Relief and
By order
Signed-Khin Nyunt
State Peace and Development Council

INFORMATION SHEET No.A-0214(I/L)		 Date.17-11-97
A Series of Activities of Mrs. Aris
		The Central Executive Meeting of the NLD was held at Daw Su Kyi's
residence from 9:20 am to 11:30 am on 10 November and Daw Su Kyi met Mrs.
Whiting Shelley Elizabeth, First Secretary of the Bangkok-based Canadian
Embassy at her residence from 4:15 pm to 5 pm the same day.
		Daw Su Kyi went to the German Ambassador's residence and met Dr. Hams
Barnar, Director of the Asian Bureau, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Federal
Republic of Germany from 11 am to 2:35 pm on 12 November. She met Resident
Representative of UNICEF Mr. Juan R. Aguilar and Miss Pratima Kale at her
residence from 5 pm to 6:50 pm the same day.
		She went to the residence of U Tin Oo from 7:15 pm to 7:35 pm on 13 November.
		She went to the residence of U Lwin from 2:35 pm to 2:40 pm and that of
French Ambassador at 3 pm to 4:50 pm on 14 November.

INFORMATION SHEET No.A-0212(I)	            Date.16-11-97
(1) Commander-in-Chief of Indonesia and Wife Conclude Goodwill Visit

		Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of the Republic of Indonesia
General Feisal Tanjung and wife and party left Yangon by special flight at
10 am on 15 November. They were seen off at Yangon International Airport by
Vice-Chairman of the State Peace and Development Council Deputy
Commander-in-Chief of Defence Services Commander-in-Chief (Army) General
Maung Aye and wife and officials concerned.
                     OFFICE CALLS IN YANGON ON 15 NOVEMBER

(A)		Chairman of the State Peace and Development Council 
Commander-in-Chief of Defence Services Senior General Than Shwe received
Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of the Republic of Indonesia General
Feisal Tanjung and party at Dagon Yeiktha of the Ministry of Defence.

(B)		Secretary-1 of the State Peace and Development Council Lt-Gen Khin
Nyunt received William M Scholl of the Centre for Strategic and
International Studies Department of the United States and Mr Ernest H Preeg
of the International Economics Department, a former ambassador, at Dagon
Yeiktha of the Ministry of Defence.

November 17, 1997
  Press Release
  Date: November 17, 1997
  Dr. Min Soe Lin, an elected member of parliament and general secretary of
the banned Mon National League for Democracy (MNLD), has been arrested by
Burma's military regime for criticizing the junta.
  He was detained on November 6 by the then State Law and Order Restoration
Council (SLORC) under Article 5 (j) of the Emergency Provision Act. The
ABSDF has learnt that Dr. Min Soe Lin, 40, was arrested for his role in
organising celebrations for this year's 50th Mon National Day on February
23, which the SLORC had refused to allow go ahead.
  Dr. Min Soe Lin was arrested in Mudon, Mon State, but it is not known
where he has been taken or under what conditions he is being held.
  Dr. Min Soe Lin was elected by various Mon organizations as general
secretary of the Mon State Commission for the Golden Jubilee Celebration of
Mon National Day. In this role, he repeatedly sought permission to hold the
celebration in Moulmein, the capital of Mon State. However, the Military
Intelligence Service (5) based in Moulmein, refused to give its consent for
the celebration, although permission had been granted in previous years. 
  Finally, after cancelling the arrangements in Moulmein, the celebration
was held near Kanni at the source of the Ye River in an area under the
control of the New Mon State Party (NMSP). However, the military considered
this an act of defiance and it was widely known that Dr. Min Soe Lin was
subsequently placed on the military's most wanted list.
  Dr. Min Soe Lin graduated from the Rangoon Institute of Medicine (2) in
1985. While he was studying at the institute he was an executive member of
the Rangoon Universities' Mon Culture and Literature Association, and
secretary of the association's Buddhist section. 
  He joined the Mon National League for Democracy when it was formed after
the 1988 uprising. He was one of five successful MNLD candidates in the 1990
election, winning the seat of Ye (1) in Mon State. The SLORC banned the MNLD
on 19 March, 1992, under order No. 8/92.
  Central Committee
  All Burma Students' Democratic Front
  For more information please call 01-923 1687 or 01-654 4984.


November 17, 1997

Due to the inaccessibility of the refugees at Baw Ner Ta, Thay Pu Law Sue,
and Kwee Lei Taw,  details of the events from the past few days are
difficult to verify.  However, these reports reflect what is known at this
time.  When new information is presented, the reports are updated.  The
following report has been confirmed, unless otherwise noted.

Six confirmed deaths have been reported at Thay Pu Law Sue.  They are
recorded as a three day old baby, and five men.  Yesterday's report stated
that the man with the abdominal wound died.  The remaining four deaths
occurred when the Thai soldiers forcibly removed them from the crowd of
refugees.  They had refused to move to the new site.  These four men were
tied up and severely beaten in front of the other refugees.  After the
refugees were removed from the area, three of the men were summarily
executed.  The fourth man was untied, then told by the soldiers to run away.
As the man sprinted away, he was 
shot dead by the Thai soldiers.   The four men are:
	1) Saw Plah Wah, age 45, from Thu May Leh village
	2) Saw Suh Doh Kee, age 28, from Thee Kweh village
	3) Saw Sah K'Paw Htoo, age 30, from Kah Lee Kee village
	4) The identity of the man shot while fleeing is presently unknown.

An unconfirmed report claims that an additional four men who attempted to
escape from the forced relocation were shot.  It is not certain if they were
injured or killed.

When the Thai soldiers entered Thay Pu Law Sue, it is estimated that they
fired 10 M79 shells and 200 rounds of M16 rifles.  One woman was injured by
splinters from the M79 in her hand and thigh.  The mother of the baby which
died is now in shock.

The refugees at No Po refugee camp saw the fire from the burning shelters at
Thay Pu Law Sue.  Although they tried to reach this area to assist, the Thai
authorities refused to allow them to go.  The Thai soldiers are now
searching for any refugees which escaped from Thay Pu Law Sue during the
forced relocation.  It is alleged that the soldiers have been given orders
to shoot to kill if these refugees are seen in the jungle.

Refugees from No Po claim that if they are apprehended outside of the camp,
they are tortured and made to perform forced labor in the sun.  

On November 16, four  embassy officials arrived at No Po to investigate the
situation.  They were told that the refugees had already been settled in Baw
Ner Ta.  

The Baw Ner Ta refugees do not have food, medicine or medics, clothes,
blankets, or mosquito nets.  No food has been permitted to be sent.  An AMI
trained medic from No Po requested  permission from the Thai authorities to
assist with providing needed medical care.  Permission has not yet been
granted.  The No Po camp leader also requested permission to visit Baw Ner
Ta to view the situation, but he has been denied access.  

On November 15, after forcibly removing the refugees from Thay Pu Law Sue,
Lieutenant Narochar of the 4th Battalion of the 3rd Army along with 100
soldiers arrived at Kwee Ler Taw temporary camp.  The refugees were
immediately ordered to pack their belongings.  Some refugees were physically
abused by fists and feet.  Those who attempted to escape were tied up.  The
temporary structures erected by the refugees were burnt down.  The soldiers
then fired their weapons into the air.  The refugees were divided into three 
groups, each group was individually herded by the Thai soldiers to Baw Ner Ta. 

This report will be updated as new confirmed information is available

[related note from separate posting]
- - - - - - - - - - 

Burmese Relief Center--Japan urges that respectful letters deploring these
unfortunate killings and appealing for increased protection of Burmese
asylum seekers be written immediately to:

the new Prime Minister of Thailand, 
Prime Minister Chuan Leekpai
c/o the Government Spokesman:  <govspkmn@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>

or via air mail:

PM Chuan Leekpai
Office of the Prime Minister
Government House
Nakhon Pathom Rd.
Bangkok, 10300, Thailand

The King of Thailand, HM King Bhumibol Adulyadej
c/o His Royal Secretary
Office of the King
Bangkok, Thailand
Fax: + 66-2-280-0557
Fax: +66-2-224-3259

Please forward copies of your letters to:



November 17, 1997


Ban Don Yang
The population of this small camp north of Sangklaburi town is now stable at
1,458.  With the recent change of government in Bangkok it is now hoped that
they will be allowed to start building a camp school [see below, Tham Hin].

In an attempt to improve nutrition, especially to increase the consumption
of fresh vegetables, some refugees had begun to plant 'kitchen gardens' -
some simply in tins around their houses.  Recently it was reported that Thai
militia and 9th Division army personnel assigned to the camp physically tore
up these little plots.

Htee Wah Doh
This is a population of internally displaced persons (IDPs) stuck between
the Mon, in their ceasefire area around Halochanee, and the SLORC troops.
The population of 3,214 people is ethnic Karen, displaced by the current
offensive against the Karen National Union (KNU).  The population has been
increasing In the last month alone, around 725 new arrivals came to this
remote spot.

NGO assistance is not officially allowed and access is extremely difficult.
The presence of so many ethnic Karen in the area is now causing problems
between the New Mon State Party (NMSP) and the SLORC.  The SLORC allege that
the Karen group includes KNU officials.  The authorities in the area still
have refused to allow this group to cross to Thailand and enter the refugee
camp at Ban Don Yang.  Because entry is barred, increasing numbers of IDPs
are arriving secretly at Sangklaburi town.  It is difficult to deliver
assistance to this group because the refugees are scattered and unregistered.

IDPs at the borderline
1. Recently it was reported that around 900 IDPs belonging to the Te Lah Koo
sect had arrived across the Thai border at a remote location north of
Sangklaburi, in Umphang district.  The Te Lah Koo are a small sect of Karen
people who are animist, distinguishable from other Karen due to their
distinctive style of dress and the top knot of hair worn by men.  The Te Lah
Koo language is different to Pwo and Sgaw Karen.  Largely confined to this
remote spot on the border, the Te Lah Koo have traditionally shunned
association with any political group. 
Members of the group which recently arrived in Thailand are in poor health.
They could no longer stay in Burma because SLORC troops occupied their land
and harassed them.  The group's location on the Thai border is not well
served by roads, therefore it is difficult to provide assistance.

2. A second group of IDPs are still north of Kanchanaburi, approximately 3-4
hours north of Bongti village.  They are at a site known locally as Nya Pla
Kee.  These villagers came from Hsa Mu Taw and Seiku villages, close to
Mytta, at the northernmost extremity of the Tenasserim River [see last
update 16.10.97].

They are still on the Burma-side of the border after, being refused accesss
by the Thai 9th Division army on the 13th of October, 1997.  There are 100
people there.  They are in a remote place which is difficult to reach.  NGOs
do not have official permission to deliver assistance to the site.


Tham Hin
The population is now 7,658, an increase of 12 since last month.  The main
news is that the Ministry of the Interior has given approval for the
construction of schools in the camp.  Moves will now be made to take in
building materials as quickly as possible and start lessons soon.  There are
2,220 pupils in the camp waiting for school to start.  More than 900 are 5-6
year-olds ready for kindergarten classes.

NGOs have agreed to consider paying the teachers a small allowance of 2,000
baht per year.

IDPs at the borderline
On 2.11.97 400 new arrivals reportedly arrived at the borderline just west
of Htam Hin camp, at a point known as Meh Pya Kee.  The new arrivals came
from the area west of the main Tenasserim river - the Paw Klo river valley,
where many large Karen villages are located.  The new arrivals endured a
journey lasting 3 - 4 weeks, all the while weaving and zig-zagging to avoid
the SLORC troops in the forest.

The arrivals told a uniform tale of systematic destruction of food stocks by
the SLORC soldiers, presumably in an attempt to wipe out any last resistance
by KNU forces.

By 6.11.97 many people from this group spontaneously fled into Thai
territory and camped at the Border Patrol Police checkpoint, adjacent to the
border.  They fled when they heard that SLORC troops were arriving to the
north and north-west of their position at Meh Pya Kee.  The authorities were
informed and they have now been given permission to remain.  For security
they have been moved down to the former Bo Wi refugee camp site.  Permission
has been given by the authorities for NGOs to provide medical services there.

It is widely expected that more people will arrive from the Paw Klo river
area; it seems that villagers no longer have enough to eat and are unable to
survive there.  [Paw Klo is marked on official maps of Burma as Banchaung


Huay Satu
The population of this group of IDPs on the Burma-side of the border
adjacent to Hua Hin, is now stable at 928.  Official permission still has
not been given for NGO assistance in the area.

The population is stable at 276 persons, in a well-located camp about 20 km
inside Thailand.  Being so far south means that NGOs which provide
assistance must make a long journey.


November 17, 1997

THE United Nations yesterday criticised Burma's record on human rights,
pointing to continuing extra-judicial activities and the absence of steps
towards a democratic government.

An interim report by the Special Rapporteur of the Commission on Human
Rights, Rajsoomer Lallah, said the situation in Burma has not changed.

Violations continue unabated with the forced relocation of minorities,
resulting in an influx of refugees to neighbouring countries. Severe
restrictions on freedom of expression continue, and on the movements of
opposition party leader Aung San Suu Kyi, according to the report, which was
released by the UN secretary-general yesterday.

It also noted that the violation of children's rights continue.
Lallah has been repeatedly been refused permission to enter Burma by the
Rangoon authorities to obtain reformation firsthand for this report - even
though the ruling junta has indicated that the UN special rapporteur would
be allowed to enter.


November 15, 1997  AFP (slightly abridged)

BRUSSELS - The European Union will attempt to "pick up the pieces" of its
troubled relationship with Southeast Asia before the end of this year,
diplomats said after tensions over Burma emerged into the open. 
But at the same time, the sources acknowledged real uncertainty about how to
go about getting the bloc's cooperation with the Association of Southeast
Asian Nations (Asean) back on track.

"Contacts are quite chilly at the moment and it will probably be like that
for a few weeks," said an official with the EU's Luxembourg presidency. "But
quite soon we will have to have a go at picking up the pieces."

The diplomat's comments followed confirmation on Wednesday that the annual
EU-Asean Joint Cooperation Council (JCC) had been postponed indefinitely
after the two blocs failed to reach an agreement on the participation of
officials representing Burma's military junta.

Asean, which admitted Burma in July in the face of fierce EU and US
opposition, wanted the country to have full observer status at the talks.
This was rejected as unacceptable by the EU, which has a ban on high-level
contacts with the Burmese regime.

EU officials, who admit to having been surprised by the firmness of the
Asean stance, said they would not seek to escalate the row.

But they also insisted they would not give any further ground on Burma,
making it difficult to see how a face-saving compromise that will allow the
JCC to be rescheduled early next year will be struck.

"This will do real damage," the Luxembourg diplomat said. "It chills our
relationship and shows we are not capable of handling political issues in a
mature and discreet way."

The EU is anxious to ensure that the row with Asean does not spill over into
the broader Asia-Europe Meeting (Asem), a forum which includes Japan, Korea
and China, as well as the original Asean states.

But they acknowledge that this week's events do not augur well for the
prospects of the Asem summit due to take place in London in April going ahead.

Associated Press reports from Bangkok: A top EU official said yesterday it
was "a pity" that the group had to postpone a meeting with Asian countries
because of a disagreement over Burma, but it was the right decision. 

November 15, 1997 (slightly abridged)
Anuraj Manibhandu and Nussara Sawatsawang

A senior European official yesterday stressed the need for a show of good
will before a new timetable could be set for talks between the European
Union and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations. 
"We have parliamentary democracy in all our countries and you have to
respect the decisions in our parliaments," Ms Gradin added referring to
continued debate in European parliaments on Burma's poor record on human
rights and democracy. 

Ms Gradin did  not think the postponement would seriously harm relations
between the two groupings, saying Europe was accustomed to differences, for
instance over Turkey.

But a senior Thai official predicted that the dispute between Asean and the
EU over Burma  would also affect the wider but fledgling framework, known as
the Asia-Europe Meeting (Asem), that Asean hoped would help counterbalance
relations with the United States and Japan.

Michel Caillouet, head of the European Commission delegation to Thailand,
maintained that the postponement came after the EU had made a "big effort"
by offering Burma "passive presence" in the talks.

Asean, according to Mr Caillouet had insisted on Burma sitting at the same
table, in alphabetical order with other Asean member states.

He also rejected the argument that Burma should be admitted into the
discussion because the basic document is for so-called "bloc-to-bloc"

The 1980 Asean-EU agreement, blocked from renegotiation by the protracted
problem between  Indonesia and Portugal over East Timor, is "between the
European Union and countries of Asean, not with Asean (as a group)", Mr
Caillouet said.


November 24, 1997

Letters in Response to The Nation article, October 20, "Singapore's 
Blood Money" by Bernstein and Kean. 
Both response letters published in The Nation, November 24, 1997

[BurmaNet Editor's Note: The article also appeared in BurmaNet, Issue # 840,
October 9, 1997]

Washington, D.C.

The Editor
The Nation

In "Singapore's Blood Money" (Oct. 20), Dennis Bernstein and Leslie Kean
alleged that the Singaporean government is engaging in joint business
ventures with drug lords in Myanmar.  Bernstein and Kean are recycling old
allegations made by an Australian television station, Special Broadcasting
Service (SBS), in October 1996.  In November 1996 the Government had
rebutted these allegations.  It pointed out that the Government of Singapore
Investment Corporation was a passive investor in the Myanmar Fund, and was
not involved in the investment decisions of the fund.  Other investors
included Air Liquids International and beneficial interests held by nominee
companies such as Coutts & Co. (an old British bank) and Swiss Bank Corporation.

The statement also explained that GIC kept securities with Morgan Guaranty
Trust Co. because this was the common practice of most investment
corporations.  There is nothing sinister or secret about this investment,
which had been publicly disclosed.

As for opposition leader Dr. Chee Soon Juan's criticism, the Government had
invited him to get his party to move a motion in Parliament calling for a
Commission of Inquiry.  There would be a full debate, and the Government
would support the motion.  Dr. Chee could then bring evidence to the
Commission to prove that the Government had acted immorally and colluded
with drug traffickers by investing in the Myanmar Fund.  Dr. Chee declined
to do so.

In August 1997, a majority of other shareholders voted in favor of winding
up the Myanmar Fund.  As a passive investor, GIC supported the decision. 

Jean Tan
First Secretary
Singapore Embassy


Mill Valley, Calif.

The Singapore government's response again confirms the fact that the
government, through  the GIC and the Myanmar Fund, was doing business with
legendary drug trafficker Lo Hsing Han of Burma. Indeed, the rush in August
to shut down the Myanmar Fund--only one aspect of a complicated web of
investments with Lo and Burma's narco-dictatorship--is a clear indication
that something is very wrong. (As we noted in our article, Lo and his
company Asia World are under investigation by narcotics officials in several

Beyond this, Jean Tan's specific criticisms do not address the substance of
our article. Nowhere did we say that the GIC's use of Morgan Guaranty Trust
Co. as a custodian was "sinister or secret."  The newsworthy point is that a
major U.S. financial institution had business ties to a known heroin dealer.

Furthermore, Tan's assertion that the GIC was merely a "passive investor" is
belied by the fund's own documents, one of which says that the GIC is a
"core shareholder" and as such has a representative on the investment
committee of the fund. "The committee will determine whether investment
proposals are viable and whether they should be approved for investment by
the Fund" says the 1994 document.   (As manager of the GIC since 1991, Eddie
Taw Cheng Kong was the GIC representative on the fund investment committee
until very recently.  Taw was sentenced in May to nine years in jail and a
$2.4 million fine for accepting bribes from companies whose shares were
purchased by the GIC.)

Tan's statement on Dr. Chee Soon Juan's  refusal to set up a commission is
misleading.  Dr. Chee was not a member of Parliament and thus would have
been excluded from the commission. His colleagues in Parliament were afraid
of lawsuits and other repercussions. Dr. Chee had already been the target of
a government defamation law suit  and was forced to sell his house and
borrow heavily to avoid bankruptcy.  Amnesty International says that
Singapore's leaders are systematically  "resorting to defamation suits as a
politically-motivated tactic to silence critical views and curb opposition

Chee still had the courage to speak out, but his questions (in a letter to
the Prime Minister and The Straits Times) remain unanswered by the ruling
elite: Is Lo Hsing Han allowed to move freely in and out of Singapore, for
example? Has the government investigated the background of Lo's son Steven
Law, who has been denied a U.S. visa on suspicion of drug  trafficking? Will
the government state clearly that Burma's junta is not helping or turning a
blind eye to drug trafficking?

Although the Myanmar Fund is now undergoing  liquidation,  these investments
represented only a small part of Singapore's total investment in Burma. The
US government has reported that more than half of Singapore's $1
billion-plus investment in Burma is tied to Lo Hsing Han and his family.

Dennis Bernstein and Leslie Kean

Two Further Notes:  The Kerry Investment Management reports that the
Myanmar Fund "was formally placed into Liquidation on 29th August 1997.

In response to the question:  Is there any other Fund that has taken its
place to continue Singapore's investments in Burma?  The Singapore Embassy
in the US responds, "No other Fund has been set up to replace the Myanmar


November 12, 1997


The Shan States Army (Southern), hitherto the Shan United Revolutionary
Army, is on the move again after a rainy season hiatus.

The campaign began with the raid on a Slorc camp at Khurh Ong-Oay village,
Kard phwee circle, MongKung township, Loilem district on 9 November. The SSA
source reports they captured 12 assorted weapons and a lot of ammunitions there.

The SSA units in three columns were also persuading the Slorc-formed
"Anti-Insurgency Militia Units" to rejoin the ranks of the resistance. The
three columns are Surh Khan Fa (commanded by Major Mongzern), Khunsang
Tonhoong (commanded by Lt-Col. Pomar) and Kornzurng (commanded by Major
Sangwi). So far, the troops have managed to persuade 300 militiamen in the
area with 160 weapons to return to the fold.

At the same time, Sao Yordserk, the Commander of the SSA (Southern), has
called for voluntary contributions from patriotic compatriots both at home
and abroad in order to buy warm clothing and blankets for the coming cold
Contributions from abroad are requested to be sent to 
        P.O. Box 15, Nonghoi P.O
        Chiangmai, 50007, THAILAND
or      A/C No. 423-036308-9 , Changkhlarn Branch, Bangkok Bank,


Meanwhile, the situation on the checkpoint between Mongton township (Shan
State) and Chiangdao District (Thailand) has gone from bad to worse when on
8 November, a Thai national flag was seen flying on a pole in Namyoom
village in Mongton township just across from Nawngook village in Chiangdao.
No one seemed to know who put it there in the first place.

The border checkpoint has been closed when the boundary stone between the
two countries vanished mysteriously late last month.

November 16, 1997

The boundary stone, the disappearance of which had been the center of
tension between Thailand and Slorc (now renamed SPDC) for two weeks , has
been recovered, sources from Chiangdao District, Chiangmai Province
reported.  It was found in the lake at Nong-ook, the border village of Chiangdao
District. The Thais immediately returned it to its original site between the
two countries, and normal relations has been resumed, said the source.
Who's the culprit, then? Slorc or Thai officials? On a third party? But the
Thai source of S.H.A.N. is reluctant to name names. Thus, the mystery continues.


November 16, 1997
>From Sukham Nanda
MOREH, Nov 15: Moreh residents have always been at the receiving end 
whenever an untoward incident occurs either on the Imphal- Moreh road or at 
the border township itself.
It has now been a common feature that the Myanmarese authority will seal the 
border when something happens at Moreh. Same is the case with Imphal- 
Moreh road. Any trouble on this road means a blockade. And the Moreh 
residents, the hub of trading on the border bear the brunt of all these. 
As expected the poor Meiteis (Manipuri) and Muslims are the worst sufferers. 
Members of other communities like Tamils, Punjabis, most of whom are 
prominent traders and Marawaris can stockpile daily essentials to last many 
Similarly Kukis, majority settlers in Moreh seem to be hardly affected 
by a blockade or sealing of the border. This is despite the fact that about 80 
per cent of the community are either laborers or farmers.
Needless to say that any ban or blockade results in prices of all essential 
commodities skyrocketing and the common men continue to suffer for no
fault of theirs. 
What is the government doing all the while? To put it simply it has completely 
neglected the hapless people. As a matter of fact the district
administration does 
not seem to care two hoots to these problems.
The resident complained that the local FCS office has not been able to 
distribute PDS items regularly. 
They also charged that the local agents are acting in connivance with the 
officials, to aggravate the situation further. In short they are given a
free hand 
with regard to fixing of prices. 
Talking about closure of the border trade officials at Moreh said their 
counterparts in Myanmar have never given prior notice to them. 
Another problem they said is that the staff of the local treasury office
is noted for their irregularity in attending office. They seem to take
interest only in drawing the monthly salary, they charged.
Moreh inhabitants, however,are satisfied with the functioning of the local 
police, customs and taxation departments. In the wake of recent happenings 
at Moreh and Imphal- Moreh road security measures have been beefed up.      

November 17, 1997
Cheewin Sattha

Mae Hong Son --A recent attack on the house of a Thai police officer by
armed Karens is believed to have stemmed from a conflict of interest over
illegal logging business along the Thai-Burmese border, according to a
police source.

A group of 10 armed Karens crossed the border early Saturday morning to raid
the house of Senior Sgt-Mai Suthin Kosarai in Ban Sao Hin of Mae Sariang
district. The officer was attacked with a knife and suffered a severe cut in
his left arm.

The armed intruders exchanged gunfire with local police for about ten
minutes before retreating to Burma.

A senior police officer who spoke on condition of anonymity said the house
which was raided was the meeting venue of Thai wood traders and Karens,
adding that the latter were hired to cut trees in Salween wildlife sanctuary
and other Burmese forests.


November 16, 1997

A total of 21 Karen villagers walked free yesterday following a recent court
acquittal clearing them of crimes, including murder, armed robbery and arson.

However, one of the inmates, a 16year-old died in prison from typhoid as he
was being sent to hospital for treatment. They were cleared of all charges
after five years of detention.

The court, chaired. by Anocha Chewitsophon, decided to free all the suspects
on the grounds that the prosecution could not supply evidence to support the
charges against them.

A total of 22 Karen villagers were arrested in November 1992 and charged
with murder, arson and armed robbery in connection with an incident
affecting a forest protection office in Mae Chan.

They were also accused of attacking a Border Patrol Police base in Mae Chan
and killing four police officers in the attack, and setting government
office buildings on fire.

All but one denied the charges levelled against them. One suspect admitted
to killing a villager but denied the rest of the charges.

The acquittal ruling came last month but the villagers were detained after
the prosecution lodged an appeal. They were freed yesterday since the
prosecution failed to submit evidence within the period of limitation statute.
Vinij Lamlue, one of the lawyers, said the villagers deserve compensation
for the five years they spent in j 11 and lost opportunities.

"They deserve something on a humanitarian ground," he said.


November 11, 1997 [translated from Burmese]

Lt. Gen. Myint Aung, Minister of Agriculture and Irrigation, and Lt.
Gen. Tun Kyi, Minister of Commerce, accompanied by responsible officials
inspected agricultural activities in Eastern Pegu Division today.  [passage
A ceremony to explain the 1997-98 new paddy purchasing system by
tender to rice traders and entrepreneurs was held at the Thirihantha Hall
in Pegu at 0800 today.  Commerce Minister Lt. Gen. Tun Kyi attended the
ceremony and presented explanations.
He said beginning from the 1997-98 fiscal year paddy would not be
purchased directly from the farmers as previously practiced but will be
purchased by tender system instead.  He mentioned the new practice would
lessen the dealings with farmers and the opportunities for corruption.  Lt.
Gen. Tun Kyi explained buying paddy at paddy purchasing depots would not be
practiced anymore but instead the new system would be to buy paddy by
tender at warehouses and new purchasing centers.   He spoke of the need to
reorganize paddy purchasing, storage, rice milling, sale, and trading
activities.  He then explained in detail paddy purchasing matters and
regulations regarding the tender system with rice entrepreneurs and
answered questions raised by them.