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BurmaNet News: November 6, 2000

______________ THE BURMANET NEWS ______________
        An on-line newspaper covering Burma 
________November 6, 2000   Issue # 1656__________

NOTED IN PASSING: ?Myanmar has also started with internet E-mail 
services for the general public with initial users of only 2,500 and a 
plan is underway to extend the number of such users.?   See Xinhua: Over 
249,000 Telephones in Operation in Myanmar

*AP: Myanmar troops extend offensive against Karen rebels 
*Karen National Union: Burma Army Destroyed IDPs Crops
*Xinhua: Myanmar Restarts New Satellite Town Project 
*Xinhua: Over 249,000 Telephones in Operation in Myanmar 
*The Guardian (London): 'It was a risk but it paid off'?James Mawdsley
*DVB: Military intelligence arrests four students for staging protest 

*Kyodo: ILO May Still Punish Myanmar Despite Ban on Forced Labor 
*South China Morning Post: Exasperated UN observer leaves big shoes to 
*New Straits Times (Malaysia): Myanmar pledges support for Malaysia

*Xinhua: Foreign Investment in Myanmar Encouraging at Start of 2000-2001 

*Bangkok Post: Wa moving to saturate Thai market; Avalanche of speed 
pills predicted 

OTHER _______
*AP: Myanmar coach says he has a secret strategy against Thailand 

The BurmaNet News is viewable online at:

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AP: Myanmar troops extend offensive against Karen rebels 

Nov 6, 2000

MAE SOT, Thailand (AP) _ Myanmar government soldiers have extended their 
offensive against Karen ethnic rebels, attacking another guerrilla 
stronghold on Sunday, rebel officials and Thai villagers said. 

 Five hundred government troops attacked the Karen National Union base 
at Waw Lay Khee, about 340 kilometers (212 miles) northwest of Bangkok, 
said KNU officials, speaking on condition of anonymity. 

 It was the second attack on a KNU stronghold opposite Phoppra district 
in Thailand's Tak province in less than a week. 

 Myanmar troops, aided by ethnic guerrilla allies of the Democratic 
Karen Buddhist Army, launched an attack on a KNU stronghold at Wei Na Na 
Hta, about 30 kilometers (18 miles) north of Waw Lay Khee on Thursday. 

 The Karen claim to have held the base despite artillery and ground 
attacks by about 400 troops. 

 KNU officials said about 150 civilians had been caught in Sunday's 
fighting and were unable to flee to safety in Thailand. 

 The KNU claimed that four Myanmar soldiers died in the attack on Waw 
Lay Khee and one of their own guerrillas was injured. 

 They also said that one Myanmar officer and nine other government 
troops were wounded in heavy fighting through Saturday night around Wei 
Na Na Hta. 

 Thai villagers near the fighting are being evacuated to safer areas 
away from the border. 

 The attacks seem to follow a familiar pattern of the government taking 
the offensive just as the rainy season, which began around July, is 
coming to an end. 

 The KNU has been fighting for regional autonomy since Myanmar's 
independence in 1948. It once controlled a large part of the country's 
eastern border region, but in recent years lost its last major enclaves 
along the border with Thailand. Its forces, thought to number 2,000 to 
3,000, now fight in mobile guerrilla units. 

 It is the only major ethnic army that has refused to sign a cease-fire 
with the military regime of Myanmar, also known as Burma. The government 
has brokered deals with at least 15 other armies. 

 The KNU has said it will give up its armed struggle if its political 
rights are guaranteed. 

Karen National Union: Burma Army Destroyed IDPs Crops

Mergui-Tavoy District Information Department

4 November, 2000

Burma Army's Light Infantry Battalion 373 has destroyed six paddy 
plantations belong to Karen villagers who are hiding from Burma army at 
Mekerhkee in Tenasserim Riverside on October 25, 2000.   

On October 25, 2000, a troop of Burma army from LIB 373 (under 
controlled of Tatical Command 3, Operation Commanding HQ 5) had operated 
to search for hiding villagers and had discovered a hiding site 
Mekerhkee, Buthawplaw area, in Eastern Palaw Township (KNU Ler Mu Lah 
Townhsip). That troop has destroyed six paddy plantations. The paddy 
plantations belong to: (1) Saw Perler (approximate 2 acres)
(2) Saw Shwe Htoo (approximate 2 acres)
(3) Saw Pret (approximate 1 acre)
(4) Saw Lah Hton (approximate 3 acres)
(5) Saw New (approximate 3 acres) 
(6) Saw Kye (approximate 2 acres)
Karen villages, which have situated around Buthawplaw (Ler Mu Lah 
Towship) area were deserted because of Burma Army offensive against 
KNU's (Karen National Union) Mergui-Tavoy District in 1997. Few 
villagers fled to Thailand, became refugee but still many are hiding 
from Burma Army in the jungle, and became internally displaced persons.  

The Burma Army's intention is to eliminate the ethnic Karen IDPs who are 
hiding in the area by killed, burn and destroy practices.  

Starting from April 2000 villagers who are hiding around Buthawplaw area 
are facing constant  "search destroy and kill" operations launched by 
Burma Army. Some escaped to Thailand but still many are hinging in the 
jungle in fear, facing food shortage and illness.   


Xinhua: Myanmar Restarts New Satellite Town Project 

November 6, 2000

YANGON, November 6 

Myanmar has restarted a construction project of extending the Dagon 
Myothit, one of the three new satellite towns in the outskirts of the 
capital of Yangon, after the project halted for more than three years 
since mid-1997 due to being affected by the then Asian financial crisis, 
according to sources at the Myanmar Ministry of Construction. 

The Seikkan township of the Dagon Myothit, to be built into a garden 
city of high standard, is located very close to downtown Yangon and is 
expected to become a busy center. 

A joint venture contract between the Department of Human Settlement and 
Housing Development of the ministry and the Yangon City Development 
Committee and the private-run Yuzana Construction Group was reached last 
Tuesday to enable implementation of the suspended project, the sources 

There has been three new satellite towns with respective industrial 
zones established in the outskirts of Yangon in recent years in an 
effort to raise the standard of the Yangon city. 

These are Dagon Myothit, Hlaingtharya and Shwepyithar, of which the 
Hlaingtharya is designated as the most successful one. 

Meanwhile, the Myanmar government is also building a major bridge 
linking the Seikkan township and the Thanlyin township where another 
major industrial zone initiated by Singaporean entrepreneurs lies. 


Xinhua: Over 249,000 Telephones in Operation in Myanmar 


A total of 249,083 fixed-line telephones were in operation in Myanmar as 
of the end of March this year, official newspaper The New Light of 
Myanmar reported Sunday. 

The telephones were operated under 443 manual exchange and 96 auto 

Though the telephone penetration per 100 population is 3.57 Yangon and 
2.27 for  Mandalay respectively, the two  major cities of Myanmar, yet 
the penetration remains low at 0.51 for the whole country, the report 

Twelve years ago, the number of such telephones in Myanmar numbered only 
67,016 which were connected to 212 manual exchanges and 33 auto 

The report went on saying that direct distance dealing services have 
been greatly improved in Myanmar with the addition of digital micro-wave 
backbones and radio spur routes, adding that international direct 
dealing services became available with the establishment in 1994 of the 
Standard  A earth station and a new international gateway or transit 
telephone exchange. 

The international phone calls increased to incoming 50 million minutes 
and outgoing 18 million minutes in 1999 from 2 million and 0.79 million 
minutes respectively in 1988, the report said. 

The report disclosed that the country is now conducting system test to 
utilize traffic channels from 10,000 circuits allotted in Southeast 
Asia, Middle East and West Europe three fiber optical submarine cable. 

Meanwhile, there are 30,000  TDMA/CDMA cellular phones in Myanmar, 
mainly in Yangon and Mandalay. 

On-going GSM project will add 70,000 and 30,000 capacity to the two 
cities respectively, the report said. 

Myanmar has also started with internet E-mail services for the general 
public with initial users of only 2,500 and a plan is underway to extend 
the number of such users. 


The Guardian (London): 'It was a risk but it paid off'?James Mawdsley

November 3, 2000 

'It was a risk but it paid off': A fortnight ago, James Mawdsley was in 
solitary confinement in a Burmese jail. Now, back in Britain, he tells 
Oliver Burkeman he has no regrets 

Oliver Burkeman 

James Mawdsley is sitting in his father's flat in west London, 
hollow-eyed with exhaustion, dazed by the flurry of publicity that has 
greeted his return to Britain. This is hardly surprising for a man who 
two weeks ago was entering his 415th day of solitary confinement in a 
Burmese prison, one year into a 17-year sentence for distributing 
leaflets critical of the country's brutal military regime. 

But there is also a strange kind of homesickness for the place he has 
left, and a heavy dose of disgust for the one in which he finds himself. 
"What's regarded as important out there is things like life and death; 
here, it's designer clothes and luxury ice cream and male cosmetics," he 
says. He is most at ease talking of the friends he made in jail during 
his brief periods of socialising, how much laughter there was. He misses 
the rawness, the reality of it all. "But it's just culture shock. I'll 
get over it. I'll become just as warped as everyone else." 

Mawdsley landed at Heathrow the Saturday before last to a reception that 
combined admiration, awe, sympathy - and frustration at the naivety he 
seemed to have demonstrated in the way he chose to support the cause of 
Burmese democracy and its heroic figurehead, Aung San Suu Kyi. 

Three times the 27-year-old visited Burma with the explicit intention of 
being jailed; three times he was arrested within an hour of starting to 
hand out leaflets or play pro-democracy songs. The first time, in 1997, 
he was swiftly deported; the second, in 1998, he was tortured and served 
99 days of a five-year sentence in Rangoon's notorious Insein prison, 
feverish and underfed in a cell measuring 10ft by 8ft. It was a 
devastating experience that left him on the edge of madness. 

By the time he returned a third time, in 1999 - in the certain knowledge 
that a far longer prison sentence would follow - his motivations had 
long surpassed public comprehension. At best, he seemed foolhardy; at 
worst, mad or messianic, and a danger to the Burmese he was trying to 
help. "People are welcome to say I'm foolish," he says with a shrug. "I 
mean, it looks like that, doesn't it? I don't mind them saying that." 

He endured savage beatings in Keng Tung, the jail in north-east Burma 
where he spent the past year. Fifteen-strong gangs of men wielding 
wooden clubs attacked him repeatedly in his cell, leaving him bruised 
and bleeding internally. The rest of the time, he was lucky to be out of 
solitary for an hour each day; often, he got only 10 minutes. A 
flourescent light in his cell was never turned off. His parents could 
visit only infrequently; he spent his days doing press-ups and reading 
what few books the prison authorities did not confiscate - among them 
Nelson Mandela's autobiography and a book by the 15th-century monk 
Thomas a Kempis, reflecting his strong Catholic faith. 

Mawdsley says he doesn't have the personality of a martyr, but it's 
difficult to know how else to interpret his responses to his treatment 
in Keng Tung. He refused the authorities' offer to punish his attackers; 
they were actually prisoners he counted among his friends, coerced into 
carrying out the wishes of the guards. And anyway, "beating someone up 
is not nice, but it's very simple-minded - it's not particularly 
sinister. . .after the fear I experienced in Insein prison I will never, 
ever, ever question again what a man bows to do." He staged hunger 
strikes, first at the incarceration of another political prisoner and 
later in an effort to receive a transcript of his trial; he stunned 
visiting representatives of the junta by answering back. "I gave them a 
piece of my mind and they couldn't cope with it," he remembers. "They 
ended up walking away." 

It is only when conversation moves to the imprisonment of his Burmese 
friends that tears well up out of nowhere. "I had a kind of hope, that I 
was going to get out of prison and go back to England," he says, his 
voice cracking. "Burmese people don't have that hope. When they get out 
of prison, they're still in a prison." 

He constantly contrasts the reality of "out there" with the soft, 
insulated artificiality of "here". "When you're right up against 
suffering - and I mean the people of Burma - you're attending to a 
reality. We're protected from reality by consumerism and materialism." 
Sometimes it is all too easy to hear in his speech echoes of the 
stereotypical student on a year out - as if he is really still 19, 
trapped for almost a decade in a gap year that has spun horrifyingly out 
of control. But there is also an almost incomprehensible degree of 
rationality - as when, he says, he responded with delight at hearing of 
his 17-sentence. "I was thrilled. . . if they had given me two years, 
I'd still be there. Everyone would have thought, well, he was stupid , 
he can slog it out. But the junta don't work like that. They overreact; 
they're paranoid of dissent." The reasoning makes perfect sense; what is 
staggering is that Mawdsley was in any state to think like that. 

And he was never a romantic, backpacking, gap-year sort of student in 
any case. He was born in Germany but grew up in Ormskirk, Lancashire - 
with a twin brother, Jeremy, now a lieutenant in the Royal Artillery - 
he got stellar A-level grades, and started a degree in physics and 
philosophy at Bristol University. He was a typical student, he says. "If 
I heard the words human rights, I just hated the sound of it. I wasn't 
any kind of campaigner. I believed completely in the system - I thought 
I'd work hard, get a good degree, get a good job, be a nice boy, and it 
would all check out." And then, aged 20, he suddenly dropped out. 

He still doesn't know exactly what it was that happened to him. Reading 
Aung San Suu Kyi's biography Freedom From Fear seems to have played a 
part; the way he characterises it, the weight of appalling information 
simply became too great to ignore. "If two women in Burma were having 
hot wax poured on every inch of their bodies," he remembers thinking, 
"why aren't we doing something about it?" It was an epiphany that left 
him facing a simple logical imperative: he had to know if what the human 
rights reports were saying was true - that Burma's ruling junta was 
killing tens of thousands of the country's people in a programme of 
massacres, torture and slave labour - and to do that he had to go. 

But why did the transformation happen when it did? He has no idea. 
"There's a guy, Epictetus, historic Greek - he said you do what you've 
got to do. I'll do what I've got to do." What he did was to travel to 
New Zealand, where he met a group of Burmese refugees; he made his first 
border crossing from Thailand into Burma shortly thereafter. When he 
returned, life in Britain seemed petty and meaningless, and he was soon 
back. The first time he was arrested, he was handcuffed, kicked and 
punched; his shins were beaten with a bamboo stick before he was sent 

He never feared death, he says - especially after what he calls "the God 
thing": the religious experience he underwent two months into his 
incarceration at Insein. Previously, he had been a tepid Catholic; 
afterwards, he says, "I thought, OK, I'm not here for myself, I'm here 
to obey him I have nothing to fear from man. What can a man do to you?" 

Throughout, Mawdsley's parents, David and Diana - a property manager and 
a nurse, both with military backgrounds - have played a role that 
astonished many. They are divorced, but campaigned energetically in 
unison, not just for their son's welfare and release but for his cause 
as well, even to the extent of backing his decision to return to certain 

"My mum went out to the border and was nursing there, and she saw the 
victims of the suppression. She came back and said: 'James, I understand 
why you went.' That was a magic line." When he returned for the last 
time, Mawdsley's father tried to persuade him out of it - but when he 
failed, he drove him to Heathrow instead, confused and proud and 
frightened at the same time. "I've never been a particularly politically 
aware person," he said later. "James has made me aware." 

But there will not be another return. Mawdsley plans to write a book, to 
work for Burma through institutional channels, maybe return to the Thai 
border to meet friends from jail when they get released. But the mission 
that has occupied the past seven years is complete. 

"It's never naive to stand for the truth," he says. "I'm out in one 
piece. I'm physically fit; I'm happy - I don't look it, but just give me 
another week. People say it's stupid, it's a risk, I could have died but 
I didn't die. It was a risk, but it was a caclulated risk. It paid off. 
It worked well." He knew he had won when he stood up to the beatings, 
refusing to lodge a complaint, and the authorities relented. "I thought: 
I've done it. I've succeeded. They cracked before I did. 

"There's a lot of satisfaction in that," he adds quietly. 


DVB: Military intelligence arrests four students for staging protest 

Text of report by Burmese opposition radio on 31st October 

DVB [Democratic Voice of Burma] has learned that four students from 
Tavoy State High School No.4 have been taken in for questioning by the 
SPDC [State Peace and Development Council] Military Intelligence [MI]. 
The four students who had been expelled entered the school on 26th 
October and shouted their dissatisfaction and staged a protest. Other 
students joined them and shouted anti-government slogans. Headmaster U 
Saw Shein and the teachers were able to  control the situation. 

The MI found out about the matter and questioned the headmaster, 
teachers, and responsible parents on 28th October. One student was 
detained at Wekyin police station in Tavoy. The remaining three are 
being interrogated at the MI Unit-19 camp. The four arrested students 
are Kyaw Lin and Thet Zaw Htay, both 8th standard students, and Saw Nge 
Nge and Thet Naing Win, both 9th standard students. No details have been 
received on why they were expelled and why they came back to school to 
stage the protest. 

Source: Democratic Voice of Burma, Oslo, in Burmese 1245 gmt 31 Oct 00 

BBC Summary of World Broadcasts, Nov 4.

___________________ REGIONAL/INTERNATIONAL___________________

Kyodo: ILO May Still Punish Myanmar Despite Ban on Forced Labor 

By Yasushi Fujii 

GENEVA, Nov 6 (Oana-Kyodo) - Myanmar's bid to dodge International Labor 
Organization (ILO) sanctions by banning its practice of forcing citizens 
to toil on public works may not pass muster with the body, diplomatic 
sources said Sunday. 

They said an ordinance containing the ban, announced Thursday by the 
Yangon junta, lacks ''the specifics'' needed to avoid punishing measures 
that could include the suspension and downsizing of assistance from U.N. 
agencies and international organizations. 

The ILO governing body is to deliberate this month on whether to impose 
sanctions on Myanmar under the ILO constitution's article 33, which the 
global labor body has never invoked. 

Countries such as the United States and Britain, critical of Myanmar's 
human rights record, may argue for penalties by citing the lack of 
specifics as an another attempt by the junta to thwart the will of the 
international community, according to the sources. 

A week after a five-member ILO mission to Myanmar completed six days of 
talks with junta officials over the issue, Deputy Foreign Minister Khin 
Maung Win said various government ministries had also issued orders 
banning forced labor, but two laws -- the City Act and the Village Act 
-- allowing forced labor have not been repealed. 

Following the declaration of the ordinance by the Ministry of Home 
Affairs under the guidance of the ruling State Peace and Development 
Council (SPDC), Myanmar no longer has ''the legal basis which existed in 
the previous two acts,'' the sources said. The ordinance also says 
government authorities cannot ''request forced labor.'' 

But diplomats see problems in the implementation of the ban. 

For instance, the SPDC must send specific instructions to local military 
commanders if the prohibition is to be effective and put into practice. 

''So far, we have not seen any such thing,'' one diplomat said. 

The mission may submit its report to the governing body as early as 

The document will serve as the basis for discussions on the matter at 
the body. 

The sources said Myanmar's omission of details on terminating forced 
labor would be mentioned in the report, which will likely draw criticism 
of Yangon by the U.S. and other states. An ILO spokesman declined to 
discuss the contents of the report, saying it is still in the ''editing 

In addition, Myanmar has rejected repealing the two acts, saying the 
SPDC is only a ''transitional authority'' with no mandate to scrap laws 
passed by a legitimate legislature. In November 1997, the SPDC replaced 
the State Law and Order Restoration Council (SLORC), which was formed 
following a military coup in September 1988. 

In 1998, the ILO adopted a resolution requesting Myanmar to end ''all 
forms of forced labor.'' It calls for the repeal of the Town Act and 
Village Act, as well as the punishment of officials involved in forced 

Article 33 states that the governing body can recommend the IlO general 
conference take ''such action as it may deem wise and expedient to 
secure compliance'' with a recommendation by an ilo commission of 
inquiry or a decision by the International Court of Justice. 

In June, the International Labor Conference, the ILO's highest 
decision-making body, adopted a resolution saying article 33 will be 
invoked unless Myanmar makes concrete progress that is satisfactory to 
the ILO by the end of November. 

The time-buying resolution was adopted following a fierce debate in 
which Japan and other Asian states pressed for more dialogue with and 
encouragement of the junta to bring about an end to its use of forced 
labor. The U.S. and European countries, meanwhile, urged immediate 

Some diplomats are concerned that resorting to the measure may open a 
pandora's box of labor-practices cases, leading to sanctions against 
countries such as Iraq and Cuba. 

-- Oana-Kyodo 


South China Morning Post: Exasperated UN observer leaves big shoes to 

November 6, 2000 

William Barnes in Bangkok 

The resignation of the United Nations human rights investigator for 
Burma, Judge Rajsoomer Lallah, shows how difficult it is to deal with a 
regime that is deaf to criticism, say sympathetic observers. 

The resignation also points to the difficulty of finding adequate 
funding for an unpopular job. 

Human rights activists now fear that the United Nations will be tempted 
to appoint a less critical inquisitor to try to tempt the regime to 
respond positively. 

Mr Lallah cited a lack of support from the Office of the High 
Commissioner for Human Rights. "This is a tremendous shame because his 
reports were good. It's a nightmare job really because you don't get 
much thanks from anyone - least of all from the regime of course," said 
one London-based human rights activist. 

The last straw may have been the recent "unfortunate administrative 
misunderstanding" that prevented him from travelling from Geneva to New 
York to present his latest human rights report to the UN General 
Assembly and conducting important meetings relating to his mandate. His 
predecessor as special rapporteur, Professor Yozo Yokota, resigned for 
similar reasons. 

The former chief justice of Mauritius said in what turned out to be his 
last report that he viewed "with deep concern the continuing 
deterioration of the human rights situation in Myanmar (Burma)". His 
report serves as the draft for the UN General Assembly resolution on 
Burma this month. 

Mr Lallah, who has written increasingly gloomy reports over the last 
four years, was never allowed to enter the country, but gathered 
information from local experts, exiles, written testimony and 
neighbouring countries. 

As well as bitterly criticising the "extortion, rape, torture, forced 
labour and portering" inflicted by the army on ethnic minorities, Mr 
Lallah also slammed the hounding of opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi 
and her colleagues by threats and arrests. 

One UN Human Rights Commission watcher said lack of funding was clearly 
a problem. 

This veteran observer described Mr Lallah as "an exemplary rapporteur, 
delivering firm, well-written and legally meticulous reports on the 
human rights situation in Burma", who noted above all the deep lack of 
respect for democratic rights of all kinds. 

"The generals will no doubt be very happy that they are no longer in 
Judge Lallah's sights, and be hoping that the next special rapporteur 
appointed by the Commission on Human Rights will be more accommodating," 
he said. 

Burmese troops and their Democratic Karen Buddhist Army allies have 
launched a heavy offensive against a rebel Karen National Union 
stronghold near the Thai border, Thai officials said. 


New Straits Times (Malaysia): Myanmar pledges support for Malaysia

November 4, 2000 

MYANMAR have pledged their full backing for Malaysia's bid to stage the 
2006 Asian Games. 

Sports Minister Datuk Hishammuddin Hussein said the support was pledged 
by Myanmar National Olympic Council president Major Gen Thura Aye Mint 
a meeting with the Malaysian Bid Committee for the Games in Yangdon on 

"Myanmar have assured that it will vote for Kuala Lumpur in Pusan. The 
support is based on strong ties between the two countries forged since 
long ago, especially in sports and economics. 

"Myanmar also express their confidence that Malaysia are capable of 
staging the prestigious event." 

The Malaysian delegation also met Myanmar's Social, Welfare, Relief and 
Resettlement Minister Major Gen Sein Htwa and State Law and Order 
Restoration Council (SLORC) secretary-general Lt Gen Khin Nyunt, who is 
also the Asean Steering Committee chairman. 

The visit to Myanmar was the last in a series of similar visits 
conducted by the bid committee. Earlier, they had visited a number of 
Asian nations to woo support for Malaysia's bid to host the 2006 Asiad. 

Apart from Malaysia, the other nations bidding to host the event are 
Hong Kong, India and Qatar. 

The successful nation will be announced at the Olympic Council of Asia 
(OCA) general assembly in Pusan, South Korea on Nov 12. 


_______________ ECONOMY AND BUSINESS _______________

Xinhua: Foreign Investment in Myanmar Encouraging at Start of 2000-2001 

YANGON, November 6 

Foreign Investment in Myanmar in the first three months alone of the 
present fiscal year 2000-2001, which began in April, has overtaken that 
absorbed in the two previous fiscal years with 64.133 million U.S. 
dollars, according to the latest data of the official Economic 

The country drew only 29.455 million and 55.61 million dollars 
respectively in 1998-99 and 1999-2000. 

The investment in the first quarter of 2000-2001 is seen as encouraging 
as the country has experienced a fall in the investment for years. 

The obtaining of the encouraging amount of the foreign investment during 
the three-month period as compared with the two previous fiscal years is 
attributed to the huge investment alone in the oil and gas sector with 
47.55 million dollars and that in the manufacturing sector with 15.871 

It is noted that South Korea, Canada and Malaysia injected the largest 
investment in the three-month period with 30.21 million, 21.45 million 
and 9.832 million dollars respectively. 

Since the outbreak of the Asian financial crisis in mid-1997, Myanmar's 
foreign investment fell for a two consecutive fiscal years to 777.394 
million dollars in 1997-98 and then to 29.455 million in 1998-99 before 
picking up a little in 1999-2000 with 55. 61 million. 

During the period when hit by the crisis, direct investment from member 
states of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations reportedly dropped 
by 70 percent. 

According to official statistics, total foreign investment in Myanmar 
drawn from 25 countries and regions since late 1988 amounted to 7.234 
billion dollars as of the end of June this year. 


Bangkok Post: Wa moving to saturate Thai market; Avalanche of speed 
pills predicted 

November 4, 2000 

The United Wa State Army will flood the market with three billion 
methamphetamine pills next year, or about 300 million tablets a month, 
according to a Third Army source. 

Production capability will be far above the estimated 600 million pills 
their illegal factories in Burma churned out this year, the source said. 

More gangs will shift to moving the drug into the country through the 
East and Northeast rather than the North. 

Because of the huge numbers of pills being made, shipments were expected 
to be in bulk, ranging from 100,000 tablets to millions of pills. 

The source said the Wa were experimenting with production of 
methamphetamine in the form of an inhalant, which was expected to be 
brought in via the border in Nan and Phetchabun. Gen Surayud Chulanont, 
the army chief, said priority was being given to the problem, which 
posed a threat not only to national security but also to politics. The 
most effective way to combat drugs was to move against the producers and 
dealers, cut demand and help addicts quit, he said. 

An army source said the Internal Security Operations Command had 
submitted its anti-drug plan for next year to Prime Minister Chuan 
Leekpai as Isoc director. 

- A former policeman and another man were charged with trafficking in 
400,000 methamphetamine pills in Prawet district yesterday. 

Police said Supoj Mansak, 30, and Kitti Supoonna, 36, were also found 
with 618,000 baht and guns when they were arrested in a car park at 
Chinda Mansion in Chalerm Phrakiat Soi 12. 

Mr Kitti said he and Mr Supoj, a former traffic officer, had been hired 
to deliver the pills. He said the value of speed traded in the past 
three months was up to 44 million baht. 

Wassana Nanuam 


_____________________ OTHER  ______________________

AP: Myanmar coach says he has a secret strategy against Thailand 

Nov 5, 2000


BANGKOK, Thailand (AP) _ Myanmar's national coach David Booth says he 
will employ a secret strategy against Thailand when the two teams meet 
Monday in their opening Group A match of the Tiger Cup tournament. 

 ``The squad this time is much different from before. There are several 
younger players and I am confident that they will work very hard ... to 
get a result,'' Booth told reporters Sunday in the northern city of 
Chiang Mai. The comments were reported in a press release by the 

 The preliminary matches of the nine-nation Southeast Asian tournament 
are being held in Chiang Mai and the southern town of Songkhla. On 
Sunday, defending champion Singapore defeated Cambodia 1-0 and Malaysia 
drew with Vietnam 0-0 in their Group B matches in Songkhla. 

 The final will be held in Bangkok on Nov. 18. 

 Also Friday, Indonesia will take on the Philippines in another Group A 
match. The ninth team in the tournament is Laos, which will open its 
Group B campaign on Tuesday against Malaysia. 

 Booth, one of the top coaches from Ghana's club sides, said it was 
important that he kept his game plan a secret so that he could spring a 
surprise on Thailand. 

 Peter Withe, the Thai coach, said he was not interested in finding out 
how the Myanmar team played. 

 ``As the coach of Thailand, I am more concerned about how we play. And 
I do add that if we play to our true capabilities, we can beat any team 
as we have shown in the past,'' he was quoted as saying in the press 

 ``I will go into the match ... like I have prepared any of the teams 
before - that is to win,'' said Withe, a former England international. 

 ``That is the only way I know how to play,'' he said. 

 The result of the Thailand-Myanmar tie could be crucial to Indonesia's 
chances of making the last four. 



The BurmaNet News is an Internet newspaper providing comprehensive 
coverage of news and opinion on Burma  (Myanmar) from around the world.  
If you see something on Burma, you can bring it to our attention by 
emailing it to strider@xxxxxxx

For a subscription to Burma's only free daily newspaper, write to: 

You can also contact BurmaNet by phone or fax:

Voice mail or fax (US) +1(202) 318-1261
You will be prompted to press 1 for a voice message or 2 to send a fax.  
If you do neither, a fax tone will begin automatically.

Fax (Japan) +81 (3) 4512-8143


T O P I C A  http://www.topica.com/t/17
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