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DAILY EDITION

ISSUE 31 | WEDNESDAY, APRIL 29, 2015

Wa army
restricts
access to
summit
EI EI TOE LWIN
WA LONE
newsroom@mmtimes.com

Myanmars
reggae king
Saw Phoe Khwar grew
up unable to get his
hands on the music of
Bob Marley, but years
of travelling the world
as a sailor opened his
ears to the sounds of
reggae. Four albums
into his career, the
47-year-old father-oftwo is increasingly
using his position as
Myanmars leading
exponent of reggae to
push for peace and
human rights.

MOST media organisations have been


refused permission to attend an ethnic
leaders meeting at the headquarters of
the United Wa State Army, Pangkham.
The Wa army gave approval to eight organisations to attend the May 1-3 meeting, despite receiving 37 requests.
UWSA spokesperson U Aung Myint
said only one foreign media organisation, Chinese state news agency Xinhua,
had been given permission. The others
are Myanmar-based print media, including Daily Eleven, Irrawaddy, 7-Day
Daily and the Union Solidarity and Development Party paper Union Daily.
The Myanmar Times was among
the publications refused permission to
attend the meeting, which will bring
together the leaders of 12 armed ethnic
groups.
U Aung Myint said the number of
organisations granted permission was
limited because of political concerns,
adding that the decision was made by
the groups central committee.
The decision has provoked criticism
in the industry, with some questioning
what the Wa group has to hide from
journalists.
The UWSA has been declared a narcotics trafficking organisation by the
United States Drug Enforcement Agency since 2003, and most of its leaders
are subject to US sanctions. It also
commands the largest non-state army
in Myanmar, with an estimated 20,000
men under arms equipped with the latest military hardware from China.
CONTINUED ON NEWS 2

Speaker to talk business in US


Thura U Shwe Mann will fly out tomorrow for a week-long visit that is expected to feature meetings with trade
bodies and newly hired lobby firm Podesta, as well as members of government and Congress. NEWS 3

2 News

THE MYANMAR TIMES APRIL 29, 2015

CONTINUED FROM NEWS 1


U Myint Kyaw, secretary of the Myanmar Journalist Network, said that
while journalists could generally enter the territory of other armed ethnic groups, the UWSA strictly controls who enters its patch of eastern
Shan State.
They [UWSA] might worry about
what journalists will find out if they
visit Pangkham, he said.
U Aung Myint said the UWSA was

aware of the criticism.


We dont care about it. We have
our own problems related to political
issues to worry about, he said, refusing to elaborate.
The UWSA central committee has
also provoked controversy with its
decision to only allow 12 groups to attend.
Seven of 16 groups in the Nationwide Ceasefire Coordination Team,

which negotiated a draft ceasefire


with the government, have been
excluded.
However, the Wa has invited the
ethnic Kokang Myanmar National
Democratic Alliance Army, the Arakan
Army and the Taang National Liberation Army, against the governments
wishes. The three groups have been
fighting the Tatmadaw in northeastern Shan State since February 9.

The meeting comes after the governments peace negotiation team, the
Union Peace-making Work Committee, reached a provisional agreement
on a nationwide ceasefire with the
NCCT on March 31.
Participants at the Pangkham
meeting will discuss the draft nationwide ceasefire agreement, as well as
the current fighting between ethnic
armed groups and the Tatmadaw.

Delayed land-use forum scheduled for June


SANDAR LWIN
sdlsandar@gmail.com
A NATIONAL forum to finalise a draft
national land-use policy will be held
in Nay Pyi Taw in June, an official involved in the process said yesterday,
almost six months after originally
planned.
The process has been delayed due
to complaints from civil society about
the lack of consultation on the policy,
which was first released to the public
in October 2014.
U Tin Maung Than, a director at
the Ministry of Environmental Conservation and Forestry, which is responsible for developing the policy,
said the forum would feature wide
stakeholder participation, including
land rights activists.
The draft policy will then be updated with input from activists and land
law experts, he said.
The ministry will provide documents to participants well in advance
to ensure they have enough time to
draft feedback, said U Aye Maung
Sein, another director of the MOECAF.
Participants at an expert roundtable meeting in March had complained
about only being given documents a
few days before the event, he said.
Last time there were many complaints about the short time given to
review the draft policy, he said. We
will try to correct that for the national
forum.
The government started drafting
the policy in 2012, following a series
of public demonstrations on land concession and disputes, and released it
to the public in October.
The Land Use Scrutiny and Allocation Committee, a body led by the
minister for environmental conservation and forestry that steered the
drafting process, allocated just six
weeks for consultations, including
17 consultation meetings across the
country, an expert roundtable and a
national forum.
The original plan was for the policy to be put to cabinet within two
months. After approval it would provide the framework for a national

A farmer protests against a land confiscation in Yangons East Dagon township in June 2013. Photo: Zarni Phyo

land-use law, which parliament would


approve before the 2015 election.
However, the process was extended almost immediately following a deluge
of complaints from land rights groups,
which accused officials of trying to
rush it through.
Land rights are likely to be a critical issue in the vote, with hundreds
of thousands of farmers some estimates put the figure at 5 percent
having been evicted from their land
in recent decades as a result of weak
tenure rights, corruption and government policies.
In 2012, parliament formed a commission to investigate land disputes
and recommend resolutions, but the
amount of land returned has been
minimal, in large part due to reluctance from the government, military
and businesses to comply.

At the same time, official figures


show that agriculture concessions to
businesses have risen by 170 percent
under President U Thein Seins government, fuelling further conflict with
smallholders.
Activists said yesterday that the
extension of the process was an improvement but the consultations on
the land-use policy still fell short of
international standards.
This was the first time in Myanmar that people have had a chance to
participate in formulating a national
policy. Despite the time limitation
and other weaknesses, it can become
a model process for other policies,
said U Shwe Thein, head of the Land
Core Group, a network of more than
50 land rights groups.
During the process, we saw experts and rights activists were able

to lead consultations and make


frank comments. Government officials showed patience and responded
to the feedback. I feel that is quite
significant, he said.
After missing its earlier deadlines,
the government has not announced a
new date for signing off on the policy.
U Shwe Thein warned against trying to rush it through ahead of the
election.
Such a vital policy as this one
should not be rushed for any reason,
he said. Taking time and ensuring we
have a strong policy is always better
than a quick but faulty one.
U Tin Maung Than said officials
were taking their time to consider
feedback.
We are now analysing the suggestions from the expert meetings and
updating the draft.

YKKO says
sorry over
bug-in-soup
controversy
YE MON
yeemontun2013@gmail.com
THE apology was sincere, even fulsome. The restaurant chain YKKO
wished it to be known that it was
very sorry that a customer at its
Tarmwe township branch had discovered an insect in her kyay-oh
soup and, moreover, that the waiter
who received the complaint appeared insufficiently responsive.
The companys April 27 statement
was intended for all its customers
and staff, and could also be taken as
a warning to the insect population.
At least, social insects.
Customer Juu Juu Lay had posted
on her Facebook page on April 22
an account of the mishap that had
befallen her at the Tarmwe branch,
when she found she was sharing her
meal with an uninvited companion.
YKKO said it was deeply upset
and apologised for the inconvenience, acknowledging criticism of
its services, standards of cleanliness
and the taste of its food.
The management blamed its own
weaknesses, as well as staff training, and defective supervision. The
company said it would improve
training so as to ensure customer
satisfaction.
This may take some time. YKKO
customer, or perhaps ex-customer,
Daw Wai Moe, who lives in Kamaryut township, said yesterday she
was unsurprised at Juu Juu Lays
experience.
She said some YKKO branches
were very dirty, while waiters were
not elegant and had poor customer
relations skills.
Ive already decided I will never
again eat at YKKO since I saw the
rats in the Seikkanthar Road branch
in Kyauktada township. Now they
have insects as well, she said.
Ko Thet Maung, of Mayangone
township, said restaurant customers should acquire the habit of complaining about substandard or dirty
food.
Most restaurant kitchens are
not clean. Customers know, but they
dont complain. We should complain
if the service or the food or the cleanliness is not sufficient, he said.
YKKO was established in 1988 as
Yankin Kyay-Oh. It has 31 branches
and more than 1200 staff across several cities.

Fears as army blocks aid to Rakhine


Number of people displaced by clashes in Kyauktaw township rises, as aid groups report that the Tatmadaw has refused them access to the area
LUN MIN MANG
lunminlm@gmail.com
CONCERN about the plight of villagers trapped in the combat zone in
northern Rakhine State is deepening
as volunteers reported yesterday that
food is now running short in six villages of Kyauktaw township.
The Tatmadaw has confined the villagers to their homes as fighting persists. The clashes between government
forces and the Arakan Army began last
month, forcing several hundred villagers to flee their homes. Volunteers trying to assist them estimate there are
now more than 520 displaced people
in the village of Sapa Seik. At least 200
of those in Sapa Seik are children, according to aid groups.
Yesterday it emerged that six other villages in the vicinity are short of

food, as the Tatmadaw refuses to allow


them into the forest or to visit their
farms, members of the Kyauktaw aid
committee told The Myanmar Times.
Civilians in Taungmuzi, Wapyan,
Zalainttaung, Lintzin Ywathit, Kyingyi
and Linguii managed to alert the committee to their situation.
Daw Nyo Aye, chair of the Womens
Network in Sittwe, who joined the second visit of the aid committee to the
village of Sapa Seik on April 27, said
the information had come through to
them a few days ago.
We received calls from some of
the villages. The villagers passed on
the information to their relatives in
Kyauktaw and then on to us, she said.
Some of them said they had only
enough food for two days. We are worried about them, she added.
Ko Zaw Win, a member of the aid

committee, said the villagers could not


leave their villages in search of food
because of restrictions imposed by the
military.
In poor villages, they have to go
into the forest to search for plants
and vegetables, and farmers have to
go out of village to reach their farms.
But since the fighting broke out they
have not been permitted to go out any
more, he said.
The aid committee is calling for
more donations and is planning to
visit the villages again within the coming week.
However, it is not clear that the
military will allow them to do so. Although the committee met with the
military authorities on April 27, they
failed to receive a clear answer to their
request for permission.
The military said the villagers

can ask them for help and they would


bring food for them, Daw Nyo Aye
said. But the villagers are in fear.
It would be better if they let our aid
committee take the food. But first we
have to convince them that the aid is
intended for the villagers.

Some of them said


they had only enough
food for two days.
We are worried
about them.
Daw Nyo Aye
Womens Network

After her last trip to the combat zone, Daw Nyo Aye said she had
brought a sick child back from Sapa
Seik and would place the child in Sittwe Hospital.
Five members of the aid committee
were allowed to make a second visit
to Sapa Seik, bringing more than 50
sacks of rice, dried fish, fish paste and
other food supplies.
The US embassy in Yangon said on
April 27 it was concerned by reports
that hundreds of Rakhine civilians
have been displaced by recent fighting in Kyauktaw.
We urge all parties to cease hostilities, and ensure the protection of
civilians and timely delivery of all
necessary humanitarian assistance to
the affected population in accordance
with international standards, the embassy said in a statement.

www.mmtimes.com

NEWS EDITOR: Thomas Kean | tdkean@gmail.com

Business and politics on


Speakers US itinerary
Delegation prepares for grilling over constitutional change, the election and controversial religious bills

News 3

More than
300,000
white cards
returned:
government
LUN MIN MANG
lunminlm@gmail.com

EI EI TOE
LWIN
eieitoelwin@gmail.com

PARLIAMENT Speaker Thura U Shwe


Mann will depart for the United States
today on a visit that aims to further
both political and economic ties at a
crucial time for bilateral relations.
Accompanied by four key parliamentarians, the Speaker will spend
a week in Washington and New York,
meeting members of Congress and
Senate, government officials and representatives of trade associations.
It is his second visit to the United
States, and comes at the invitation of
the speaker of Congress, Republican
John Boehner. He will be joined by
members of the parliaments International Relations Committee, Economic and Trade Development Committee
and Farmers, Workers and Youth Affairs Committee.
U Hla Myint Oo, head of the International Relations Committee, said
the delegation had prepared presentations on key political and economic
developments in Myanmar, including
constitutional change, preparations
for this years election and some bills
under discussion in parliament an
apparent reference to the controversial race and religion laws proposed
by Buddhist nationalists.
Ive prepared answers to the
questions that we are likely to be
asked, U Hla Myint Oo told The Myanmar Times yesterday.
He said the trip would also likely
include a meeting with Podesta, a
public relations firm the government
recently hired to lobby on its behalf
in Washington.
U Hla Myint Oo said that while
parliament had not been involved
in the decision to retain Podesta, the
meeting would be beneficial.
[Podesta] will have to work for
the sake of the whole country. I think
they will want to know some information about parliament, he said. I
hope we will meet with them.
The government has reportedly
hired the Washington-based firm on
a year-long contract at US$840,000,
plus business-class travel and luxury
accommodation expenses. On March
31, Podesta Group CEO Kimberly Fritts
signed the deal with U Kyaw Myo Htut,
Myanmars ambassador to the US.
The agreement has provoked some
criticism, including from National
League for Democracy leader Daw
Aung San Suu Kyi, who said in an
interview with Radio Free Asia that

Thura U Shwe Mann speaks during a Union Solidarity and Development Party conference in Nay Pyi Taw in 2012. Photo: AFP

a government that serves the interests of its citizens does not need to
pay anyone to lobby on its behalf in
Washington.

US$

840,000
Amount the government will pay
Podesta to lobby on its behalf in
Washington over the next year

However, soon after reaching the


agreement the US Treasury Department announced the lifting of sanctions against U Win Aung, head of the

countrys peak business body, the Union of Myanmar Federation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry (see
related story page 8).
Thura U Shwe Mann made his first
visit to the US in June 2013 during
which he announced he would seek
the presidency after U Thein Sein
but meetings between the Pyidaungsu Hluttaw and Congress have been
relatively rare.
Political analyst U Yan Myo Thein
said the improvements to bilateral
relations since 2011 had been mostly
due to the ties between the Obama
administration and President U
Thein Seins government.
Most criticism of Myanmars reforms in the US has come from Congress, where President Obamas political opponents have tried to downplay
Myanmar as a foreign policy win for
his administration.

At the moment bilateral relations


between the US and Myanmar are
very positive, U Yan Myo Thein said.
But I think the main reason behind
hiring [Podesta] is that Myanmar wanted to build trust with both cabinet and
Congress. Thura U Shwe Mann will try
to improve relations and lobby for Myanmar when the delegation meets the
US members of parliament.
He suggested that the US government should be careful not to give
too much too soon to Nay Pyi Taw, as
there is still much to do to improve
human rights and further the political transition.
At the moment the benefits from
having good relations between Myanmar and the US go only to the upper
levels, the government, he said. We
welcome good relations with the US
but we want to see it lead to benefits
for the people.

RAKHINE State immigration officers have collected more than


300,000 white cards in the past
four weeks, state immigration
department director U Khin
Soe told The Myanmar Times
yesterday.
He said that figure represented half of all of the white-card
holders in Rakhine.
In February, the Presidents
Office announced that the cards,
which have been distributed to
temporary citizens, would be
invalid from March 31. Holders have been given until May
31 to return them. The decision
followed protests prompted by
parliaments decision to allow
white-card holders to vote in a
planned referendum.
More than 83 percent of
white-card holders live in Rakhine State, and most are held
by Muslims who identify as
Rohingya.
The handback began slowly,
but has gathered speed since,
said immigration director U
Khin Soe.
As of today, we have received
300,432 white cards, nearly half
the 660,000 issued in Rakhine
State. We believe we can recover
them all by the end of May, U
Khin Soe said yesterday.
In some camps, they are
still afraid of surrendering their
cards. But as soon as they clearly
understand that the current
white cards are useless, I am
sure they will give them up, he
added.
In collecting the cards, the
authorities check the number
against ministry records.
If the card numbers dont
match our records, we will not
take them. Otherwise, we will accept all cards even if the photo
is unclear or the card is torn, U
Khin Soe said.
Collection began across the
country on April 1.
It is not yet clear what document, if any, will eventually be
given to the former white-card
holders. The issue may again become contentious in the context
of the referendum to be held on
amendments to the constitution,
as well as the November election.
According to the ministry,
there are 797,504 white-card
holders around the country.
Only Kayah State and western
Bago Region have no white-card
holders.

4 News

THE MYANMAR TIMES APRIL 29, 2015

Chief Executive Officer


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tonychild.mcm@gmail.com
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EDITORIAL
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The Pulse Editor MTE Charlotte Rose
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Human smuggling set to


become even bigger plight
LAIGNEE
BARRON
laignee@gmail.com

ALREADY a $2 billion industry,


Southeast Asias deadly human smuggling trade stands to grow even larger
under the enhanced transportation
and increasingly porous borders of an
integrated ASEAN, according to a new
report by the UN.
Migrant Smuggling in Asia 2015:
Current Trends and Related Challenges maps the destinations, routes
and human and financial costs for 28
countries involved in the behemoth
underground industry.
Propelled largely by the lure of
jobs and higher wages, Southeast
Asias migrants turn to human smugglers when the formal regular labour migration channels fail them,
the report by the UN Office for Drugs
and Crime says.
The complex, often ad hoc smuggling arrangement to destinations as
as far-flung as Turkey, Australia and
the United States expose migrants to
deadly risks, like beings smuggled by
sea during monsoon season on improvised floatation devices and traveling
overland through dense jungle concealed in vehicles at risk of suffocation
or heat exhaustion.
And the trend could be at the cusp
of a new boom as the region integrates
and border controls ease, according to
the UNODCs report.
The cross-border movement of
people in Asia is expected to grow rapidly and at unprecedented levels with
the expansion of infrastructure across
the region, said Jeremy Douglas, regional representative of UNODC in
Southeast Asia and the Pacific.
Myanmar provides one of the regions largest outflows of smuggled
migrants. The emigrees are predominantly headed to Thailand and Malaysia, though the country is one of two in
the region with migrants destined for
outside of Southeast Asia; the other is
Vietnam.
More than 84,000 irregular Myanmar migrants were caught while

Refugee seekers from Rakhine State trying to cross into Bangladesh by boat were caught in June 2012. Photo: AFP

trying to enter Thailand in 2013, according to the UNODC. Eighty-three


percent of irregular Myanmar migrants entering Thailand did so with
the help of smugglers.
While Myanmar migrants are often
compelled into the arms smugglers for
economic reasons the nation has the
smallest GDP per capita at US$1405
and one of the highest unemployment
rates in the region they also encounter other, more political driving factors.
Insecurity and seeking asylum
abroad are additional factors in motivating some of the irregular migration
from Myanmar, the report reads.
Rohingya from Rakhine State are
the most common ethnicity from Myanmar to be smuggled, both within
Southeast Asia and further afield to
India, Pakistan, China and Australia.
Ethnic Rohingyas use the services
of smugglers to enter Thailand by sea,

before travelling to Malaysia in search


of work and shelter within established
Rohingya communities in Kuala
Lumpur and Penang, it says.
Many then continue on to Indonesia or Australia, paying upward of
$3000 for the onward journey.
While migrants seek out smugglers help crossing border in search
of improved livelihoods, the process
magnifies risks of human trafficking
and exploitation.
Trafficking does not begin in the
country of origin but in the destination country, when opportunistic
criminals lure smuggled migrants into
traps that become human trafficking
situations, the report says.
Migrant rights advocates fear the
region isnt prepared for an uptick in
trafficking vulnerabilities that could
accompany increased trade and travel,
but suggested one route to countering

those risks could include a better, formalised route overseas.


It would of course reduce human
smuggling if there were easy and lowcost regular migration channels it
would also better protect the migrants
when they were in the destination
countries, said Hkun Sa Mun Htoi
from the Mekong Migration Network.
According to Police Brigadier
General Win Naing Tun, Myanmar
has been actively combating human
trafficking over the past year, rescuing 301 victims and arresting 238
traffickers from September 2014 to
April 2015.
Anti-human trafficking police say
fewer than 30 cases of trafficking occurred in Myanmar during the first
three months of this year, and not
a single case was noted in Rakhine
State. Additional reporting by Nyan
Lynn Aung and Pyae Thet Phyo

Brain waste a fear for Myanmar migrant community


KYAW PHONE KYAW
k.phonekyaw@gmail.com
MYANMARS skilled and educated are
pouring out of the country in search
of better-paying jobs, leading to fears
of brain drain and brain waste, according to the International Labour
Organisation.
The results of the ILOs latest survey, which was based on interviews
over two months with 625 people of
different races, hometowns and ages,
revealed that 22pc of potential migrants have attained a university degree. They expect their qualifications
to reap higher dividends abroad, even
in low-skill industries.
It is concern for the country, the
report said.
According to the survey released
on April 28, Myanmars average migrant falls between the ages of 18 and
24. Only 8pc are over 35 years old.
Fifty-three percent of potential
migrants already had a job, but found
their employment situation to be unfavourable compared to overseas options. The survey took into account
three migration-heavy areas: Mandalay, Tanintharyi Region and Shan
State. Those from Tanintharyi Region

The International Organisation for Migration released its latest survey on


Myanmars migrant community on April 28. Photo: Aung Htay Hlaing

and Shan State were more likely to be


jobless prior to migrating, Ben Harkins of the ILO said.
The migrants and would-be migrants looked abroad not only for a
higher income, but also for new job
opportunities and stable sources of

income.
Over half of the potential migrants
surveyed intend to go to Thailand or
Malaysia, where they expect to earn
between $105 and $415 a month. Many
of those with a high school degree anticipated salaries upwards of $520.

An overwhelming number of survey respondents (73pc) learn about


labour migration options from friends
or family members, eschewing labour
officials assistance.
Only 1pc of migrants believe that
they could obtain correct information
from the regional labour office, the
report said.
When faced with problems in the
labour migration process, almost half
said they would inform family and
friends about any grievances. Only 19pc
would inform the police, and just 10pc
would bother with labour officials.
In search of more information
about Myanmars migration trends,
the ILO opened more than t10 Migrant Resource Centres in Myanmar,
according to Jackie Pollock, a technical officer at the ILO in Yangon.
We need to conduct more research
to understand why Myanmars younggraduates go overseas for low-level
jobs, and if we can put them to work in
any jobs better suited to them. If they
need more skills, which skills do they
need? she said.
According to the official government figures, more than 3 million
Myanmar migrants currently work in
Thailand and Malaysia.

News 5

www.mmtimes.com

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ICG warns against


zero-sum politics
after November vote
THOMAS
KEAN
tdkean@gmail.com

A LEADING think tank has warned


of the dangers of zero-sum politics
during the transition period following
Myanmars election this year, when
questions of succession are hammered
out by political leaders.
The International Crisis Group
said in a report yesterday that opposition leader Daw Aung San Suu Kyis
likely ineligibility for the presidency
could lead to a compromise candidate
including possibly a member of the
USDP being put forward following
the vote, which is scheduled for November.
The report, Myanmars Electoral
Landscape, said the elections could
potentially build confidence in the reform process or damage the delicate
set of compromises that have underpinned the process depending on their
credibility and how leading political
players respond.
It behoves political leaders on all

sides to ensure that they keep this


larger prize foremost in their minds,
it said.
The major question hovers over
the presidency, as under Myanmars
constitution Daw Aung San Suu Kyi is
ineligible due to her sons holding foreign citizenship. While parliament is
considering amendments to the charter, these are unlikely to be enacted
this year even if they eventually get
the military support required to pass
parliament.
The National League for Democracy is likely to perform strongly in the
poll and may even win a majority
nationally but it is unclear who its
MPs would support for the presidency,
as the party has no clear alternative
candidate.
The president is chosen through
what is known as the Presidential
Electoral College, whereby civilian
representatives in the lower and upper
house of the national parliament select
one candidate each through a nomination and vote process, while appointed
military representatives choose a third
candidate. All MPs, both elected and
appointed, then vote for their preferred president from the three nominees. The one with the largest number

of votes becomes president.


However, this process will not
take place until at least three months
after the election, which would create a period of considerable uncertainty, possible tension, and intense
behind-the-scenes negotiation, the
ICG said.
The outcome, and the extent to
which it is broadly accepted, will determine whether there is a smooth
transfer of power and whether the next
administration will have the broad support necessary to govern or have its legitimacy constantly questioned, it said.
Probably the most important factor will be the support or at least
acquiescence of the military, which
retains strong influence over the
process.
While Commander-in-Chief Senior
General Min Aung Hlaing has voiced
support for the democratic electoral
process, it does not mean he would be
comfortable with all the potential implications of such an outcome, the ICG
said.
Similarly, it is unclear whether the
majority of NLD members fully understand the likely post-election scenarios, particularly Daw Aung San Suu
Kyis likely ineligibility, it said.

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Myanmar Registration Number- 4/16566/2014

Myanmar Registration Number- 4/16568/2014

US ramps up youth leadership support


CHERRY THEIN
t.cherry6@gmail.com
THE United States is stepping up its
program to empower youths in Myanmar. The US education and cultural
affairs unit is funding two programs
the Southeast Asia Leadership Program (SEAYLP), launched in 2010, and
the Burma Youth Leadership Program
(BYLP), launched in 2012. Between
them, they have helped 94 young Myanmar citizens.
The two programs train young people to play a greater role in Myanmars
social development.
Daw Thu Zar Thwin, a cultural affairs assistant for education who helps
coordinate the BYLP, told The Myanmar Times yesterday that it helped
train the younger generation to contribute to the community.
The programs have been so successful that we decided to offer it annually instead of alternately every two

years, she said.


Twenty participants will be selected for the Myanmar-specific program,
while another six from Myanmar will
be accepted for the Southeast Asiawide program.
The program involves workshops,
interactive sessions, simulations, leadership training, team-building exercises, extracurricular activities and
home stays with American families.
Participants must promise to work for
a development project on their return
to Myanmar.
The assistant working on SEAYLP,
Daw Kyi Tha, said the goal was to develop a sense of civic responsibility
and commitment to community development.
It encourages young people to
contribute real work for society, she
said.
Virginia Murray, deputy chief of
mission at the embassy in Yangon,
said the program would improve

understanding between the United


States and Myanmar.
Ma Thin Thu Thu Aung, 17, from
Yangon, travelled to the US from
March 30 to April 26 under the BYLP.
She said yesterday that while she admired the American educational system, she was less enthusiastic about
the way in which young Americans
treat their parents.
Children in grade six already
know about world history. They know
better than us. All we know is from
rote learning. I want better education
opportunities for our students, she
said. But I fel that children were rude
to their parents They are not like
Myanmar families.
Last year participants were chosen from Yangon, Mandalay, Sagaing,
Bago, Pyay, Mawlawmyine, Myitkyina,
Lashio and Taunggyi.
The deadline for the next batch is
in December, with applications available at the embassy in Yangon.

Myanmar Registration Number- 4/16567/2014


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Any unauthorised use, imitation, infringements or fraudulent
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6 News

THE MYANMAR TIMES APRIL 29, 2015

IWT puts renewed focus on


safety to win back passengers
Staff training and safety demonstrations are being deployed to rebuild trust in the state-run ferry operator

SHWEGU
THITSAR
khaingsabainyein@gmail.com

WEVE changed: Thats the message


Inland Water Transport is trying to get
across to sceptical passengers following the Aung Takon 3 ferry disaster, in
which scores lost their lives on March
13 off the coast of Rakhine State.
The state-run operator says it has
introduced safety measures for ferries
and river craft, including increased
safety equipment and training for
staff. These include the introduction
of aircraft-style demonstrations of
safety equipment on some vessels.
At least 72 people are known to
have perished in the Aung Takon 3
sinking, though it is feared the real
number may be much higher, owing to the severe overloading of the
ferry.
In the wake of the disaster, ferries following the same route, via
the treacherous Naungtaw Gyi and
Naungtaw Lay narrows, now take an
extra day, while passengers have reportedly deserted the ferry service in
droves because of safety fears.
U Win Thein, superintendent
of Inland Water Transport, said

73

Number of bodies recovered from the


Aung Takon 3 ferry disaster. The true
death toll is thought to be much higher

IN BRIEF
Repeat road offenders
to lose licences

Traffic police have announced a


crackdown that could lead to drivers
being taken off the road for up to four
years in the event of repeated offences.
Licences will be revoked if drivers
commit any of the four offences designated under traffic by-laws, said Police
Lieutenant Colonel Lin Htut of Yangons
No 2 Traffic Police.
Lt Col Lin Htut said the new rules
had been approved by the Road
Transport Administration Department,
known by its Myanmar acronym Ka
Nya Na, to supplement 14 existing
regulations governing the withdrawal
of licences. Police said offences of this
kind had proliferated recently.
The four new offences, effective as of
April 7, are: driving without a number
plate; driving a class of vehicle not
covered by the drivers licence; having
passengers hanging off the back or
on the roof of the vehicle; and ignoring
traffic signs.
In each case, a first offence will
render the driver liable to a six to 12
months suspension, rising to four
years for repeated offences. Toe Wai
Aung, translation by Emoon

EU focuses on traffic planning

A survivor from the sinking of the Aung Takon 3 ferry is carried away for treatment after arriving at Kyaukpyu jetty in
Rakhine State on March 14. Photo: AFP

yesterday his department had


launched an intensive focus on safety since the sinking of Aung Takon 3.
This has included extra training
for staff, with workshops held in Yangon, Mandalay, Monywa, Sittwe and
Mawlamyine.
The training will help them react
to a wide variety of scenarios, such
as if the ship overturns, sinks, or is
stranded on a sandbank, or a passenger is lost overboard, or the outbreak
of fire, he said.

Staff will be trained to assist passengers to follow orders


from the captain in an emergency, including when to abandon
ship. We will also give training to
passengers.
Demonstrations of the use of lifejackets have already begun on the
Cherry craft that links Pansodan and
Dala.
Every route operated by Inland
Water Transport already has lifejackets. But many passengers dont know

how to use them, so we are performing demonstrations every day on the


Cherry, which carry up to 1200 passengers, just like flight attendants do
on aircraft, he said, adding that staff
on the Cherry ferries also conduct
emergency drills.
The number of lifejackets provided is 10 percent greater than the
number of passengers, officials say,
but until recently no training was
provided in their use. Translation
by Kyawt Darly Lin and Emoon

Doctors to treat former UNA testing waters


political prisoners
with upcoming meet
SHWE YEE SAW MYINT
poepwintphyu2011@gmail.com

YE MON
yeemontun2013@gmail.com

LOCAL doctors are working with a


Danish organisation set up to combat torture to care for former political prisoners. The 51 general practitioners will provide healthcare and
psychosocial support for up to 500
former prisoners who have experienced physical and/or emotional
trauma. The training is a joint effort
between the GPs Society and the
Dignity Institute of Denmark.
Further capacity-building workshops were held for GPs in Yangon
and Mandalay yesterday.
Dr Myint Oo, a member of the
GPs Society, told The Myanmar
Times, The project plans to extend
its network in collaboration with
new partners to care for torture survivors, develop proposals and seek
potential donors.
He added that in the first phase,
30 GPs would treat 70 former political
prisoners selected by the Assistance
Association for Political Prisoners.
Dr Myint Oo said some patients
were afraid to seek medical treatment. They were suffering from ailments including hepatitis, hypertension and diabetes resulting from
their incarceration. One patient under treatment had already died, he
said.
The Danish organisation will
provide up to US$100 per patient to

AN opposition group is set to defy a


warning to avoid contact with unlawful associations, which is banned
under a colonial-era law.
The United Nationalities Alliance,
a grouping of eight parties that contested the 1990 general election, is
organising a conference for the second week of May to discuss a range
of controversial issues, including
progress toward a nationwide ceasefire agreement.
UNA member U Aye Thar Aung
of the Rakhine National Party told
The Myanmar Times yesterday that
the alliance would discuss the violent
police crackdown on student demonstrators at Letpadan on March 10
that resulted in hundreds of arrests.
Scores of students and their supporters await court hearings that
could condemn them to decades in
prison. The UNA has expressed support for the students position.
We want to hold the national
conference as soon as possible. It
will discuss the draft framework
for the political dialogue as well
as the crackdown on the student
protestors, he said.
In February, the Union Election
Commission (UEC) warned the UNA,
which has links with the opposition
National League for Democracy, not
to engage with sensitive issues. The

A participant speaks at the launch of


a program to help treat former political
prisoners in Yangon on April 27. Photo:
Aung Htay Hlaing

cover treatment costs.


According to the AAPP, Myanmar
has more than 170 political prisoners, with more than 300 others on
trial for political offences.
AAPP counsellor U Kyaw San
said, Political prisoners receive
moral support from our association,
but now family doctors will be able
to care for them so that their physical health will improve as well.

UEC also warned that inviting ethnic


group and student protester representatives to the conference could
violate the ban on political parties
contacting unlawful associations.
Weve formed a committee for
the students issue, the workers issue
and the peace process. We dont care
about the warning of the UECs chair.
We will continue to discuss these issues in the conference, said U Aye
Thar Aung.

We dont care
about the warning
of the UECs chair.
We will continue to
discuss these issues.
U Aye Thar Aung
UNA member

Ethnic leaders and activists have


long called for the repeal of the 1908
Unlawful Association Act which they
say inhibits peace talks and political dialogue. A senior adviser for the
Myanmar Peace Center, who requested anonymity, said, If parliament
doesnt amend this act, the government will keep using it.

Better traffic planning could emerge


from a new program funded by the European Union and the Italian city Turin,
Yangon city planners say. U Win Hlaing
Htun, deputy head of the civil planning
department of the Yangon City Development Committee, was speaking at a
workshop on Sustainable Urban Mobility Planning held on April 27.
ITHACA (Information Technology for
Humanitarian Assistance, Cooperation
and Action) and the Italian NGO CESVI
are also involved in the US$961,705
project, which started last February 1
and will conclude on January 31, 2017.
The project involves improving the
management and analysis of Yangons
traffic and sharing technology and
methods of problem-solving and education, said U Win Hlaing Htun.
We will conduct workshops, education, broadcasting, and send staff to
Italy to study technology and methods.
Training will be provided to 40 traffic
police in GIS technology for traffic, he
said.
A pilot scheme for the project will be
conducted in Tarmwe and Thingangyun
townships.
It is very difficult to change the
entire transportation system immediately, said U Win Hlaing Htun. Aye
Nyein Win

Bus boss urges more safety checks

Buses plying highways out of Nay Pyi


Taw should be checked for safety now
that the rains are here, the capitals
chief transportation regulator said on
April 27. U Win Swe, chair of the Nay Pyi
Taw Supervisory Committee for Motor
Vehicles (Highway), said passengers
could depend on the safety checks.
U Win Swe issued his warning as the
highway bus industry approaches the
first anniversary of the Yar Zar Min disaster, when a bus of that line plunged
from a highway bridge on May 12, 2014,
killing 14 passengers and injuring 29
more, after leaving Nay Pyi Taw. The
tragedy took place in blinding rain.
In an interview with The Myanmar
Times, U Win Swe said passenger
numbers were expected to fall with the
onset of the monsoon season. Bus
lines have to use the profits they make
in the summer to tide them over the
rainy season, he said.
The Nay Pyi Taw Supervisory Committee for Motor Vehicles (Ma Hta Tha)
supervises 18 bus lines based in the
capital and 52 lines based in other
states and regions that connect with
Nay Pyi Taw. Some 230 to 250 buses
leave Nay Pyi Taw daily, while the number of passengers varies from about
4000 to 6000.
U Win Swe said the profitability of
highway bus companies had grown
more precarious as more companies
started up. Htoo Thant, translation by
Thiri Min Htun

News 7

www.mmtimes.com

Views

Ethics, merit and Buddhism

KEY feature of Buddhist


practice is generating
merit. Merit is primarily
cultivated through the
performance of ethical actions and is largely based upon metaphysical assumptions grounded in
Buddhist philosophy. Most Buddhists
do not aspire to awakening in this
life but aim to generate enough merit
so that in a future life they might be
born with the necessary conditions
available for them to renounce the
world and join the Sangha.
The idea of merit (punna/pon)
implies an auspicious or fortunate act.
A wholesome (kusala/kutho) action
one based upon generosity, compassion and wisdom is described as one
that generates merit. These are actions
that purify the mind and lead to good
fortune. This good fortune could occur
in this life or the next.
Acts based upon greed, hatred and
delusion are considered unwholesome (akusala/akutho). They are
described as inauspicious and lacking
in merit. These actions do not create
merit, and have negative outcomes. As
we might expect, Buddhists are keen
to perform auspicious actions that produce merit, such as through generosity
or giving, known as dana, and ethical
conduct, or virtue, known as sila.
The most meritorious act is that of
giving, primarily by making offerings
to Buddhist monks. The Burmese
term for a monk is pongyi, one who
has great merit. The Burmese term
pon is derived from the punna. The
Buddhist Sangha, the monastic community, are a great field of merit
(punna-khetta). By making offerings
to Buddhist monks one generates
great merit. It is more meritorious to
give to a monk than to an ordinary
person. This is due in part to the
assumed ethical behaviour of the
monastic, and their status in terms of
the generation of merit. The Buddhist
monastic community is required to
make itself available every day to
receive food from the lay community.
By receiving food and other offerings by the lay community, a monk
is a field of merit. The presence of a
monk at a wedding or funeral serves
the same function. These occasions
become opportunities for the generation of merit.
In the wider context of Buddhist
thought, and in a slightly more
philosophically sophisticated

Buddhists gild gold leaf onto Buddha images at Shwedagon Pagoda on April 2. Photo: AFP

understanding, the act of giving may


be understood as a practice that lessens attachment, particularly attachment to the notion of a permanent
and enduring self, or atta/atman.
The texts of the Pali canon in general talk of the great fruit and profit
that arises from an act of giving. They
also warn that the way in which one
makes an offering has an effect on the
merit it produces. If the gift is given
with the thought of a reward, the fruit
and result of that act of given will be
much less than one who gives without
selfish motivations (Anguttaranikaya, IV 60-63). In fact, the mind
of the person who gives the gift is of
some considerable importance, and
those who make even a small offering
with a pure mind get considerable
merit. Even if someone has nothing
to give, a person can still rejoice in
anothers act of giving, and this itself
will generate merit.
In some cases the idea of merit
is used in a political context. The
turning-over of the alms bowl (pattam nikkujjeyya/tha beit hmaut) is
an act whereby a monk might show
displeasure with a lay person by
refusing his or her offering. There is
also a more controversial act whereby

PAUL
FULLER
newsroom@mmtimes.com

a monk refuses offerings from someone he disagrees with politically and


therefore prohibits the acquisition
of merit to an individual or group.
Of course, the state itself is often
involved in the generation of merit

Only by giving and


performing ethical
actions with a mind
based in metta can
the benefits of the
activities namely,
the generation of
merit be acquired.

through supporting the Sangha and


by constructing Buddhist monuments. These acts would also legitimate power in a Buddhist society.
Merit can also be generated
through ethical conduct. Primarily this entails the adoption of five
precepts, or five virtues (panca-sila)
by the Buddhist. These five are to
refrain from harming living creatures,
to refrain from taking what is not
given, to refrain from sexual misconduct, to refrain from false speech and
to refrain from intoxicants that cause
heedlessness.
The first precept involves refraining from harming any sentient being.
This includes animals and insects, but
not plants. In the description of this
precept in the Pali canon it is important to note that intention (cetana)
is heavily emphasised. Buddhism
understands the notion of intention
as being central to the generation
of actions that have consequences
(karma/kamma).
The first precept does not mean
that most Buddhists are vegetarian,
and there is some evidence that the
Buddha accepted meat in his alms
bowl. If one does not intend to kill
the animal for food, then there is no

harm, in karmic terms, in eating it.


In the Buddhist texts we find it said
that food is blameless if a monk has
not seen, heard or suspected that the
creature has been specifically killed
for him (Majjhima-nikaya, II 368-71).
A monk is intended to live on alms
placed in his alms bowl and acts as a
field of merit by accepting such food.
He should therefore accept whatever
is offered.
If one does not intend to kill a
living being, there are no negative
consequences. It is for this reason that
vegetarianism is not common in Buddhist Asia, and that the eating of meat
does not contravene the first precept,
or hinder the generation of merit.
An important point to note then
in Buddhist ethics is that responsibility for ones actions are based in what
one intends to do. The first precept
raises certain other issues. In general
in Asian Buddhist culture abortion
is seen as breaking this precept. On
the one hand rebirth as a human is
seen as great opportunity to achieve
awakening and traditionally a Buddhist would not favour abortion.
Added to this is the ancient idea that
the living being is considered present
in the womb soon after conception.
The other precepts can be analysed in
a similar way.
The point in this description is that
by adhering to the precepts one generates merit. By making offerings to the
Sangha, one generates merit. But it is
enshrined in the Pali canon that only
by giving and performing ethical actions with a mind based in metta can
the benefits of the activities namely,
the generation of merit be acquired.
The generation of merit rests upon
the logic of Indian karmic theory,
in which actions have a metaphysical basis. Indian philosophers came
to the conclusion that all actions
have consequences. In most Indian
religions, including Buddhism, this is
an immutable law. Therefore, through
performing activities in which the
generation of merit is central, a Buddhist is participating in this same
understanding.
Paul Fuller has taught religious studies at
universities in Southeast Asia, Australia
and the United Kingdom. His research
interests include early Indian Buddhist
philosophy, the Buddhist ideas of Daw
Aung San Suu Kyi, and ethnocentric
Buddhism in Myanmar and Sri Lanka.

8 THE MYANMAR TIMES APRIL 29, 2015

Business
Banks expand
corporate activities
AYE THIDAR KYAW
ayethidarkyaw@gmail.com
IN a further major expansion of the
banking sector, domestic banks have
now opened kyat-denominated dealing services for corporate banking.
The Central Bank allowed the first
three foreign banks to start operating
in Myanmar earlier this month, but has
imposed tight restrictions intended to
ensure that local lenders would not
be swept aside or swallowed up. Foreign lenders may not engage in retail
banking and are restricted to lending
foreign exchange to foreign companies
and to Myanmar banks. The foreign
banks may deal only in four currencies
and have been barred from hiring staff
from local banks.
The foreign banks are the Bank of
Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ and Sumitomo
Mitsui Banking Corporation, both of
Japan, and Singapores Oversea-Chinese Banking Corp (OCBM).
Six other banks are expected to be
admitted at a later date.
The entry of the foreign institutions
may not be a threat to local banks, but
is seen as a spur to their further efforts
and expansion.
Cooperative Bank managing director
U Pe Myint said CB Bank would provide
corporate services in kyat as a first step.
The bank will exchange currency in
its customer accounts with its partner
banks, the Bank of Tokyo Mitsubishi UFJ

As foreign banks are


much stronger than
us, we need to build a
bridge to customers.
U Than Lwin
KBZ consultant

and OCBC.
I understand some foreign customers have already opened accounts with zero balance in those
banks, he said.
Staff training has begun, but
such matters as loans and expansion
plans have not yet been discussed
and will not begin soon, he added,
saying that the interest rate for local businesses would be 13 percent
when it becomes available.
The Central Bank allowed foreign
banks to offer some banking activities
on a wholesale, international and corporate basis for foreign corporations
and consortia, but not for individuals.
An official of a state-owned bank
said domestic banks could benefit
from a spill-over effect resulting from
the entry of foreign banks. This could
mean more liquidity and fiercer competition. On the other hand, there are
more options and services for domestic firms. They dont need to rely on
domestic banks only, he said.
According to an announcement
from BTMU last week, its Yangon
branch will provide full banking services, including deposits, loans and
foreign exchange, to foreign companies and domestic banks operating in
Myanmar.
U Than Lwin, a senior consultant with Kanbawza Bank, said
staff training and technology were
among the benefits of partnering
with foreign banks.
His bank has signed a corporate
banking agreement with Sumitomo
Mitsui Banking Corporation and Thais
Siam Commercial Bank, and maintains correspondent links with other
foreign banks not yet granted a banking licence in Myanmar.
As foreign banks are much stronger than us, we need to build a bridge
to customers, such as dealing in local
currency that the foreign banks cant
do, he said.

Japanese and local officials cut the ceremonial rope on November 30, 2013, breaking ground on the Thilawa SEZ. Photo: Boothee

Eight companies set to begin


operations in Thilawa SEZ
KO KO AUNG
pmkokoaung@gmail.com
HTIN LINN AUNG
htynlynnaung@gmail.com
THILAWA Special Economic Zone, less
than an hours drive from downtown
Yangon, is about to become operational. It will be the first of the countrys
three SEZs to get under way. The other
two are Kyaukpyu in Rakhine State and
Dawei, Tanintharyi State.
Daw Than Than Thwe, joint secretary of the Thilawa SEZ Management Committee (TSEZMC), said
yesterday that 41 companies had
already signed up to occupy the
400-hectare initial phase.
Eight of them will commence operations by late June, and others will start
manufacturing by the end of the year,
she told The Myanmar Times.
The management committee is
owned by the Myanmar government,
which has a 10 percent stake in the
zone. The Japanese government also
has a 10pc stake through the Japan

International Cooperation Agency


(JICA), while a Myanmar private consortium, Myanmar Thilawa SEZ Holdings Public Limited, controls 41pc, and
a Japanese private consortium the rest
through the MMS Thilawa Development Company.
The Japanese and Myanmar governments have taken an active part
in developing the zone, and Japanese
workers are stationed there to support
companies from Japan. The enterprise
is considered to be a joint venture between Japan and Myanmar.
The zone occupies 2400 hectares
southwest of Thanlyin. Myanmar Japan Thilawa Development (MJTD), a
joint venture between Japan and Myanmar, is in charge of development and
management and is currently soliciting
companies to set up in a 189-hectare
section that comprises the first phase
of the project. MJTD is owned 49pc
jointly by three major Japanese trading houses Marubeni, Sumitomo and
Mitsubishi and JICA.
The 189-hectare section under

construction within the 400-hectare


first phase of the project is going to
finish at the end of June, said Daw
Than Than Thwe.
There are 21 Japanese companies,
five Myanmar companies, four Taiwanese, three Thai and two Chinese companies, and one each from the United
States, Sweden, Australia, Malaysia,
Singapore and Hong Kong, according
to state-owned media reports yesterday.
Problems remain, however. In
early days the project was dogged by
protests from local farmers, and one
foreign investor, who requested anonymity, questioned the reliability of
the electricity supply.
The American beverage container
producer Ball Corporation and a Japanese auto parts manufacturer became
the first companies to sign contracts
to invest in the Thilawa zone in June
2014. The other investor is Koyo Radiator Company, which produces car parts.
Thilawas initial phase will be
competed in 2016 and is hoped to
generate 50,000 jobs.

US offers path to redemption for cronies


GUY DINMORE

SU PHYO WIN

MYANMAR officials and the business


community yesterday expressed hope
that the lifting of US sanctions against
prominent industrialist U Win Aung
last week would open the door to an influx of US investment and the removal
from Washingtons blacklist of other
tycoons linked to the former military
regime.
An industry insider who asked not
to be identified said the US Treasury
was considering a submission by U Zaw
Zaw and his Max Myanmar business
empire which has interests ranging
from gems to construction, tourism and
banking. He is also chair of the Myanmar Football Federation.
U Win Aung and his two companies,
Dagon International Ltd and Dagon
Timber Ltd, were the first to be taken
off the blacklist since the Obama administration started to ease a near-total
ban on business with Myanmar in 2012.

Apart from leading a major conglomerate involved in timber, rubber,


energy and construction, U Win Aung
is also president of the Federation of
Chambers of Commerce and Industry
(UMFCCI), a role that brings him into
frequent contact with foreign investors.
A 2007 US diplomatic cable published by Wikileaks described him as a
a regime crony who had given financial support to the former military regime that stepped aside in 2011.
U Maung Aung, a senior advisor to
the Ministry of Commerce, told The
Myanmar Times that the federation
would now be in a better place to promote business relations with the US.
I think it is a very hopeful sign. In
the past although a lot of businessmen
wanted to do business in Myanmar,
since the president was on the backlist
they could not sign a memorandum of
understanding with the federation, he
said.
U Maung Aung said he was confident that US trade and investment
would increase with the move.
Asked if the believed other so-called
cronies would be removed from the
list of Specially Designated Nationals
(SDNs), he replied, We cant say the

U Win Aung. Photo: Aung Htay Hlaing

rest of people on the SDN list will be


removed soon like him, as Win Aung
is the exception as UMFCCI president
and he is promoting trade and investment with other countries.
The US Treasury noted that U Win
Aung and his two companies were originally sanctioned in 2009 for providing
services to the former Burmese regime.
It said in a statement that they were
delisted as U Win Aung had taken

steps to support reform in Burma. It


gave no further details.
The United States Government will
continue to support reform in Burma.
Going forward, additional listings or
de-listings will be pursued as appropriate based on designated individuals
and entities actions, the Treasury said.
Vicky Bowman, director of the
Myanmar Centre for Responsible
Business (MCRB) and a former UK
ambassador to Myanmar, said U Win
Aungs Dagon company and U Zaw
Zaws Max Myanmar were among the
top nine companies in MCRBs 2014
Pwint Thit Sa report on Myanmar
company transparency.
As with the other leading companies on that list, they have engaged actively with the process and participated
in ongoing discussions with MCRB.
There was a very obvious difference in
the quality of their engagement, transparency and understanding of what
responsible business means compared
to companies owned by other SDNs on
the list, Ms Bowman told The Myanmar Times.
Obviously there is always room for
Dagon to improve, for example through
greater transparency on land issues

and other human rights impacts that


the company have, so we hope they will
strive even harder in 2015, she added.
She said U Win Aung had been
very supportive of the objectives and
work of MCRB, both as president of the
Chamber, but also in light of Dagons
involvement in the Thilawa special economic zone.
U Zaw Naing Thein, chair of the Investment Promotion Committee of the
UMFCCI, called U Win Aungs delisting
very positive.
Others on the list could be removed
soon if they followed the correct path,
he said. This involved commitments to
cleaning up corruption, and engaging
in transparency and clean corporate
governance, he said.
Some complain that the US delisting criteria themselves are not transparent. The SDN list is maintained
by the Treasurys Office of Foreign
Assets Control (OFAC). The State Department last week indicated a path
of redemption that involved positive
steps and changed behavior could
lead to removal. More than 100 names
remain listed, prohibiting their business dealings with the US and entities
and individuals.

BUSINESS EDITOR: Guy Dinmore | guydinmore@gmail.com

Japan plans nuclear


power revival

Apple pleases with


profits and payouts

BUSINESS 10

BUSINESS 11

Exchange Rates (Apr 28 close)


Currency
Euro
Malaysia Ringitt
Singapore Dollar
Thai Baht
US Dollar

Kayin industry zone seeks growth


The Japanese-owned Fulltex
Sweater factory, inaugurated in
a Kayin State industrial zone on
April 25, is awaiting approval
to operate. Photo: Thiri Lu

SU PHYO
WIN
suphyo1990@gmail.com

OVERCOMING logistical barriers,


a new 40-hectare (100-acre) industrial park has opened for foreign
investors in Kayin State. The future
of the Hpa-an industrial zone, set
up in 2011, initially looked bleak because of local instability and electricity shortages, said U Zaw Min, the
states chief minister.
The UMH industrial park, developed by the UMH Company, opened
in the industrial zone on April 25
with the inauguration of the fully
Japanese-owned Fulltex Sweater
factory, which is awaiting Myanmar
Investment Commission approval to
operate.
Daw Myat San Wynn, managing director of UMH, said the zone
was at the crossroads of the Greater
Mekong Subregion corridor and the
ASEAN Highway, and close to the
Thanlwin River. But many investors

were taking a wait-and-see attitude


because development was still in its
early stages.
The ASEAN Highway is nearing
completion. Once it is open, we can
export from Thai ports as well as
through Yangon. It takes three weeks
to export via Yangon because customs clearance takes a week and because of the need to transit through
Singapore. In Thailand, clearance

takes only a day, and there is no need


for transit, she said.
Chief Minister U Zaw Win said,
The Hpa-an industrial zone was intended to be completed within five
years, but was held back by lack of
electricity supply and regional instability. But now the logistical structure is much improved and the region is stable.
Daw Myat San Wynn said rental

costs in the industrial park were


about US$20 to $30 per square metre, but her company would help investors with logistics, electricity, water supply and labour recruitment.
Hpa-an industrial zone itself
covers nearly 400 hectares (1000
acres), but is currently home to
only three large factories and a few
smaller concerns.
Fulltex Sweaters employs nearly
3000 workers, including skilled migrant labour from Mae Sot and Bangkok and less experienced local labour
undergoing vocational training, said
Daw Myat San Wynn.
We import raw materials from
Korea, China, Thailand and Japan,
and export only to Japan. We are trying to finance wage increases by reducing running costs and enhancing
manufacturing rates, but the government should help us by cutting taxes
and logistical costs, she said.
Koichi Inoue, country manager
of Nippon Steel & Sumikin Bussan
Corporation, said, As an important
trade partner of UMH, we appreciate
the cooperation in Myanmar and the
location of Hpa-an with its links to
Bangkok.

Workers build in the UMH industrial


park in Hpa-an industrial zone,
Kayin State. Set up in 2011, the
zone has seen only a handful of
factories built. Photo: Thiri Lu

Buying
K1155
K302
K798
K33
K1080

Selling
K1185
K315
K820
K35
K1088

Statoil
to sign
contract
AUNG SHIN
koshumgtha@gmail.com
THE signing of production-sharing
contracts (PSC) for offshore oil and gas
blocks is nearing its conclusion as the
Norwegian oil giant Statoil is set to formalise its agreement tomorrow.
A total of 19 international oil companies were awarded rights for the exploration and production of oil and gas
in 20 of 30 blocks in the 2013 offshore
bidding round. Signing began last December.
Norway-based Statoil, partnering
with US-based ConocoPhillips, will
sign in Nay Pyi Taw a PSC for deepwater block AD-10 off Rakhine, said an
official from the Ministry of Energy
(MOE) yesterday.
No date has yet been given for the
signing of the remaining contract, for
shallow-water block M-7 which was
awarded to Australian companies ROC
Oil and Tap Oil.
Statoil and ConocoPhillips received
permission from the Myanmar Investment Commission (MIC) in February
for deepwater block AD-10, which has
an area of 9000 square kilometres in
depths of up to 2000 metres.
This is a large and virtually unexplored area in a basin with a proven
petroleum system and thick sedimentary deposits, said Erling Vgnes, senior vice president for Statoil in a recent
press release.
The Norwegian multinational oil
and gas company is operating upstream activities in more than 30 countries worldwide. ConocoPhillips is the
worlds largest independent E&P company based on production and proved
reserves.
A total of 18 PSCs have been signed
with Oil India, Ophir, Berlanga, BG
Group, Woodside Energy, TRG, Canadian Foresight Group, Reliance Industries, Eni and Petrovietnam, as well as
oil giants Chevron, Shell and Total.
Foreign capital brought in by the oil
and gas sector amounts to nearly US$17
billion, including $2.6 billion in the
2014-15 financial year to end-January.

10 International Business

THE MYANMAR TIMES APRIL 29, 2015

TOKYO

IN BRIEF

Japan looks to nuclear for


one-fifth of electricity supply
ONE-FIFTH of Japans electricity
supply should come from nuclear
power generation, the countrys industry ministry said yesterday, despite widespread opposition in the
aftermath of the Fukushima disaster.
With none of the nations viable nuclear reactors in operation,
the target indicates an intention to
bring most, if not all of them, back
on line.
Japans intended energy mix has
been a subject of hot debate for
months, not least because without
it, Tokyo has been unable to make
international commitments to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
In its proposal, which will be debated by the government for final
policy formulation by the end of
next month, the industry ministry
said by 2030 about 20-22 percent
of the countrys electricity should
come from nuclear power.
Supply from renewables such
as solar and wind power should be
doubled to 22-24pc.
The industry ministry favours
nuclear power as a way to cut emission of carbon dioxide and other
greenhouse gases, despite a groundswell of public opposition since the
nuclear crisis in Fukushima.
Reactors at the Fukushima Daiichi plant went into meltdown
in March 2011 after a tsunami
swamped their cooling systems
setting off the worst atomic disaster
since Chernobyl in 1986.
Japans entire stable of nuclear power stations was gradually
switched off following the disaster,
while tens of thousands of people
were evacuated due to concerns
about radiation exposure.
Many Fukushima-area residents
are still unable to return to their
homes and scientists have warned

London
UK economy slows

Britains economy grew slower than


expected in the first quarter of 2015,
official data showed yesterday, delivering a blow to the government just nine
days before a general election.
Gross domestic product expanded
by 0.3 percent between January and
March compared with GDP growth of
0.6pc in the final quarter of 2014, the
Office for National Statistics (ONS)
said in an initial estimate. Analysts
consensus had been for a slowdown to
only 0.5pc in the first quarter.
GDP, the main indicator of economic growth, is the last major piece
of data on the British economy before
Britain votes in a knife-edge general
election on May 7.
The ONS said that while output increased in services by 0.5pc in the first
quarter, the other three main industrial
groupings in the economy decreased,
with construction falling by 1.6pc,
production by 0.1pc and agriculture by
0.2pc.

Paris
French jobless number hits new
record in March

Protesters criticise Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe as well as the governments nuclear energy policy during a
demonstration in Tokyo on April 25. Photo: AFP

that some areas around the plant


may remain uninhabitable for decades or more.
Pro-nuclear premier Shinzo Abe
and the countrys business sector
have however since pushed to restart plants that once supplied more
than one-quarter of Japans electricity, as a plunging yen had sent energy import bills through the roof.
Mr Abes government has
pledged to lower the countrys dependence on nuclear power and
promote so-called green energy,
but insists that heavy reliance on
renewables is unrealistic because of
cost and stability issues.

Japans pro-nuclear lobby said


last week that 2015 would be the
year reactors are restarted, despite
public wariness.
Of the 48 surviving reactors, four
reactors were decommissioned on
April 27 after failing to meet new,
stricter safety standards, and another
will be permanently taken out of operation tomorrow, Jiji Press reported.
But the 20-22pc supply figure
indicates that most, if not all, of the
remaining 43 reactors will have to be
restarted, though most have yet to receive the green light from regulators.
The ministrys plan came a day after its latest estimate said that nuclear

power generation is the cheapest energy source, beating fossil fuels and
renewables.
The latest estimate says nuclear
power would cost 10.1 yen (about
8.5 US cents) per kilowatt-hour in
2030, up from 8.9 yen in the 2011
estimate.
It took into account the costs of
boosting safety at plants following
the 2011 disaster and also lowered
risk of accidents as a result of tougher safety measures.
The figure is cheaper than the 12.9
yen for coal-fired power generation,
16.4 yen for solar, and up to 21.9 yen
for wind, said the ministry. AFP

TOKYO

The number of unemployed in France


hit a new record in March at 3.51
million people, up 0.4 percent from
February, with young people especially
hard-hit.
The news comes as the third anniversary of President Francois Hollandes
election approaches. He has pledged not
to seek re-election in 2017 if he does not
succeed in reversing the trend of everincreasing unemployment.
Labour Minister Francois Rebsamen in a statement on April 27
chose to focus on the first quarter figure which he said showed the smallest
increase over three months in jobless
workers since early 2011. He said
it was a sign that the governments
measures are beginning to bear fruit.
While the INSEE national statistics office has forecast more positive
economic growth for France this year,
it says it will be insufficient to drive
down the countrys stubbornly high
unemployment. The jobless rate was
forecast to hit a 20-year record high of
10.2pc in mainland France.
AFP

LONDON

Exploding airbags dent Honda BP profits slide on


plunging oil prices
profits as recall costs soar
HONDA said yesterday its fiscal-year
net profit fell 8.9 percent to US$4.4
billion as Japans number-three automaker grapples with soaring recall
costs, including from an exploding airbag crisis linked to at least five deaths.
The Civic maker had downgraded
its profit forecasts twice before the
results were published as it warned
the airbag scandal at supplier Takata
would take a toll on its bottom line, as

Honda Motors executive vice president


Tetsuo Iwamura bows to start the
companys fourth quarter financial
result briefing at its headquarters in
Tokyo yesterday. Photo: AFP

well as falling demand in Japan and


the worlds biggest vehicle market,
China.
The company said it earned 522.7
billion yen ($4.4 billion) in the year
through March worse than its most
recent estimate of a 545 billion yen
profit and missing analyst expectations while operating profit dropped
13pc to 651.6 billion yen.
Annual sales rose 6.8pc to 12.6 trillion yen.
For the current fiscal year, Honda
forecast a net profit of 525 billion yen
on sales of 14.5 trillion yen, under a
new system of accounting standards
the carmaker has adopted.
The company said its fiscal fourthquarter operating profit dropped
about one-third, while it took a $425
million recall-related charge in the
October-December quarter.
In February, Honda said its president, company veteran Takanobu Ito,
would step down as the company
works through the recall crisis, which
it cited as a key reason for its declining profit.
Hondas airbag recalls and others
involving its Fit compact car and Vezel
SUV diluted the positive impact of
a sharp decline in the yen, which has
inflated profits for major Japanese exporters, including the auto industry.

The results were due primarily


to an increase in selling, general and
administrative ... expenses including
quality-related expenses and a decline
in automobile unit sales in Japan, it
said. This was despite profit-increasing factors such as strong sales in Asia
and favourable currency effects associated with depreciation of the Japanese
yen.
About 20 million vehicles produced by some of the worlds biggest
automakers are being recalled due
to the risk their Takata-made airbags
could deploy with excessive explosive power, spraying potentially fatal
shrapnel into the vehicle.
Honda recalls account for about
13 million of that total. The companys
biggest domestic rivals Toyota and Nissan, which report their results over the
next couple of weeks, are also among
the global automakers affected by the
airbag crisis.
The weak yen has had a big impact on Japans auto industry. Strong
demand in North America has also
benefited automakers, which helped
to offset stagnant markets, including
in Japan, where the impact of the tax
rise [last year] dented consumer sentiment, said Hiroaki Mochida, an analyst at Marusan Securities.
AFP

BP yesterday announced profits fell


sharply in the first quarter of the year
on plunging oil prices but the UK energy giant still beat market expectations
as gains in refining and oil trading operations offset a slide in profits from
exploration and production.
BP reported first-quarter underlying replacement cost profit, the companys definition of net income, of
US$2.58 billion, down by nearly 20
percent from the same period last year
but up 15pc from the fourth quarter of
2014 and above analyst expectations of
$1.28 billion.
Bob Dudley, group chief executive,
said, We are resetting and rebalancing
BP to meet the challenges of a possible
period of sustained lower prices. Our
results today reflect both this weaker
environment and the actions we are
taking in response.
We are continuing to progress our
planned divestment program, we are
resetting our level of capital spending,
and we are addressing costs through
focusing on simplification and efficiency throughout BP, he added.
The company said that it would
maintain a quarterly dividend of 10
cents per ordinary share.
Brent crude oil prices averaged $55
a barrel in the first quarter of 2015, almost half the price of a year ago.
The results, however, were better

than expected, and BP shares rose by


nearly 1pc in early London trading
yesterday.
BPs downstream business made
$2bn in replacement cost profit in
the first quarter, compared with $794m
for the same period a year earlier. That
helped offset a fall in earnings from
BPs oil exploration operations.
Upstream result was significantly
affected by lower oil and gas prices as
well as weaker gas marketing and trading and $375m costs associated with
the cancellation of contracts for two
deepwater rigs in the Gulf of Mexico,
BP said.
The result reflects the stronger
overall refining environment, increased
refining optimisation and production
and improved marketing performance.
There was also a stronger contribution
from supply and trading than a year
earlier. Simplification and efficiency
programs also contributed to lower
costs in the downstream, BP said.
The results followed a UK government warning that it would step in to
prevent BP being acquired by a foreign
buyer in the event of a takeover bid.
The company has been linked with a
potential deal since the Gulf of Mexico
disaster in 2010.
BP is the first of the major oil firms
to report first-quarter earnings.
AFP with Myanmar Times

International Business 11

www.mmtimes.com
NEW YORK

Apple profit soars on


iPhone, China sales
APPLE has reported a sharp rise in its
quarterly profit, lifted by robust sales
of its iPhones and a jump in revenue
from China.
The California tech giant said on
April 27 that profit rose 33 percent
from a year ago to US$13.6 billion,
lifted by sales of 61 million iPhones
in the first three months of the year.
Revenue increased 27pc from the
same period a year ago to $58.01 billion, Apple said.
A major contributor was the expansion of iPhone sales in China.
Revenue for greater China leapt
71pc to $16.8 billion in the quarter, allowing the region to overtake Europe
as Apples second-largest market.
We are thrilled by the continued
strength of iPhone, Mac and the App
Store, which drove our best March
quarter results ever, said chief executive Tim Cook. Were seeing a higher
rate of people switching to iPhone
than weve experienced in previous
cycles, and were off to an exciting
start to the June quarter with the
launch of Apple Watch.
The results for the second fiscal
quarter exclude the new Apple smartwatch, which began deliveries last
week in nine countries.
Apple offered no figures for Apple
Watch sales, but Mr Cook said during

It's been really great


to see the reaction
of customers since
their watches
arrived.
Tim Cook
Apple CEO

Apple earnings
Quarterly profit
$ billions
18.0
13.6

10.2
7.7

8.5

Mar Jun Sept Dec


2014
Quarter ending

Mar
2015

Source : Apple

a conference call that the response


has been overwhelmingly positive.
Its been really great to see the
reaction of customers since their
watches arrived Friday, he said.
Apple said separately it was adding $50 billion to its share buyback
program and boosting its dividend, in
an apparent concession to shareholders fearing the company is stockpiling too much cash.
Apple said its board has increased
its share repurchase authorisation to
$140 billion from the $90 billion level
announced last year. The buybacks
increase value for shareholders by
reducing the number of outstanding
shares.
The board also approved an 11pc
increase in quarterly dividends to 52
cents per share.
The moves will only modestly
impact Apples cash reserves, which
rose to over $193 billion in the past
quarter.

We believe Apple has a bright future ahead, and the unprecedented


size of our capital return program
reflects that strong confidence, said
Mr Cook.
While most of our program will
focus on buying back shares, we
know that the dividend is very important to many of our investors, so
were raising it for the third time in
less than three years.
Apple, already the largest publicly
traded company by market value, saw
its shares rise in after-market trade by
1.5pc to $134.61 after the better-thanexpected results, pushing its capitalisation to more than $770 billion.
Brian White, analyst at Cantor
Fitzgerald, said the results were positive and suggest Apple is still growing
at a healthy pace.
Given the strength of this iPhone
cycle, expanded cash distribution,
and entry into the first new product category in five years with Apple Watch, we believe Apple remains
early in this transformational cycle,
he said in a note to clients.
Apples results come after hugely
successful launch last year of its
large-screen iPhones, helping it regain market share lost to rivals like
Samsung and others using the Google
Android platform.
Apples report showed a 40pc
jump in iPhone sales compared with
the same period a year ago. But iPad
sales slumped 23pc from a year ago
to 12.6 million units, with revenues
down 29pc.
Apple bounced up 1.8pc ahead of
its first earnings report as a member
of the blue-chip Dow. The tech giant
reported its second-quarter earnings
after the markets closed on April 27.
Apple has beaten profit estimates for
the past eight quarters, noted John
Plassard of Mirabaud Securities.
AFP

TOKYO

Japan semiconductor
maker in share plunge
TOKYO Electron shares plunged
almost 15 percent yesterday
morning as the Japanese semiconductor equipment maker and
rival Applied Materials scrapped
a multi-billion-dollar merger after US competition regulators
blocked it.
The Tokyo-listed shares faced
huge selling pressure from the
opening bell, dropping 14.58pc
to 6575.0 yen (US$55) following
the announcement on April 27.
In the US, Applied Materials
tumbled 8.39pc to $19.97. The
California-based firm said it had

called off its nearly $10 billion


bid for Tokyo Electron, first announced in 2013, after proposed
tweaks to the deal had failed to
convince antitrust officials at the
Department of Justice (DoJ). The
deal would have combined two
leading makers of semiconductor
manufacturing equipment.
The announcement came days
after cable and broadband internet giants Comcast and Time
Warner Cable scrapped plans for
a $45 billion mega-merger owing
to opposition from the DoJ.
AFP

SAN FRANCISCO

Google launches
patents marketplace
GOOGLE has announced it is setting up an online marketplace for
those who want to sell patents to
the internet giant.
We invite you to sell us your
patents, Google patent deputy
counsel Allen Lo said in a blog
post on April 27.
Mr Lo said the Patent Purchase Promotion is an experimental marketplace for patents
thats simple, easy to use, and
fast.
He noted that patent owners who want to sell often face
difficulties.
The usual patent marketplace can sometimes be challenging, especially for smaller
participants who sometimes end
up working with patent trolls,
he said.
Then bad things happen, like

lawsuits, lots of wasted effort,


and generally bad karma. Rarely
does this provide any meaningful benefit to the original patent
owner.
The new marketplace aims
to remove friction from the patent market and will include a
streamlined portal from May
8 through May 22 where patent
holders can tell Google about
patents theyre willing to sell at a
price they set.
As soon as the portal closes,
well review all the submissions,
and let the submitters know
whether were interested in buying their patents by June 26.
The deals should be completed by late August, Google said.
Google is limiting the project to
US patents and holders with a US
tax identification number. AFP

TRADEMARK CAUTIONARY NOTICE articles of metal for use in the drilling of offshore oil or materials. (International Class 40)
Statoil ASA, a company organized under the laws of
Norway and having its principal office at Forusbeen 50, of
4035 Stavanger, Norway is the owner and sole proprietor
of the following Trademarks :-

STATOIL

Myanmar Registration Numbers. 4/9042/2014 for


Intl Class 4, 4/9043/2014 for Intl Class 6,
4/9044/2014 for Intl Class 35, 4/9045/2014 for
Intl Class 36, 4/9046/2014 for Intl Class 37,
4/9047/2014 for Intl Class 39, 4/9048/2014 for
Intl Class 40, 4/9049/2014 for Intl Class 41,
4/9050/2014 for Intl Class 42

Myanmar Registration Numbers. 4/9051/2014 for


Intl Class 4, 4/9052/2014 for Intl Class 35,
4/9053/2014 for Intl Class 37, 4,9054/2014 for
Intl Class 39, 4/9055/2014 for Intl Class 40,
4/9056/2014 for Intl Class 42
Used in respect of : Oil, crude oil, refined oil, dry gas, natural gas condensates;
producer gas (synthesis gas); oils and greases for industrial
purposes. (International Class 4)
Offshore drilling platforms made primarily of metal;

gas wells. (International Class 6)

Marketing, distribution, wholesale, petroleum, gas,


lubricants, chemical products for industrial and scientific
purposes, alcohol (except alcoholic beverages), methanol.
(International Class 35)
Payment service for C02-quote; C02 financial
management services; emission trading; insurance and
financial services; capital investment; sponsorship.
(International Class 36)
Building, installation, maintaining and repairing services
related to oil-platforms and oil pipelines, oil and gas
production and refining facilities, oil and gas storage
facilities, gas pipelines and equipment related thereto,
offshore and subsea installations; drilling and servicing of oil
and gas wells; oil and gas well pumping; mining services; oil
sands mining, tests (inspection) for early damage diagnosis
in oil-field and oil conducting plant, equipment and systems;
setting up, supervision and bringing into operation of oil
and gas fields, installations for the extraction, transport,
storage and processing thereof, process and industrial plants
and installations, buildings, machinery and equipment.
(International Class 37)
Transportation of oil, petroleum, gas, transport of oil,
gas and oilsand by pipeline; storage of ships; distribution,
supply, transportation and storage of oil, petroleum, gas.
(International Class 39)
Refining of crude oil and processing of the products
of that refining, as well as processing of dry gas
and natural gas condensates; gasification of organic

Education; providing of training, corporate learning


programmes; arranging and conduction of seminars and
workshops; e-learning programmes; coaching [training];
providing online information and news; sporting and
cultural activities related to sponsorship. (International
Class 41)
Exploitation of oil and gas; oil-field exploitation; exploration
and field development services in the marketing of
petroleum industry; engineering services and research
related to deep-water technology; oil prospecting, planning
services related to building of oil-platforms; oil-well
testing; geo-seismic survey services; recordal of seismic
data; gravimetric monitoring; hydrocarbon exploration;
electromagnetic seabed logging; development and testing of
wind mills and wind power plants; computer programming
for others; scientific and technological services and research
and design relating thereto; industrial analysis and research
services; design, development and maintenance of internet
websites. (International Class 42)
Any unauthorized use, imitation, infringements or
fraudulent intentions of the above marks will be dealt
with according to law.
Tin Ohnmar Tun, Tin Thiri Aung &
The Law Chambers
Ph: 0973150632
Email:law_chambers@seasiren.com.mm
(For. Domnern Somgiat & Boonma,
Attorneys at Law, Thailand)
Dated. 29th April, 2015

12 THE MYANMAR TIMES APRIL 29, 2015

World

13

WORLD EDITOR: Fiona MacGregor

Hundreds of bodies found


in Nigeria as Boko Haram
violence resurges

National Guard
called out amid
Baltimore riots

WORLD 14

WORLD 14

CILACAP, INDONESIA

POKHARA/KATHMANDU

Death row families say final goodbye


as coffins arrive at Indonesian prison
THE families of two Australian convicts facing execution in Indonesia
paid an anguished final visit to their
loved ones yesterday, wailing in grief
as ambulances carrying empty white
coffins arrived at their prison.
The family members of Myuran
Sukumaran and Andrew Chan, ringleaders of the so-called Bali Nine
heroin trafficking group, arrived at
Nusakambangan prison calling for
mercy for their loved ones. Mr Sukumarans sister collapsed and had to be
carried.
Mr Chan and Mr Sukumaran are
among nine prisoners eight of
whom are foreigners, one Indonesian
facing death after authorities gave
them final notice of their executions.
The families were asked to say
their final goodbyes by yesterday
afternoon as signs were mounting
that the death sentences would carried out by the early hours of this
morning.
Australian media have published
photos of crosses that will be used
for the coffins, inscribed with todays
date, 29.04.2015.
Ambulances carrying the empty
white coffins arrived yesterday, at
the high-security prison where the
prisoners are awaiting their sentence,
said.
The convicts, who have been held
in isolation cells since the weekend,
also include nationals from Brazil,
the Philippines and Nigeria.
Indonesian President Joko Widodo has signalled his determination to
push on with the executions despite
mounting international condemnation.
Indonesian Attorney-General Muhammad Prasetyo said that authorities will not announce a date before
the executions.
The families of Mr Chan and
Mr Sukumaran, who had visiting
them frequently in recent days,
were unable to control their emotion as they arrived at Cilacap, the
town that serves as the gateway to
Nusakambangan.
Members of Mr Sukumarans family screamed and cried out mercy as

they walked in a slow procession to


the port.
Mr Sukumarans sister Brintha
wailed and called out her brothers
name, collapsing into the arms of
family members who had to carry
her.
Mr Chans mother was shielded by
family members but was clearly distraught as she passed waiting media.
Mr Chan, who like Mr Sukumaran
is in his 30s, married his Indonesian
girlfriend in a jailhouse ceremony
with family and friends on Nusakambangan on April 27, his final wish.
Death row convicts in Indonesia
can request spiritual counsellors in
their final hours, but the Australian
media said that Mr Chan and Mr
Sukumarans requests had been rejected, with Indonesian authorities
deciding to give them companions of
their choosing.
Last bit of dignity denied, Mr
Chans brother Michael told Australia
Fairfax Media in a text.
The family of Filipina convict
Mary Jane Veloso also arrived in
Cilacap en route to Nusakambagan to
pay a final visit but raced past waiting
reporters in a van.
As they got out of the vehicle, Filipino priest Father Harold Toledano
gave them each a blessing before they
headed to the island.
The family was so silent. Its really very sad. We see a kind of deep
pain, he said.
The day before Ms Velosos sixyear old son had looked confused and
frightened as he was led by his hand
to make one of his final visits to his
mother before her execution.
During the visit to Nusakambangan Island, his mother gently explained to six-year-old Mark Darren
and her second son, 12-year-old Mark
Danielle, that she would not be coming home.
She tried to explain again, Ms
Velosos elder sister Marites VelosoLaurente said during an interview
in Cilacap, the port town that is the
gateway to the island.
If Mumma does not go home, just
think Mumma is in heaven.

Ms Velosos two sons travelled


with their family from an impoverished community north of Manila to
hear a message almost impossible for
them to take in.
Ms Veloso, 30, was convicted of
trafficking heroin into Indonesia in
2009, but says her only crime was
to fall victim to international drug
gangs who are now threatening to kill
her family if they speak out.
Her case has drawn huge attention
in the Philippines, with supporters
calling for clemency at regular rallies
in Manila.
Jakarta is determined to press
ahead with the executions despite a
wave of global condemnation led by
United Nations Secretary General
Ban Ki-moon.
Australia has mounted a vigorous
campaign to save its citizens, who
have been on death row for almost
a decade, and Foreign Minister Julie
Bishop has said the executions should
be halted until a corruption investigation into judges who presided over
the case is complete.
However Mr Widodo, who is a
vocal supporter of the death penalty
for drug traffickers, dismissed the
request.
Philippine President Benigno
Aquino on April 27 asked Mr Widodo to show mercy, but Mr Prasetyo
said the execution of Ms Veloso will
go ahead. We will not change our
mind.
In Australia, celebrities including
Oscar-winner Geoffrey Rush released
a video yesterday urging Prime Minister Tony Abbott to fly to Indonesia
to help save the two men.
Protesters gathered outside the
Indonesian embassy in Manila, where
they have been holding regular candlelight vigils for Ms Veloso, calling
on Mr Widodo to change his mind.
He [Mr Widodo] wants to portray
himself as a strong leader but by executing an innocent woman he will
portray himself as an evil man, said
Sol Pillas, secretary-general of the
Filipino migrant workers advocacy
group Migrante.
AFP

Brintha Sukumaran, the sister of Australian drug convict and death row prisoner Myuran Sukumaran, breaks down after
arriving at Nusakambangan port in Cilalcap on April 28. Photo: AFP

IN PICTURES
Photo: AFP

Rescue
personnel
search for
survivors
amidst the
rubble in
Bhaktapur,
on the
outskirts of
Kathmandu,
on April 27,
two days
after a 7.8
magnitude
earthquake
hit Nepal.
KATHMANDU

Rescuers battle to reach remote quake


victims as UN says 8 million affected
TEAMS of rescue workers in Nepal struggled yesterday to reach
remote communities devastated by
the huge earthquake that has killed
at least 4310 people.
As the UN estimated 8 million
people have been hit by the disaster, Prime Minister Sushil Koirala
said getting help to some of the
worst affected areas was a major
challenge and that relief workers
had still not reached many of the
most damaged villages.
Mr Koirala told an emergency
all-party meeting the government
was sending desperately needed
tents, water and food supplies to
those in need.
But he said authorities were
overwhelmed by appeals for help
from remote Himalayan villages
left devastated by the April 25
7.8-magnitude quake.
Appeals for rescues are coming
in from everywhere, a statement
from Mr Koiralas office quoted
him as saying.
But we have been unable to initiate rescue efforts in many areas at
the same time due to lack of equipment and rescue experts.
With fears rising of food and
water shortages, Nepalis were
rushing to stores and petrol stations to stock up on essential supplies in the capital Kathmandu.
Home ministry spokesperson
Laxmi Prasad Dhakal said yesterday the official death toll had risen
to 4310, with a further 7953 known
to have been injured.
Officials had previously put the
death toll at 4010, making it the
quake-prone Himalayan nations
deadliest disaster in more than 80
years.
Another 73 people died in India. The toll in Chinas far western

region of Tibet, which neighbours


Nepal, rose to 25, the official Xinhua news agency said, citing the
areas disaster relief headquarters.
In Nepal, there are fears the
death toll could jump once rescuers discover the full extent of
devastation in villages outside
Kathmandu.
Three days after the quake hit,
rescue teams have still not reached
some of the worst-affected areas
of Lamjung, the site of the quakes
epicentre, around 77 kilometres (48
miles) west of the capital.
The situation here is not good.
So many have lost their homes.
They dont have enough water or
food, said Udav Prasad Timilsina,
the head official in the neighbouring district of Gorkha.
We havent even been able to
treat the injured. We are in urgent
need of essentials like food, water
... and medicines and tents. Rescuers are coming in, but we need
help.
The US State Department confirmed on April 27 that two of its

We havent even
been able to treat
the injured. We
are in urgent need
of ... food, water
and medicines and
tents.
Udav Prasad Timilsina
Distric official

citizens were among those killed


on Everest during an avalanche
prompted by the quake, adding that
they were aware of reports that two
further Americans had died.
Australias Foreign Minister
Julie Bishop confirmed that an Australian woman also perished on the
mountain.
Hundreds of mountaineers had
gathered at Everest at the start of
the annual climbing season, and the
real scale of the disaster there has
been difficult to evaluate so far.
Families who work in Kathmandu were packing onto buses,
some even sitting on the roofs, in
an exodus from the city, many for
their home villages to determine the
damage there.
Mothers clutching children and

men hauling bags were seen bargaining with drivers of the many
buses clogging the roads out of the
capital.
Long queues formed outside
petrol stations while supermarkets
were seeing a run on staples such as
rice and cooking oil.
Those who remained in the
capital were sleeping outdoors in
makeshift tents in parks and other
open spaces, many having lost their
houses and others too terrified to
return home after several powerful
aftershocks.
With just plastic sheets to protect them from the elements, many
were desperate for aid and information on what to do next.
There is just too much fear and
confusion, said Bijay Sreshtha, who

Nepal earthquake map


Eight million people have been affected by the quake,
the United Nations said Tuesday

Annapurna
8,091 m

Epicentre
7.8-magnitude
quake
April 25 11:56 am

CHINA

GANDAKI

Deaths: 4,310
Pokhara

Butwal

Aftershocks
4-5

Very Strong

5-6

Strong

6-7

Moderate
Source : USAID

Mt Everest
8,848 m

KATHMANDU

Hetauda
Intensity
Severe

INDIA

25

NEPAL
Baglung

CHINA

INDIA
73

30 km

Sindhuli
Garhi

fled to a park with his three children, wife and mother when the
quake hit.
The Nepalese rescuers were being joined by hundreds of foreign
aid workers from countries including China, India and the United
States.
Hospitals have been overwhelmed, with morgues overflowing and medics working flat out to
cope with an endless stream of victims suffering trauma or multiple
fractures.
Pledging US$10 million in relief
to help the victims, US Secretary of
State John Kerry said he had been
shocked by the gut-wrenching images of the death and destruction.
Australia said yesterday it was
raising its aid to $4.7 million and
sending a military plane to bring
relief supplies and evacuate its
stranded citizens.
But the lack of space at the countrys only international airport was
hampering efforts to bring in relief
by air.
Japans International Cooperation Agency said a disaster relief
team was making a third attempt
yesterday to enter Kathmandu, after being twice turned away from a
crowded airport on April 27.
The quake is a serious blow to
the economy of one of the worlds
poorest countries, already reeling
from a decade-long civil war that
ended in 2006.
Nepal and the rest of the Himalayas, where the Indian and Eurasia
tectonic plates collide, are particularly prone to earthquakes.
A 6.8-magnitude quake hit eastern Nepal in August 1988 killing 721
people, and a magnitude 8.1 quake
killed 10,700 people in Nepal and
India in 1934. AFP

Relief for tourists after


Pokhara flights resume
CATHERINE
TRAUTWEIN
newroom@mmtimes.com.mm

THE atmosphere at Nepals Pokhara


airport was one of chaos mingled with
relief as planes finally took off from
the tourist town where visitors had
been trapped since a 7.8 earthquake
hit the country on April 25.
Travellers who had faced days
of uncertainty and lack of information about when they would be
able to get flights to Kathmandu
and from there out of the country
cheered when the first Yeti Airlines
domestic flight touched down on the
tarmac at Pokhara on the afternoon
of April 27.
The aircraft had been on standby
in the capital waiting for the green
light to begin its shuttle missions, as
rumbling aftershocks continued to
send tremors through the ground,
and aircraft carrying emergency
workers stretched Kathmandus
Tribhuvan airport to capacity.
Confusion and misinformation
led some passengers to miss international flights out of Kathmandu,
which theyd booked after assurances that they would be able to fly from
Pokhara that morning.
Australian Jasmine Riley, 19, who
on the afternoon of April 27 was still
waiting for a seat on the Yeti Airlines
plane as it shuttled back and forth
between Pokhara and the capital,
said shed received a verbal agreement on April 26 that shed be able
to fly out of Pokhara at 9 am on April
27.
She had bought a connecting
flight due to leave Kathmandu for
Sydney at 1:30 pm, but it departed
while she was still stuck in Pokhara.
Its kind of hard because I just
havent known whats been going on
for the past few hours, she said.
Those who managed to get on the
first Yeti Airlines flights from Pokhara
arrived at Tribhuvan to witness the arrival of international rescue teams.
Large planes and helicopters
some from the Indian Air Force
loomed near the runway as the

Pokhara flight touched down. Men


in camouflage trooped into a gray
helicopter bearing its logo as the
relieved travellers made their way
from Yet Airlines craft.
Some of the passengers, hoping
to leave Nepal as soon as possible,
headed to their countrys embassies
where they joined other foreign nationals seeking shelter as they waited to fly out of the devastated city.
Foreigners and locals expressed
concerns that recovery operations
were not progressing as fast as they
hoped.
At the US embassy on April 27,
American physiotherapy intern
Kathryn Rodrigues, 21, told The Myanmar Times she had seen the military in Khatmandu but that she had
yet to witness proof of wide-scale
cleanup. Im hoping they stepped
up their game, she said.
Trekking company managing director Phanden Sherpa, whose home
village had been damaged by the
quake, echoed her concerns.
Nepals government helps, but
not that much. I hope the Nepal government and also other countries
will support [us], he said.
International aid has already
started arriving in the city, but in the
meantime locals have been offering
each other what support they can,
Mr Phuri Kitar Sherpa of Himalayan Friends Trekking has organised
a shelter on the same street as his
office using tents and tarps from his
company to construct temporary
housing in an open lot and supplying potable mineral water.
The makeshift camp provides a
point where people can access sustenance as well as medicines, which he
said he received from the US embassy. Fears are rising that disease will
start to spread in the ruined capital.
And he said people were already
running out of food and water.
The trekking company owner
also expressed fears for those living
in outlying areas, including his own
home village, which he said had
been devastated by the quake.
Right now, the government is
trying its best, but today I was in the
airport and I saw a lot of villages up
there in the mountain collapsed, he
said.
AFP

People evacuated from earthquake-hit Nepal disembark from an Indian Air Force
aircraft at Air Force Station Palam in New Delhi on April 26. Photo: AFP

14 World

THE MYANMAR TIMES APRIL 29, 2015

BALTIMORE

National Guard
deployed in
Baltimore
as race riots
follow funeral
THOUSANDS of police and National Guard troopers were ordered
to back up beleaguered officers in
Baltimore yesterday after riots triggered by anger over the death of a
black man in police custody.
After an evening of violence, officials said calm appeared to be returning to the city in the early hours
of yesterday morning.
At least 27 people were arrested
and 15 police injured as stone and
brick-throwing mobs, many of them
high school students, clashed with
law enforcement and attacked local
businesses on April 27.
The state of Maryland declared a
state of emergency after furious rioters looted businesses, ransacking
shops and stealing armloads of merchandise, and torched cars.
The violence is the latest in a series of confrontations between US
police and mainly young African
American young men enraged by
what they see as racism in the force.
Last summers fatal shooting of
unarmed teenager Michael Brown
by a white police officer in Ferguson,
Missouri, triggered coast-to-coast

Today of all days the


[Gray] family was
clear this was a day
of sacred closure.
Jamal Bryant
Pastor

protests.
The unrest in Baltimore started
after the funeral of Freddie Gray,
a 25-year-old black man, who died
April 19 of severe spinal injuries apparently suffered during his arrest
this month.
Despite appeals for calm from Mr
Grays family, roving gangs of youths
fought street battles with police that
left 15 officers hurt, six of them seriously. Several news reporters were
assaulted and had equipment stolen.
Police said they were combing
through video footage to identify
other possible offenders. But as fires
continued to light up the night sky
bright orange in the early hours of
yesterday morning, police said the
violence appeared to be abating.
I think for the vast majority the
city is calming itself down slowly
but surely, other than the car fires
and the street fires, police chief Anthony Batts told a news conference
shortly before midnight, urging parents to take control of your kids.
Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake declared a curfew to
start last night, while city schools
said they would remain closed for
the day.
While most of the violence was
in the west of the city, as night fell,
a large building was also ablaze onBaltimores east side.
Maryland police superintendent
Colonel William Pallozzi said he
had ordered 500 police to the city
and requested 5000 more from the
broader Mid-Atlantic region.
And National Guard command-

A man has his eyes cleaned after he was pepper-sprayed by the Baltimore Police during violent protests following the
funeral of Freddie Gray on April 27. Photo: AFP

er Adjutant General Linda Singh


said she had 5000 troopers ready
and would deploy them in massive force to protect people and
property.
Too many people have spent
generations building up this city for
it to be destroyed by thugs, said Ms
Rawlings-Blake, who has faced criticism that the city had been slow to
act.
President Barack Obama was
briefed on the rapidly evolving
situation by Rawlings-Blake and
his newly sworn-in Attorney General Loretta Lynch, the White House
said.
The University of Marylands
downtown campus, corporate offices and the citys popular Lexington
Market shut down early.
The Baltimore Orioles baseball
team cancelled its evening game
against the visiting Boston Red Sox
as a precaution.
Rioting erupted soon after Mr
Gray was buried. It was possibly
spurred by a cryptic social media
message declaring an after-school
purge street slang for random acts

of lawlessness.
Thousands converged on New
Shiloh Baptist Church in Baltimores
poverty-ridden Sandtown neighborhood earlier to pay respects to Mr
Gray. His grieving family had explicitly asked for no protests.
Today of all days, the family
was clear this was a day of sacred
closure, said pastor Jamal Bryant
of the citys Empowerment Temple
church, who delivered the eulogy.
Violence had also erupted on
April 25 when 34 people were arrested, and six police officers injured, after an orderly rally for Mr
Gray outside Baltimore city hall.
Police on April 27 announced
they had received a credible threat
that criminal gangs in Baltimore
had entered into a partnership to
take out law enforcement officers.
At the funeral Mr Grays body
was in a white casket next to a Los
Angeles Dodgers baseball cap and a
sign reading, Peace yall.
Crowds swayed to hymns, chanting justice shall prevail, peace will
prevail in the church, where a
photo of Mr Gray was displayed

among floral wreaths.


Supporters, many dressed in
white, filled the buildings 2200
seats and hundreds of others stood,
with the words Black lives matter
and all lives matter projected on
the wall.
Tensions have been on the rise
in Baltimore since Mr Grays death,
which his familys lawyers say was
caused when his spine was mostly
severed following his arrest.
Six officers have been suspended
with pay pending the outcome of
a police investigation that is to be
submitted to state prosecutors by
May 1.
The US Justice Department,
which was already looking into
Baltimores use of force, has also
opened a federal civil rights probe.
Police confirmed Mr Gray had requested medical help and an inhaler
after he was detained, and have acknowledged he should have received
medical attention sooner.
In video taken by bystanders, Mr
Gray can be heard howling in apparent pain as his limp body is dragged
into the van during his arrest. AFP

MAIDUGURI, NIGERIA

Hundreds found dead as Boko Haram violence resurges


THE bodies of hundreds of people, apparently victims of the Boko
Haram insurgency, have been found
in the northeast Nigerian town of
Damasak, as details emerged of fresh
attacks by the militants.
Reports of decomposing bodies littering the streets of Damasak
emerged on April 27 as president-elect
Muhammadu Buhari denounced the
Islamists as a bogus religious group
and vowed a hard line against them
when he comes to power at the end
of next month.
Northeast Nigeria has been relentlessly targeted throughout the
jihadists six-year uprising, but there
had been a lull in violence in recent
weeks.
A coalition of troops from Chad,
Cameroon, Niger and Nigeria has
claimed major victories since February, reportedly flushing the militants
out of areas they previously controlled.
The discovery of hundreds of bodies, including women and children,
and the latest attacks underlined
both the brutality of the conflict and
the continuing threat posed by the
extremists.
The grim find in Damasak far

outnumbered that of about 100 bodies found in a mass grave under a


bridge after the town was liberated in
early March by Chadian forces, said
local resident Kaumi Kusur.
Dead bodies were found in houses, streets and many more in the
Damasak River which has dried up,
he said, adding the victims were buried in 20 mass graves at the weekend.
Mohammed Sadiq, another local
who helped in the burials on April 25,
put the death toll at more than 400
but the Borno state government did
not state a precise figure, giving a toll
of hundreds.
The victims had been covered by
sand from the encroaching desert,
with the burial ordered by the state
authorities, which are looking at the
return of thousands of people displaced by the violence.
Mr Buhari, who takes office on
May 29, was elected last month on a
pledge of a tougher approach to Boko
Haram than the current administration of President Goodluck Jonathan.
The former military ruler said in
a statement issued by his All Progressives Congress party, No religion
allows for the killing of children in
school dormitories, in markets and

places of worship.
They have nothing to do with religion. They are terrorists and we are
going to deal with them as we deal
with terrorists.
Mr Buhari was speaking after
Boko Haram fighters stormed the
island of Karamga on Lake Chad in
motorised canoes before sunrise on
April 25.
Troops from Niger stationed on
the island were caught off guard
and suffered heavy losses, said Umar
Yerima, a fisherman who witnessed
the raid but escaped by hiding in long

No religion allows
for the killing of
children in school
dormitories, in
markets and places
of worship.
Muhammadu Buhari
Nigerian president elect

grass near the shore.


Nigers military confirmed the attack but did not provide a death toll.
A security source in Chad said Niger
lost 48 soldiers and another 36 were
missing.
Another source, an official from
southeastern Nigers Diffa region,
said the toll was much higher at 80
dead and some 30 missing.
Mr Yerima said the Islamic State
group-allied militants turned their
guns onto civilians after overpowering the troops, firing at people who
had jumped into the water to avoid
detection.
Some residents were also burnt
alive in their homes, he added.
On April 24, suspected Boko Haram fighters disguised as soldiers intercepted a group of people trying to
return to their homes to collect abandoned food supplies in northeastern
Yobe state.
The men, 21 of them, were stopped
at Bultaram [village] by gunmen we believe are Boko Haram who shot them
dead, said Baba Nuhu, an official with
the Gujba local government.
Like many Gujba residents, Mr
Nuhu and Haruna Maram, the brother of one of the victims, have sought

refuge from the violence in Yobes


capital Damaturu.
My brother and 20 others wanted
to bring back their grains to augment
their lean food supplies, Mr Maram
said. Unfortunately, they were killed
by [the] same Boko Haram we ran
away from.
Gujba is one of a handful of districts in Yobe that Boko Haram captured during its sweeping offensive
from mid-2014.
It was also the scene of a gruesome
massacre at an agricultural college in
2013 that targeted students sleeping
their dormitories.
Community leaders have warned
civilians are still at risk, especially
those returning to remote areas like
Gujba where the militarys deployment has typically been thin.
Many experts agree that Boko
Haram is likely to transition from
capturing and holding territory to
reverting to a pattern of hit-and-run
attacks.
Analysts say boastings from regional armies should be treated with
caution, as the Islamists are far from
defeated and can easily regroup, especially if there is a let-up in the military pressure. AFP

World 15

www.mmtimes.com
SEOUL

Sewol ferry captain


found guilty of murder
A SOUTH Korean appeals court
yesterday found the captain of the
Sewol ferry that sank a year ago
guilty of murdering the 304 people
who died in the disaster and upped
his sentence to life imprisonment.
The ruling in the southern city of
Gwangju overturned a lower court
decision which had acquitted Lee
Jun-Seok of homicide charges in November, convicting him instead of
gross negligence and sentencing him
to 36 years.
Most of the victims were high
school students on an organised trip
and their families had been outraged
by the homicide acquittal.
During the appeal hearing, prosecutors had asked the court to reconsider the most serious charge of
murder through wilful negligence.
They also insisted that Mr Lee,
69, deserved execution, arguing that
he had abandoned his passengers in
the clear knowledge that they would
die.
Captain Lees irresponsible activity led to the death of young students
who perished without realising their
dreams ... and he inflicted an incurable injury on their parents, the high
court said in its ruling.
He gave up his duty as captain ...
and must be separated forever from
our society, it said, adding that Mr
Lees actions had seriously damaged

Lee Joon-seok, captain of the sunken


ferry Sewol, sits for the verdict at
Gwangju High Court in South Korea
on April 28. Photo: AFP

South Koreas national image.


The Sewol was carrying 476
people when it went down off the
southwest island of Jindo on April

16 last year. Of the 304 who died,


250 were pupils from the same
high school.
The tragedy shocked and enraged
the country as it became clear that
it was almost entirely man-made,
the result of an illegal redesign,
an overloaded cargo bay, an inexperienced crew and an unhealthy
nexus between operators and state
regulators.
Mr Lee and his crew were publicly vilified, especially after video footage emerged showing them escaping
the vessel while hundreds remained
trapped on board.
Reacting to yesterdays murder conviction, Jeong Hye-Sun, the
mother of one of the students who
died, said she was still unhappy
that Mr Lee had escaped a death
sentence.
Whats the difference between
36 years and a life sentence for an
old man? He should have been sentenced to death, Ms Jeong said.
At the original trial, Mr Lee said
he had committed a crime for which
I deserve to die, but strenuously
denied he had ever intended to sacrifice the lives of the passengers.
Fourteen crew members were
given prison terms ranging from
five to 30 years in November, but the
appeals court cut those down to between 18 months and 12 years.

PHNOM PENH

Mekong meeting to
tackle human trafficking
ANTI Human Trafficking officials
met in Phnom Penh yesterday to
discuss greater cooperation between the six Greater Mekong
Sub-region nations in tackling
such crimes.
The senior representatives
from Cambodia, China, Laos,
Myanmar, Thailand and Vietnam countries gathered to explore ways to intensify cooperation in fighting against human
trafficking.
The 10th COMMIT (Coordinated Mekong Ministerial Initiative
against Trafficking) meeting was
held under the theme, Regional
Commitment to End Human
Trafficking through Unity and
Innovation.
The GMS countries include
Cambodia, China, Laos, Myanmar,
Thailand and Vietnam.
Speaking at the opening ceremony of the two-day meeting, Ing
Kantha Phavi, Cambodian minister of womens affairs, said the
COMMIT has served as a unique
sub-regional mechanism for cooperation in counter-human trafficking among the GMS countries.
Our six countries have definitely intensified and improved
efforts against human trafficking
after the groundbreaking memorandum of understanding signed
in 2004 to foster regional cooperation against this crime, she said.
The meeting today is very
important to continue promoting

peace, stability and human security in the GMS countries.


The minister said effective
prosecution of traffickers is definitely one of the most successful strategies to prevent human
trafficking.
As a community which is affected by this transnational crime
as well as unsafe migration, we
need to continue strengthening
our response through regional
and bilateral agreements between
our countries, she said.
In particular, we need to
implement standard operating
procedures which facilitate prosecution of trafficking criminals as
well as protection of victims.
Ms Wiesen, chief of regional
policy and program support of the
UNDP Bangkok Regional Hub,
said the United Nations has long
been a partner of the governments
of the six GMS countries in fighting against trafficking in persons.
We are here to realise our vision of rooting out trafficking in
all its forms, protecting its victims, and prosecuting its perpetrators, she said. The victims
of this crime must remain at the
forefront of our thoughts and actions.
The 10th COMMIT Senior Officials meeting was held prior to
the 4th COMMIT Inter-Ministerial Meeting, which is due to take
place tomorrow.
Xinhua

the pulse editor: ChArlotte rose charlottelola.rose@gmail.com

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i
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n

THE MYANMAR TIMES April 29, 2015

Myanmars reggae king promotes peace and

Photo: Saw Poe Kwar/Facebook

human rights

NYEIN EI EI HTWE

Myanmar reggae artist Saw Poe Kwar. Photo: Aung Htay Hlaing

IS music spoke to the world. Since


his untimely death, streets have
been named after him in Brooklyn,
New York, and Banatski Socolac,
Serbia. Aboriginal Australians lit
an eternal flame in his honour, and a blue
memorial plaque adorns a building he once
inhabited in London. If there is an alternative
pantheon, bringing together Che Guevara,
James Brown and Muhammad Ali, he is surely
a member.
But who, now, in Yangon, remembers
Jamaicas Bob Marley?
Saw Poe Kwar, thats who.
The long, twisted dreadlocks must be
uncomfortable in this heat, but the heat
seems not to trouble him.
If Myanmar people know me, it may be
because I sing of peace. But what about my
music? he asked in a recent interview.
He first came to reggae, Jamaicas
signature music, through football, another
passion of Marleys. A friend gave him a
tape, and he found in it peace and freedom.
Wanting more, he found only a brick wall at
that time. Marleys death in 1981 had set a
limitation on his work.
I didnt have any relatives living in Western
countries who could send me Bob Marley tapes,
and it was not easy to find reggae here, he said.
As a sailor he travelled the world, often
alongside black shipmates who were very
familiar with reggae. He acquired his own
collection of the music before returning home
and starting a family.
When my son was two years old, I
released my first reggae album. My family
thought I was crazy, said Saw Poe Kwar, now
47, with a smile.
When I played football, I knew not all the
crowd liked me, but all I wanted to do was
score, he said.

nyeineieihtwe23@ gmail.com
Now he has two sons and four albums out, but still
encounters audiences not attuned to his taste.
Reggae is very practical and unadorned. But it takes
time to get into, and people thought I was making a
mistake, said Saw Poe Kwar. He was undeterred.
Under the censorship imposed until 2012 by the
military regime, his musical calls for peace were silenced.
People thought I was breaking the rules because my
lyrics were not neat and tidy, but always messy. What they
didnt get was that reggae is freedom, he said.
Last year, he launched his album A Kine Kyi Kyi Hmar
Thwar Nar (Just take place on big branch), uncensored,
and singing of peace.
A Kayin national, Saw Poe Kwar began to attract larger
audiences as the national ceasefire process gained ground.
For him, there were four kinds of fans: those who liked his
music but didnt understand the words, and those who liked
to sing along. Then there were those who favoured peace and
used his words to express themselves, and those who just
enjoyed music that spoke to them in clear and simple words.
We need to think in terms of humans getting along,
with no more rules. I dont mean I am against religion, but
we dont need to fight about it. All faiths support peace, so
I help interfaith groups by singing whenever I can, said
Saw Poe Kwar.
Last month, Equality Myanmar launched an album
Land Mines to which he contributed one song based on a
true story.
Once in Karen State, I sang about land mines, he said.
Before making that album, I discussed human rights with
that organisation and decided to sing again.
One of his sons, now a grown musician also, seems to
be following in his footsteps. I didnt want to influence
him but I heard he included reggae, R&B and hip hop in
his album, he said with smile.
He is grateful to his wife for her support. I never really
explained all this to her. But I know she understands me
and trusts in my decisions, he said.
Reggae is true: We are peaceful and we feel freedom.
Its difficult for us to explain our feelings to each other, but
love is all I bring. So please all love each other, Saw Poe
Kwar said.

the pulse 17

www.mmtimes.com

Entries open for


Miss World
Myanmar 2015
CHIt Su
suwai.chit@gmail.com

UST off the high heels


and practice your earnest
speech on current world
issues. Yes, its that time
again Miss World
Myanmar 2015 is upon us.
Perhaps the most famous of
Miss pageants in Myanmar, Miss
World Myanmar 2015 kicks off at
the beginning of May. Applications
are now open, but only for a brief
window ending April 30. Oh, and
the emphasis really is on Miss
hopefuls must be aged between 18-23.
Despite its popularity, this years
pageant is only the second ever. Last
years inaugural event saw Wine Lay
crowned Miss World Myanmar 2014.
Between 30-40 contenders will
be selected from applicants at the
beginning of May. After conducting
interviews with this first round of
contestants, judges will narrow
the group down to 20. This top
20 will then begin their training

in preparation for the Miss World


Myanmar 2015 pageant on July 11.
And what of the lucky winners
spoils? Miss World Myanmar 2015
will receive K10,000,000 (US$9260)
and a crown worth twice as much.
The competition is organised by
Channel 7 and Forever BEC-Tero.
We faced some difficulties last year.
So now, we are preparing for the best
to avoid any conflicts, said the event
manager Ko Soe Thura.
Controversy struck last years
contest when competition darling
and crowd favourite Patricia was
struck from the top 20. Organisers
stated disciplinary reasons, saying
Patricia took leave from pageant
training without approval. Patricias
Facebook page told a different story,
announcing she had asked for and
received approval for the leave before
being kicked out of the competition.
Patricias case happened because
of a misunderstanding, said Soe
Thura. There will be no cases like
that this year.
In 2014, Miss World Myanmar

Contestants strut their stuff at the 2014 Miss World Myanmar. Photos: Zarni Phyo

winner Wine Lay went on to compete


in Miss World 2014. Unfortunately she
didnt win a place, which organisers
attribute to a lack of preparation
time.
The Miss World Myanmar 2014
pageants competition date was very
close to Miss World 2014, said Soe
Thura.
Wine Lay had only two weeks to
get training. This year, we are trying
to organise one-and-a-half months
training for the pageant who wins the
Miss World Myanmar 2015.
For the 20 shortlisted contestants,

training will take place not only in


Myanmar but also Phuket, Thailand
where personality training and makeup training will be held for five days.
In 2014, I was the first person
who represented Myanmar to take
part in Miss World, said last years
queen, Wine Lay.
So, I couldnt ask for help from
someone with experience. I was very
excited and I had only two weeks
training for beauty and make-up.
When I was in London for Miss
World, I had some difficulties doing
make-up myself, she added.

Wine Lay advised this years


contestants to pay close attention
during their training.
We want to show Myanmars
beautiful woman to the world, said
Soe Thura.
I want to invite Myanmar women
who believe they are qualified
mentally and physically.
Hopeful applicants for Miss
World Myanmar 2015 can apply
from 9am-5pm in Myanmar Event
Park, Shin Saw Pu Street, Sanchaung
township but make sure its before
Thursday, April 30.

Miss World Myanmar 2014 contestants pose with the crowned Miss World Myanmar Wine Lay (centre).

BEIJING

eyes on the prize: China cracks down on art, literary awards


FIRST went the fancy banquets, then
the lavish gift-giving. Now, Chinas
ruling Communist Party has set its
sights on a new target in its anticorruption drive: art and literary
prizes.
Chinas proliferation of cultural
awards has raised alarm among the
partys much-feared anti-corruption
investigators, who worry that
government officials are using them
as a means of improving their clout,
according to the official Xinhua news
agency.
At a meeting April 27 in Changsha
the capital of Hunan, Communist

Chinas founding father Mao


Zedongs home province culture
ministry officials vowed to strictly
prohibit the obtaining of illegitimate
benefits in the name of art, Xinhua
reported.
The ministry of culture will carry
out a comprehensive rectification of
literary and art awards, Xinhua said.
A number of awards will be cancelled
or streamlined, with an overall
reduction of more than 60 percent.
Literature and art awards
programmes during festivals will
be cancelled, and criticism will be
strengthened, it added, saying the

ministry will guard against and


eliminate all kinds of unhealthy
tendencies.
Chinas art and cultural spheres
have come under increasing scrutiny
from Communist Party investigators
under President Xi Jinping seeking
to crack down on corruption at all
levels.
In January, the partys internal
Central Commission for Discipline
Inspection (CCDI) urged officials not
to seek senior positions in provincial
art and calligraphy associations,
warning that cadres who do so are
stealing the meat off artists plates.

In some places, you will see


dozens of vice presidents sitting
atop the provincial calligraphy
association, the CCDI wrote in a
notice at the time.
What kind of behind-the-scenes
profit is motivating officials to use
their authority to grab literary
laurels?
Officials in China have at times
sought to use calligraphy as a way of
hiding bribes, according to the staterun China Daily newspaper.
Last year, Jiang Guoxing, deputy
head of the press and publication
bureau in Jiangsu province, was

sentenced to 12.5 years in prison


for accepting 1.85 million yuan
(US$300,000) in bribes, some of
which were disguised as payment for
his calligraphy masterpieces, the
paper reported.
One work of four scribbled
characters which Jiang sold to a
businessman for 50,000 yuan ($8062)
was later deemed worthless by
authorities, the China Daily reported.
More recently, the culture ministry
sought to crack down on other
unseemly behaviour, such as hiring
strippers to perform at rural funerals.
AFP

18 the pulse

THE MYANMAR TIMES April 29, 2015

Tokyo museum honours


folding world of origami
HIRomI Tanaka
During a trip to South america,
i was surprised to meet an origami
hobbyist in Bolivia who had learned
the paper-folding craft in school.
To learn more about the
worldwide appeal of origami, i visited
the Origami Kaikan that opened in
Tokyo, by yushima no Kobayashi
inc, a long-standing manufacturer
and seller of origami paper founded
in 1858. The building houses an
exhibition space for origami works
and a paper-dyeing workshop.
it uses the fingers, so its good

for rehabilitation, said yushima no


Kobayashi president and museum
curator Kazuo Kobayashi, 73, folding
origami paper as he spoke. it has
a hand-dyed touch that you cant
produce by machine.
Kobayashi performs demonstrations
when he has time to spare so more
people can understand the fun of
origami. red paper with gold stripes
is folded into a rose; light yellowgreen, pink, and white paper become
a folding fan with a crane folded into
it. its like magic, exclaim visitors
as they watch the squares of paper
changing shape.

Kazuo Kobayashi, right, curator of Origami Kaikan, a museum and workshop in


Tokyo, folds paper into cranes and hina dolls to demonstrate the art of origami.

People tend to think you cannot


make beautiful works unless you line
up the edges exactly, but Kobayashi
said, with a laugh, Precise alignment
is not necessary. This is because
slight deviations reveal the colour
of the reverse side of the paper and
bring out a certain flavour. He used
his scissors boldly when cutting the
paper as well.
in the fourth-floor workshop, you
can watch up close as craftsmen dye
Japanese washi paper with skilful
strokes of their brushes.
Before i got used to it, i had a
hard time with my brush drying
out and getting stuck midway, said
craftsman Toshimitsu Hagiwara, 40.
The roughly 5000 types of origami
paper they sell, including hand-dyed
offerings, are all vividly coloured
and endless fun to look at. There are
repeat visitors who come frequently,
hoping to see new works. There are
about 200 visitors a day, many of
them from overseas.
Origami is often considered a
pastime for children, but there are
also stylish ways to enjoy it as an
adult, such as making a bottle cap
in the shape of a kabuto traditional
helmet, or folding a banknote into the
shape of a dog to give as a tip. Before
i knew it, i was totally absorbed in
picking out origami paper, just like
when i was a child.
Works by origami artists are
exhibited in the gallery on the
mezzanine level, and origami
paper and other Japanese washi

Washi paper is dyed at Origami Kaikan, a museum and workshop in Tokyo. The
paper will be dried, cut and then folded into artwork. Photos: The Yomiuri Shimbun/
Taku Yaginuma

papers are sold on the third floor.


The hand-dyeing workshop on the
fourth floor may be closed to visitors
depending on the work under way.
On the fifth and sixth floors, there
are classrooms for making origami

and Japanese paper dolls (admission


fee, appointment required). The
origami paper on sale includes about
200 varieties of sets for making hina
dolls, kabuto traditional helmets and
others. The Yomiuri Shimbun

BEIRUT

Relocated Syrian bands rock Beiruts alternative music scene


Syrian rock bands fleeing war
are finding safety and new fans in
neighbouring Lebanon, where they are
revitalising a Westernised scene with
their focus on arabic musical heritage.
Dozens of Syrian bands and
independent artists have now become
mainstays of the Beirut music scene,
performing emotive and often bleak
songs in front of concert-goers eager
for fresh faces.
in a bright Beirut apartment, two
members of Dawle, an alternative
rock band from Damascus, practise
surrounded by freshly hung laundry,
balls of yarn and cups of tea.
youre still alive, under the siege?
sings anas Maghrebi, the bands lead
singer, in their song ayesh, which
means alive in arabic.
you loved and you grew up. you
spent your life savings on a house
and now that house is gone. and
youre still alive.
Syrias four-year-old conflict has
left more than 220,000 people dead
and has forced millions, including
artists and musicians, to flee to
neighbouring countries.
Many civilians in Syria live in
areas besieged by the regime or
armed groups, cutting off their access
to food and medical aid.
While some Syrian artists sing
about everyday challenges and
societal pressures, many use their
music to talk about their experiences
of war.
Khebez Dawle the arabic
term for Syrias ubiquitous statesubsidised bread say their self-titled
first album, released in December,
attempts to give a young mans
narrative of what happened in Syria.
We just tell the story as if were
telling it to a friend, Maghrebi said.
Khebez Dawle have much to
recount about Syrias war, which they
fled in 2013, a year after a fellow band

member was killed.


They say arriving to the safety
of Beirut breathed new life into the
band after their friends death.
The main thing that allowed us
to start up again was that we were in
Beirut. Half the problem was gone,
says Maghrebi.
in contrast to Syria, where they
faced violence and few venues,
studios or opportunities for growth,
rock bands see Beirut as an incubator
for their talents.
When we came to Beirut, and we
saw that theres no pressure here, we
said we want to take advantage of
everything. Everything we couldnt
have in Syria, we want to have here,
says Bashar Darwish, Khebez Dawles
guitarist.
in Lebanon, Syrian musicians have
made connections with producers,
filmmakers, venue owners and
financiers.
Members of Syrias Tanjaret
Daghet, arabic for pressure cooker,
left Syria for Lebanon in 2011.
While practising in their cluttered
single-room underground studio one
day, the band got a surprise visit from
their Lebanese neighbour.
But instead of asking them to turn
their music down, raed al-Khazen
complimented Tanjaret Daghet on
their hard rock sounds and eventually
became their producer.
The opportunity that these guys
got here, they would have never
gotten in Syria, says Khazen.
The Lebanese scene gave them
the freedom to express themselves,
because were more open, because we
listen, because we have venues where
they can play.
The Syrian bands are now
a regular sight at Lebanese
underground venues, where they
say high-energy audiences have
encouraged them.

The audience here helped us out a


lot because theyre willing to pay for a
ticket to come see someone who writes
their own music, says Tarek Khuluki,
guitarist for Tanjaret Daghet.
We met so many people here who
opened up our minds and made us
say, why not? says Khaled Omran,
the bands lead singer and songwriter.
Hisham Jaber, artistic director at
the Metro al Madina venue that has
hosted several Syrian acts, says the
new arrivals have revived Lebanons
stagnant underground scene.

now, theres movement, theres


life. There are even mixed SyrianLebanese bands, he says.
For Khazen, this positive influence
comes from Syrian musicians strong
link with traditional Middle Eastern
music and their command of the
arabic language.
While Lebanese bands often sing
in English, the Syrian bands tend
to perform in arabic, and use more
traditional Middle Eastern scales and
harmonies.
This is what gives their music the

depth that you dont find much here,


Khazen says.
The way they approach music, art
and musical instruments should be
an example for Lebanese guys.
Maghrebi says the two-way
relationship has brought Syria and
Lebanon closer.
now if you go look at the young
music scene, there isnt one scene in
Lebanon and one scene in Syria, he
says.
Theres a new scene for both.
AFP

Lead singer and bass guitarist Khaled Omran (right), electric guitarist Tarek Khuluki (middle) and drummer Dani Shukri of
Syrian band, Tanjaret Daghet, from Damascus pose with their album. Photo: AFP/Anwar Amro

20 the pulse

THE MYANMAR TIMES April 29, 2015

DOMESTIC FLIGHT SCHEDULES


Yangon to MandalaY
Flight
Y5 775
W9 515
YH 909
YH 917
YJ 891
YJ 891
K7 282
W9 201
YH 826
YH 835
YH 909
YH 831
YH 911
W9201
YH 829
7Y 131
K7 266
8M 6603
YJ 751
YJ 601
YJ 201
YJ 761
YJ 233
YJ 211
YH 729
YH 737
YH 727
W9 251
K7 822
YJ 151/W9 7151
K7 622
K7 226
YH 731
Y5 234
W9 211

Days
Daily
1
1,2,3,5,6
Daily
1,2,4,5,6
3
Daily
Daily
3
1,7
7
4,6
2
1
5
Daily
Daily
4
5
6
1,2,4
1,2,4
6
5,7
2,4,6
3,5,7
1
2,5
4,7
1
1,3,5,7
2,4,6
Daily
Daily
4

Dep
6:00
6:00
6:00
6:10
6:00
6:30
6:00
7:00
7:00
7:00
7:00
7:00
7:00
7:00
7:00
7:15
8:00
9:00
10:45
11:00
11:00
11:00
11:00
11:00
11:00
11:15
11:15
11:30
12:30
13:00
13:00
13:30
14:30
15:20
15:30

Arr
7:10
7:25
7:40
8:30
8:05
8:35
8:10
8:25
8:40
8:40
8:40
8:40
8:40
8:25
11:05
9:20
10:05
10:10
14:50
12:25
12:25
12:55
12:55
12:25
14:00
13:25
13:25
12:55
16:55
16:45
14:25
14:55
16:40
16:30
16:55

MandalaY to Yangon
Flight
Y5 233
YJ 891
K7 283
YH 918
YH 910
W9 201
YJ 891
7Y 132
K7 267
YH 830
YH 912
YJ 762
YH 832
YH 827
YH 836
YH 910
YJ 212
YJ 212
YJ 202
YJ 602
YJ 762
YH 732
YH 732
YH 728
W9 152/W97152
Y5 776
W9 211
K7 823
8M 6604
K7 227
8M 903
YH 738
K7 623
YH 730
YJ 234
W9 252

Days
Daily
1,2,4,5,6
Daily
Daily
7
Daily
3
Daily
Daily
5
2
4
4,6
3
1,7
1,2,3,5,6
5,7
5,7
1,2,4
7
1,2
6
Daily
1
1
Daily
4
2,4,7
4
2,4,6
1,2,4,5,7
3,5,7
1,3,5,7
2,4,6
6
2,5

Dep
7:50
8:20
8:25
8:30
8:40
8:40
8:50
9:35
10:20
11:05
11:30
13:10
13:20
13:20
13:20
13:20
15:00
15:00
15:30
15:40
16:35
16:40
16:40
16:45
17:05
17:10
17:10
17:10
17:20
17:20
17:20
17:25
17:40
17:45
17:45
18:15

Arr
9:00
10:15
11:30
10:45
10:05
10:35
10:45
11:30
12:25
14:55
13:25
17:00
14:45
14:45
14:45
14:45
16:25
16:25
16:55
17:35
18:00
18:05
18:45
18:10
18:30
18:20
19:15
18:35
18:30
18:45
18:30
18:50
19:05
19:10
19:10
19:40

Yangon to naY pYi taw

naY pYi taw to Yangon

Flight
FMI A1
FMI B1
FMI C1

Flight
FMI A2
FMI B2
FMI C2

Days
1,2,3,4,5
1,2,3,4,5
1,2,3,4,5

Dep
7:15
10:45
17:00

Arr
8:15
11:45
18:00

Yangon to nYaung u
Flight
K7 282
YJ 891
YH 909
YH 917
YJ 891
YH 909
K7 242
7Y 131
K7 264
YH 731
W9 129
W9 211
W9 129

Days
Daily
1,2,4,5,6
1,2,3,5,6
Daily
3,7
4
Daily
Daily
Daily
Daily
1,3,6
4
1

Dep
6:00
6:00
6:00
6:10
6:30
6:30
7:00
7:15
14:30
14:30
15:30
15:30
15:30

Days
1,2,3,4,5
1,2,3,4,5
1,2,3,4,5

Dep
8:35
13:30
18:20

Arr
9:35
14:30
19:20

nYaung u to Yangon
Arr
7:20
7:20
8:25
7:45
7:50
8:05
8:20
8:35
16:40
17:25
17:35
17:40
17:35

Flight
YJ 891
YH 918
YJ 891
YH 910
YH 910
K7 242
7Y 131
K7 283
K7 265
YH 732
W9 129

Days
1,2,4,5,6
Daily
3,7
4
1,2,3,5,6
Daily
Daily
Daily
Daily
Daily
1,3,6

Dep
7:35
7:45
8:05
8:05
8:25
8:35
8:50
10:10
16:55
17:25
17:50

Arr
10:15
10:45
10:45
9:25
9:45
11:45
11:30
11:30
18:15
18:45
19:10

Yangon to MYitkYina

MYitkYina to Yangon

Flight
YH 829
YH 826
YH 835
YH 831
YJ 201
YJ 201
W9 251

Flight
YH 827
YH 832
YH 836
YH 830
YJ 202
YJ 202
YJ 234
W9 252

Days
5
3
1,7
4,6
1,2,4
3
2,5

Dep
7:00
7:00
7:00
7:00
11:00
11:15
11:30

Arr
9:40
10:05
10:05
10:05
13:50
14:05
14:25

Days
3
4,6
1,7
5
1,2,4
3
6
2,5

Dep
11:55
11:55
11:55
12:30
14:05
14:20
16:20
16:45

Arr
14:45
14:45
14:45
14:55
16:55
17:10
19:10
19:40

Yangon to HeHo
Flight
YJ 891
K7 282
YH 917
YJ 881
YJ 891
K7 242
7Y 131
K7 266
Y5 649
YH 505
YJ 751
YJ 751
YJ 761
YJ 233
YH 727
YH 737
YH 727
K7 828
K7 822
K7 264
YH 731
W9 129

Days
1,2,4,5,6
Daily
Daily
7
3
Daily
Daily
Daily
Daily
1,2,3,4,5,6
3,7
5
1,2,4
6
1
3,5,7
3
1,3,5
2,4,7
Daily
Daily
1,3,6

Dep
6:00
6:00
6:10
6:30
6:30
7:00
7:15
8:00
10:30
10:30
10:30
10:45
11:00
11:00
11:15
11:15
11:15
12:30
12:30
14:30
14:30
15:30

HeHo to Yangon
Arr
8:50
9:00
9:35
8:45
9:20
9:15
10:05
9:15
12:45
11:55
11:40
11:55
12:10
12:10
12:40
12:40
12:40
13:45
13:45
15:45
15:55
16:40

Yangon to MYeik
Flight
Y5 325
K7 319
7Y 531
Y5 325

Days
1,5
1,3,5,7
2,4,6
2

Dep
6:45
7:00
11:45
15:30

Days
1,3,6
Daily
1,3,5,7

Dep
11:30
11:45
12:00

Days
Daily
1,2,3,4,5,6
1,3,6
1,3,5,7
Daily
1,3,4,6

Dep
7:00
10:30
11:30
12:00
13:00
15:45

Flight
Y5 326
7Y 532
K7 320
Y5 326

Arr
12:55
12:55
13:50

Flight
W9 309
6T 612
K7 423

Days
1
2,4,6

Dep
7:00
11:45

Days
3,7
5
2,4,6
1,3,5

Dep
10:30
10:45
11:00
12:30

Arr
10:35
13:10
13:50
12:50
13:35
16:40

Flight
K7 243
YH 506
7Y 413
W9 309
K7 422
Y5 422

Arr
8:10
12:50

Flight
K7 320
7Y 532

Days
3
4,6
1,7
2,5

Dep
7:00
7:00
7:00
11:30

Dep
8:35
16:05
11:30
17:15

Arr
10:05
18:10
13:35
18:45

Days
1,3,6
Daily
Daily

Dep
13:10
13:15
15:10

Arr
14:55
14:20
16:30

Days
Daily
1,2,3,4,5,6
1,3,5,7
1,3,6
Daily
1,3,4,6

Dep
10:50
13:10
13:05
14:05
14:10
16:55

Arr
11:45
14:00
15:25
14:55
16:30
17:50

Days
1,3,5,7
2,4,6

Dep
12:25
17:05

Flight
YJ 752
K7 829
K7 829
YJ 752
YH 730

Days
5
1,3
5
3,7
2,4,6

Dep
13:15
15:05
15:05
15:40
16:45

Arr
16:30
15:55
17:25
17:55
19:10

putao to Yangon
Arr
11:00
11:00
11:00
15:25

Air Bagan (W9)


Tel: 513322, 513422, 504888. Fax: 515102

Air KBZ (K7)


Tel: 372977~80, 533030~39 (airport), 373766
(hotline). Fax: 372983

Asian Wings (YJ)


Tel: 515261~264, 512140, 512473, 512640
Fax: 532333, 516654

Golden Myanmar Airlines (Y5)


Tel: 09400446999, 09400447999
Fax: 8604051

Mann Yadanarpon Airlines (7Y)


Tel: 656969
Fax: 656998, 651020

Flight
YH 836
YH 832
YH 827
W9 252

Days
1,7
4,6
3
2,5

Dep
11:00
11:00
11:00
15:45

Tel: 383100, 383107, 700264


Fax: 652 533

FMI Air Charter


Tel: 240363, 240373, 09421146545

Airline Codes
7Y = Mann Yadanarpon Airlines

W9 = Air Bagan
Y5 = Golden Myanmar Airlines
YH = Yangon Airways
YJ = Asian Wings
FMI = FMI Air Charter

Arr
13:35
18:10

lasHio to Yangon
Arr
12:45
13:00
13:00
14:50

Domestic Airlines

K7 = Air KBZ

dawei to Yangon

Yangon to putao
Flight
YH 826
YH 831
YH 835
W9 251

Days
1,5
2,4,6
1,3,5,7
2

tHandwe to Yangon

Yangon to lasHio
Flight
YJ 751
YJ 751
YH 729
K7 828

Arr
10:10
10:15
11:30
10:35
11:45
10:45
10:45
11:30
12:25
14:00
16:30
17:00
18:00
18:45
17:25
18:10
18:15
18:50
17:55
19:10

sittwe to Yangon

Yangon to dawei
Flight
K7 319
7Y 531

Dep
9:00
9:05
9:15
9:25
9:30
9:35
9:35
10:20
11:10
11:55
14:20
15:50
15:50
15:55
16:10
16:00
16:30
16:40
16:45
16:55

Yangon Airways (YH)

Arr
8:15
9:05
13:50
17:00

Yangon to tHandwe
Flight
K7 242
YH 505
W9 309
7Y 413
K7 422
Y5 421

Days
7
1,2,4,5,6
Daily
Daily
Daily
Daily
3
Daily
Daily
1,2,3,4,5,6
5
4
1,2
Daily
1,3,5
1
Daily
3,5,7
3,7
1,3,6

MYeik to Yangon

Yangon to sittwe
Flight
W9 309
6T 611
K7 413

Flight
YJ 881
YJ 891
K7 283
W9 201
K7 243
YH 918
YJ 891
7Y 132
K7 267
YH 506
YJ 752
YJ 762
YJ 762
YH 732
K7 829
YH 728
K7 264
YH 738
YJ 752
W9 129

Arr
14:45
14:45
14:45
19:40

Subject to change
without notice
Day
1 = Monday
2 = Tuesday
3 = Wednesday
4 = Thursday
5 = Friday
6 = Saturday
7 = Sunday

the pulse 21

www.mmtimes.com
LONDON

InternAtIonAl FlIGHt SCHeDUleS


YANGON TO BANGKOK

Flights

Days

Dep

Arr

PG 706
Daily
6:05
8M 335
Daily
7:40
TG 304
Daily
9:50
PG 702
Daily
10:30
TG 302
Daily
14:50
PG 708
Daily
15:20
8M 331
Daily
16:30
PG 704
Daily
18:35
Y5 237
Daily
19:00
TG 306
Daily
19:50
YANGON TO DON MUEANG
Flights
DD 4231
FD 252
FD 256
FD 254
FD 258
DD 4239
Flights

Days
Daily
Daily
Daily
Daily
Daily
Daily

8:20
9:25
11:45
12:25
16:45
17:15
18:15
20:30
20:50
21:45

Dep
8:00
8:30
12:50
17:35
21:30
21:00

Arr
9:45
10:20
14:40
19:25
23:15
22:55

YANGON TO SINGAPORE
Days

Dep

Arr

BANGKOK TO YANGON

Flights

Days

Dep

Arr

TG 303
Daily
8:00
PG 701
Daily
8:45
Y5 238
Daily
21:30
8M 336
Daily
10:40
TG 301
Daily
13:05
PG 707
Daily
13:40
PG 703
Daily
17:00
TG 305
Daily
18:05
8M 332
Daily
19:15
PG 705
Daily
20:15
DON MUEANG TO YANGON
Flights
DD 4230
FD 251
FD 255
FD 253
FD 257
DD 4238
Flights

Days
Daily
Daily
Daily
Daily
Daily
Daily

8:45
9:40
22:20
11:25
13:50
14:30
17:50
18:50
20:00
21:30

Dep
6:30
7:15
11:35
16:20
20:15
19:25

Arr
7:15
8:00
12:20
17:05
20:55
20:15

Dep

Arr

8M 231
Daily
8:00
12:25
Y5 2233
Daily
9:45
14:15
TR 2823
Daily
9:45
2:35
SQ 997
Daily
10:25
15:10
3K 582
Daily
11:45
16:20
MI 533
2,4,6
13:35
20:50
8M 233
5,6,7
14:40
19:05
MI 519
Daily
16:40
21:15
3K 584
2,3,5
19:30 00:05+1
YANGON TO KUALA LUMPUR

TR 2822
Daily
7:20
Y5 2234
Daily
7:20
SQ 998
Daily
7:55
3K 581
Daily
9:10
MI 533
2,4,6
11:30
8M 232
Daily
13:25
MI 518
Daily
14:20
3K 583
2,3,5
17:20
8M 234
5,6,7
20:15
KUALA LUMPUR TO YANGON

8:45
8:50
9:20
10:40
12:45
14:50
15:45
18:50
21:40

8M 501
AK 505
MH 741
8M 9506
8M 9508
MH 743
AK 503

11:50
12:45
16:30
16:30
20:05
20:15
23:20

AK 504
8M 9505
MH 740
8M 502
8M 9507
MH 742
AK 502

8:00
11:15
11:15
13:50
14:50
15:05
18:25

Arr
0550+1

Flights
CA 905

Flights

Flights
CA 906

Days

Dep

Arr

1,2,3,5,6
7:50
Daily
8:30
Daily
12:15
Daily
12:15
Daily
15:45
Daily
16:00
Daily
19:05
YANGON TO BEIJING
Days
3,5,7

Dep
23:50

YANGON TO GUANGZHOU
Flights

Days

8M 711
CZ 3056
CZ 3056
Flights

Days

Daily

Dep

Arr

CA 416
MU 2012
MU 2032
Flights

Days

13:15
15:55
22:10

Dep

Arr

10:50

VN 956

1,3,5,6,7

Flights

Days

2,4,7

Days

CZ 3055
CZ 3055
8M 712
CI 7915

Arr

Flights

Days

Daily

Dep

19:10

15:55
18:50
18:15

MU 2011
CA 415
MU 2031

Arr

Flights

21:25

Dep

Days
1,4,6

17:05

Flights

Days

Flights

4,7
Daily

Dep
7:55
Dep

0:50
23:55

Arr
11:40
Arr

8:50
07:45+1

YANGON TO HONG KONG


Days

KA 251
KA 251

1,2,3,4,6,7
5

Flights

Days

Daily

Arr

05:45
05:55

Dep

22:10

Arr

06:45+1

YANGON TO DHAKA

Flights

Days

BG 061
BG 061
Flights

Dep

01:10
01:30

YANGON TO TOKYO

NH 914

2
5

Dep

Arr

11:45
19:45

YANGON TO INCHEON

PG 724
W9 607
8M 7702
8M 7502

Days

1,3,5,6
4,7
Daily
4,7

Dep

12:50
14:30
23:30
00:35

VN 957

Days
2,4,6
1,5
4,7

Flights

Days

VN 943

2,4,7

Flights

Days

3,5,6
2
1,5

Flights

Days

Flights

AI 234
AI 228

1
5

Dep

7:00
13:10
14:05
Dep

13:10
Dep

14:05
18:45

MANDALAY TO BANGKOK

Flights

PG 710

Days

Daily

Dep

14:15

MANDALAY TO SINGAPORE

Flights

MI 533
Y5 2233

Days

2,4,6
1,2,4,5,6

Dep

15:45
7:50

MANDALAY TO DON MUEANG

Flights

FD 245

Days

Daily

Dep

12:50

MANDALAY TO KUNMING

Flights

MU 2030

Days

Daily

Dep

13:50

NAY PYI TAW TO BANGKOK

Flights

PG 722

Days

1,2,3,4,5

Dep

19:45

10:35
16:40
15:50

Dep

Arr

7:00

9:50

Dep

Arr

11:50
11:30
14:00
Arr

16:40
Dep

11:45

Flights

Days

KE 471
0Z 769

Daily
3,6

Flights

Days

KA 252
KA 250

4
1,2,3,5,6,7

Flights

Days

Daily

Flights

Arr

Days

2
5

INCHEON TO YANGON

Arr

Arr

Days

2
3,5,6
5
Days

Dep
9:25
13:45
17:20
Dep

9:10
9:20
15:00
Dep

7:00

KOLKATA TO YANGON

AI 227
AI 233

Days

1
5

Dep

10:35
13:30

BANGKOK TO MANDALAY

Flights

PG 709

Days

Daily

Dep

12:05

SINGAPORE TO MANDALAY

Flights

Y5 2234
MI 533

Days

Daily
2,4,6

Dep

7:20
11:30

DON MUEANG TO MANDALAY

Flights

15:15

FD 244

Arr

Flights

Days

Daily

Dep

10:55

KUNMING TO MANDALAY

16:40

MU 2029

Arr

Flights

22:45

11:00
17:20
18:45
19:50

DELHI TO YANGON

Flights

Flights

20:50
14:15

1,3,5,6
4,7
Daily
3,6

Dep

GAYA TO YANGON

Flights

Arr

Arr

Days

Days
2,4,6
1,5
4,7

AI 235
8M 602
AI 233
AI 235

16:40

Dep

8:30
16:30

CHIANG MAI TO YANGON

16:30
17:20
19:45

Dep

11:45

DHAKA TO YANGON

Flights

Arr

Dep

22:50
21:45

TOKYO TO YANGON

NH 913
BG 060
BG 060

Arr

Dep

18:30
19:30

HONG KONG TO YANGON

13:00
21:00

8:20
14:10
15:05

Dep
19:45

Days

Daily

Dep

12:55

BANGKOK TO NAY PYI TAW

PG 721

Days

1,2,3,4,5

Dep

17:15

Tel: 255412, 413

Air Asia (FD)

Tel: 09254049991~3

Air Bagan Ltd.(W9)

Tel: 513322, 513422, 504888. Fax: 515102

Air China (CA)

Tel: 666112, 655882


Tel: 253597~98, 254758, 253601. Fax 248175

Bangkok Airways (PG)

Tel: 255122, 255265. Fax: 255119

Biman Bangladesh Airlines (BG)


Tel: 371867~68. Fax: 371869

Condor (DE)

Tel: 370836~39 (ext: 303)

Dragonair (KA)

Tel: 255323 (ext: 107), 09-401539206

Golden Myanmar Airlines (Y5)


Tel: 09400446999, 09400447999
Fax: 8604051

Malaysia Airlines (MH)

Tel: 387648, 241007 (ext: 120, 121, 122)


Fax: 241124

Myanmar Airways International (8M)


Tel: 255260. Fax: 255305

Nok Airline (DD)

Tel: 255050, 255021. Fax: 255051

Qatar Airways (QR)

Tel: 379845, 379843, 379831. Fax: 379730

Singapore Airlines (SQ) / Silk Air (MI)


Tel: 255287~9. Fax: 255290

Dep

SEOUL TO YANGON

Flights
Y5 252
7Y 306
W9 608

YANGON TO KOLKATA
Days

Days
3,5,7

Arr
8:05
12:50
16:20

Dep
6:15
11:00
14:30

YANGON TO DELHI

AI 236

Flights
QR 918

PG 723
W9 608
8M 7701
8M 7501

YANGON TO GAYA

8M 601
AI 236
AI 234

Arr

3
8:25
Daily
11:10
1,2,4,5,6,7 13:30
HANOI TO YANGON
1,3,5,6,7

14:45
16:20
07:50+1
09:10

YANGON TO CHIANG MAI

Flights
Y5 251
7Y 305
W9 607

Dep

18:10

Thai Airways (TG)

Arr

Tiger Airline (TR)

13:25

DOHA TO YANGON

YANGON TO SEOUL

0Z 770
KE 472

Arr
22:50

HO CHI MINH CITY TO YANGON


Arr

14:25

Days

Days

YANGON TO DOHA
Flights
QR 919

Dep
19:30

3,6
8:35
1,5
14:40
2,4,7
14:15
TAIPEI TO YANGON

Flights

16:10

YANGON TO HO CHI MINH CITY


VN 942

Arr

KUNMING TO YANGON

Dep

Daily
12:30
3
12:40
1,2,4,5,6,7 14:50
YANGON TO HANOI
Days

Dep

Daily
6:55
Daily
10:05
Daily
10:05
1,2,3,5,6
12:50
Daily
13:40
Daily
13:55
Daily
17:20
BEIJING TO YANGON
Days
3,5,7

Flights

YANGON TO KUNMING
Flights

Days

GUANGZHOU TO YANGON

2,4,7
8:40
3,6
11:35
1,5
17:40
YANGON TO TAIPEI

CI 7916

Flights

All Nippon Airways (NH)

Air India

SINGAPORE TO YANGON
Days

International Airlines

Arr
0459+1
Arr

22:30
23:40
Arr

00:30
23:30
Arr

17:15
Arr

10:45
18:45

Tel: 255491~6. Fax: 255223


Tel: 371383, 370836~39 (ext: 303)

Vietnam Airlines (VN)

Tel: 255066, 255088, 255068. Fax: 255086

Airline Codes
3K = Jet Star
8M = Myanmar Airways International
AK = Air Asia
BG = Biman Bangladesh Airlines
CA = Air China
CI = China Airlines
CZ = China Southern

Arr

11:55
18:10
22:25
23:25

DD = Nok Airline
FD = Air Asia
KA = Dragonair

Arr
10:15
14:35
18:10
Arr

12:10
12:30
18:00
Arr

12:10
Arr

13:20
18:00
Arr

13:25
Arr

16:30
14:50
Arr

12:20
Arr

12:50
Arr

19:15

KE = Korea Airlines
MH = Malaysia Airlines
MI = Silk Air
MU = China Eastern Airlines
NH = All Nippon Airways
PG = Bangkok Airways
QR = Qatar Airways
SQ = Singapore Airways
TG = Thai Airways
TR = Tiger Airline
VN = Vietnam Airline
AI = Air India
Y5 = Golden Myanmar Airlines

Subject to change
without notice
Day
1 = Monday
2 = Tuesday
3 = Wednesday

4
5
6
7

=
=
=
=

Thursday
Friday
Saturday
Sunday

The dining room has a high-panelled ceiling, with a large fireplace at one side.
Photo: House of Lords

Peerless eating:
What its like to eat in
the House of Lords
RichaRD ViNes

oing for lunch at the


House of Lords is like
taking a stroll through
history in terms of food
as well as architecture.
The Peers Dining Room is briefly
open to the public for the first time as
an experiment to see if the common
people are a useful source of income
while Parliament isnt in session.
You might think its a privilege to
dine there, but the lords themselves
may disagree; they have been known
to complain about the food, the
service and even the coffee in the
restaurants, bars and cafeterias that
serve as their staff canteens.
Members of the House of Lords
are known as Peers, and the Peers
Dining Room is the most formal place
to eat, drink and plot. The menu and
the room itself are both charmingly
old-fashioned.
Those of us used to less elevated
dining locations may feel like
impostors trying to pass as aristocrats
at the offices of government, or else
like extras in a Harry Potter movie.
The Palace of Westminster features
stunning gothic interiors and
elaborate chandeliers. its definitely a
bit Hogwarts. Take the Central Lobby,
which you walk through on your way
to lunch: its a stone octagon where
corridors from the House of Lords
and the House of Commons meet.
its soaring arches are decorated with
statues of kings and queens.
You sense thousands of years of
history, though a fire in 1834 means
the current building dates only to the
19th century. The exact history of the
Peers Dining Room isnt known, but
plans of the palace from 1938 show
it occupied the current space at that
time.
its an experience not to be missed,
but you probably will if you havent
booked before the experiment ends
May 8.
You are escorted to a beautiful
panelled room with a high ceiling
and rich furnishings that serves as a
bar, though that little word doesnt
quite describe the splendour of the
location. The wood panelling is dark
and smells of polish and privilege.
You sit on overstuffed chairs and the
view from the windows is of the River
Thames. its like a musty library in
an old country house where a butler
might serve you a glass of vintage
port. Ever seen Downton Abbey?
Youve got it.
You place your order for lunch,
which costs US$53 for three courses,

with coffee and chocolates. There


are four starters, four mains, and
four desserts. The waiters are formal
without being snooty, friendly without
wanting to be your mates.
About 15 minutes later, they escort
you along a corridor to the L-shaped
dining room, which certainly has
the wow factor. A large fireplace sits
at one end; the walls are decorated
with yellow, red and gray flock
wallpaper above more panelling. The
patterned carpet is red and green,
while chandeliers hang from the
high ceiling. The red leather chairs
are decorated with the gold House
of Lords portcullis logo. Your table is
draped in stiff white linen on which
sits a vase of dusky pink roses.
You might think your fellow diners
are indeed Peers. The average age
must be above 50. With the men in
dark suits and ties of muted colours
and the women in discreet jewellery
and elegant frocks. Conversations are
conducted quietly.
The air carries a whisper of
expensive fragrances.
The menu is nostalgic, featuring the
likes of pea soup, baked salmon and
summer pudding. The soup features
broad beans and mint and is served
with crumbled goats cheese and pea
shoots. its got texture and depth,
though mine wasnt hot. The pastry in
the St georges classic mushroom volau-vent is light and crisp, the truffled
barnaise sauce taking the earthy
flavour a little deeper.
A main of slow-cooked ox cheek
with irish champ mash, heritage
carrots, salsa verde and jus is deep
and rich, the meat satisfyingly parting
on contact with a fork. That flesh is
so smoky and intense, its not even
polite.
The desserts are best of all. The
steamed date and walnut pudding
comes with a butterscotch sauce and
is topped with vanilla ice cream. This
is a real old-school English pud: sticky
and sweet, and forget your modern
nonsense about lighter food.
Parliamentary officials refer
to this aristocratic pop-up as the
Dissolution opening of the Peers
Dining Room dissolution meaning
that term is over for parliamentarians
and theyve all gone home ahead of
the general election. You dont need to
be dissolute as such, although i might
have hit the House of Lords Claret a
little enthusiastically.
You leave via the gift shop, with its
House of Lords teddy bears, golf balls
and chocolate boxes. im looking at a
bottle of House of Lords Champagne
as i write this. Washington Post

22 Sport

THE MYANMAR TIMES April 29, 2015

Tennis

Nishikori better
than Djokovic,
says mentor
J
apans Kei nishikori has
the ability to reach the summit of mens tennis and is
technically already better
than world number one novak Djokovic, according to his former
mentor.
shuzo Matsuoka told aFp on april
28 it was only a matter of time before nishikori, who broke into the
top five last season, captured his first
grand slam title.
Kei is hitting the ball harder and
controlling opponents more than last
year, Matsuoka said in an interview.
He has a decent chance of winning
the French Open. Hes knocking on the
door, for certain. Im not being biased
but he plays better tennis than Djokovic or [Rafa] nadal.
Matsuoka, who has watched nishikori develop since first encountering him as a shy 11-year-old, added,
That said, he knows there are still
questions over his mental strength
and that tennis is about more than
just pure talent.
seeing Kei dominating on clay
puts him right behind Djokovic in
terms of who you would fancy to win

right now. I dont think anyone would


write off his chances at the French
Open. He has a good shot.
nishikori, 25, who retained his
Barcelona title at the weekend to capture a ninth career tournament, learnt
a harsh lesson after being floored by
Croatian Marin Cilic in last years Us
Open final, said Matsuoka.
He had never reached a grand
slam final before and he felt the pressure for sure, said Matsuoka, who in
1992 became the first Japanese player
to win an aTp title. But its only a
matter of time before Kei wins a grand
slam. If he wins one, he could go on to
win a bunch.
Matsuoka believes that nishikori
has nothing to fear from the so-called
big four of mens tennis Djokovic, nadal, Roger Federer and andy
Murray.
Murray had it incredibly tough,
said Matsuoka, referring to the scots
agonising wait for a first major title.
He was coming up against the other
three at their absolute peak. But their
powers are fading a little now, without
a doubt, and a new generation of players are on the rise.

Clearly, Kei can beat those players


and this year he has a bigger chance of
winning a slam than last. In the next
two or three years, as long as he stays
fit, he will break through.
nishikori burst onto the scene as
an 18-year-old by winning in Delray
Beach as a 244th-ranked qualifier in
2008. He has become a huge celebrity
in Japan, with millions waking up early to watch his matches on television
during his run to the Us Open final.
Despite his recent success, nishikoris career has been plagued by
injuries, most notably in 2009 when
he needed elbow surgery and feared
he might not play again.
Hes tougher now, said Matsuoka.
and he can also play mind games if he
has too. He is very adept at reading his
opponents and out-psyching them. He
can lull you into thinking hes down
and out and then hit back and knock
you out in the fifth set.
For me there are two true geniuses
in the game Federer and Kei, added
Matsuoka. Their touch, their creativity. Kei still has to win a grand slam
but he is playing super tennis and can
smash that wall down. AFP

BadminTon

fooTBall

Malaysias Lee gets backdated doping ban


MalaysIan badminton star lee
Chong Wei was cleared on april 27
to resume his career and pursuit
of Olympic gold when he received
an eight-month, backdated ban for
doping.
The former long-time world number one can return to the court as
early as this week after the Badminton
World Federation found he accidentally ingested a banned substance.
sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin, who appeared at the press briefing with lee, said Malaysia also wanted him to compete in the southeast
asian Games in June.
lee, 32, who is eligible to resume
competition on May 1, had warned he
would retire if he was hit with a possible two-year ban that would have
ruled him out of next years Olympics.
He was delighted with the outcome
of a process which began at last augusts world championships, when he
tested positive for the banned antiinflammatory dexamethasone.
Im quite happy, lee told reporters at a press conference in Kuala
lumpur. I am very happy to go back
to the court.
The BWF said an anti-doping panel
found lee had been negligent by ingesting the substance, which was in
contaminated capsules containing a
food supplement.
But it was satisfied lee did not set
out to cheat, after studying evidence
given at a hearing in the netherlands.
The panel is convinced this is not
a case of doping with intent to cheat,
the panel found, according to a BWF
statement.
lee had previously said he received
the drug during stem-cell treatment
for a thigh injury before the world
championships, where he was runnerup to Chinas Chen long.
He was stripped of his world

Kei Nishikori sprays Cava as he celebrates his victory over Spanish tennis player
Pablo Andujar after the final of the ATP Barcelona Open on April 26. Photo: AFP

Victory could see


Ayeyawady advance
maTT RoeBuck
matt.d.roebuck@gmail.com

Malaysian badminton player Lee Chong Wei (middle), flanked by Malaysian


Minister for Youth and Sports Khairy Jamaluddin (left) and Badminton
Association of Malaysia deputy president Norza Zakaria (right), pose for pictures
after a press conference in Putrajaya on April 27. Photo: AFP

championships silver medal but allowed to keep his singles and team
bronzes from last years asian Games,
which he played before the failed
drugs test came to light.
Crucially, lee can now begin his
build-up to Rio de Janeiro next year,
where he will try to crown his career
by winning his first Olympic title.
lee said he accepted the BWFs
ruling and would be more careful to
avoid banned substances.
I can say I learned something from
these few months, said the soft-spoken
shuttler. I will be more careful now.
lee, a quiet, self-effacing athlete
known for shunning the limelight
while training obsessively, first became world number one in late 2008,
staying at or near the summit ever
since.

But he has repeatedly fallen short


in pursuit of the sports top prizes
the world and Olympic titles despite
reaching three world championship
finals and two Olympic deciders.
lees absence from the court has
dropped him from the top ranking all
the way down to 30th in the world.
Malaysian badminton officials had
told aFp they were hoping for a decision this week so that they would
know whether or not to include lee in
the May 10-17 sudirman Cup in China.
I agree with [the Badminton association of Malaysia] and Chong
Wei that he needs to get back into
form with as many competitions as
possible to ultimately qualify for the
2016 Olympic Games in Rio De Janiero after being out of action for eight
months, Khairy said.

ayeyaWaDy United boss Marjan


sekulovski expects a tough match today at yangons Thuwunna stadium as
his team hopes to book their place in
the knockout stages of the aFC Cup.
Were second in the group now but
six points still remain, whoever wins
those six points will go through, said
the Macedonian.
If lao want to go past the group
stages then they have to take home a
win. after tomorrows game I think
things will be a lot clearer in this
group. We might not need as many
points but now we must prepare to
win and reach the second stage.
The Myanmar side currently sits on
six points from four games in Group H
of the second-tier continental competition, two behind persib Bandung of
Indonesia, two ahead of new Radiant
of the Maldives and four ahead of lao
Toyota FC. That means if ayeyawady
can win and new Radiant lose to
persib, then on their third attempt
ayeyawady will qualify for the Round
of 16 for the first time.
We respect the lao team, They are a
strong team with national level players
and good foreign players. We expect to
face a good team as they have showed
their ability in the last four matches.
But we are undefeated in eight national league matches this season. We
are undefeated in 13 competitive matches and another seven friendly games. We
aim to keep up that level of performance
and results, said sekulovski at the prematch press conference yesterday.
In laos, ayeyawady took a two-goal
lead but then conceded two in three

minutes in a game that ended 2-2.


Tomorrow will be a different
game; both sides have more experience in the aFC Cup, said the coach.
His opposite number David Booth,
who also manages the laos national
side and is a former coach of Myanmar
agreed that his side faced a different
challenge today.
Tomorrow will be a completely different game players that were missing from the ayeyarwady side have
returned and I expect them to play a
much stronger team, said Booth.

Whoever wins
those six points will
go through.
marjan sekulovski
Ayeyawady United coach

speaking about his past experience


of Myanmar football, he noted, One
thing that stood out was the hunger
and willingness to work hard, to put
things together and to improve. Im
sure thats still the case and its the
foremost thing in football. Myanmar
players have that desire.
elsewhere in the aFC Cup, Mandalays yadanarbon FC are in Malaysia
to face pahang Fa, in a game where
both sides will be looking for a victory in the hopes of securing the last
qualification spot from Group G. Hong
Kongs south China have already secured the top spot before todays fixture with Global FC of the philippines.

Sport 23

www.mmtimes.com
OLYMPICS

India will not bid for Olympics, says IOC chief


IOC supremo Thomas Bach met Indian Prime minister Narendra modi
on april 27 with both leaders unanimous in their belief that it was too
early for the country to bid for the
Olympics.
The Indian media had been rife
with speculation that the modi government would sanction a bid for the
2024 summer Games, even if it was
only to test the waters.
a release from Indias official
Press Information Bureau did not
mention a bid being discussed between the prime minister and the
president of the International Olympic Committee.
The Prime minister sought the
IOC presidents support in making
India a hub of sports infrastructure,
sports technology, and sports equipment manufacturing, the release said.

The Prime minister expressed


his intention to promote India on the
global sports map.
Bach also ended speculation
about the bid, saying there was no
proposal from the prime minister
on India hosting the Games in the
future.
I was a bit surprised at the speculation for a bid because we thought
it was too late to have a successful
bid for 2024, Bach told reporters at
the end of the day-long trip.
I am happy Prime minister modi
also shared the same opinion.
Bach said a tripartite agreement
had been signed with the Indian government, the Indian Olympic association and the IOC to promote sports
in India.
India is a sleeping giant and we
discussed how to wake up this sleep-

ing giant, he said.


New Delhi successfully hosted
two asian Games in 1951 and 1982,
but the 2010 Commonwealth Games
attracted embarrassing headlines
due to corruption and delays in construction which modi would be
desperate to avoid.
With Tokyo due to host the
Games in 2020, asia is seen as an
unlikely venue for the 2024 edition,
where Paris, Hamburg, Rome and
Budapest are tipped as leading contenders.
The deadline for submitting an
interest in the bid is mid-september.
The Indian Express reported on
april 27 that the sports ministry had
submitted a dossier to the Prime
ministers Office highlighting the
pros and cons of hosting the Games.
The dossier projected a budget of

between Us$12 billion to $15 billion,


with New Delhi being suggested as
the bid city, the paper said quoting
unnamed ministry sources.
Despite being the worlds secondmost populous nation, India has a
poor record in Olympic competition.
shooter abhinav Bindra, who
won gold in 2008 in the 10-metre air
rifle, remains the countrys only individual champion, while the last of
Indias eight field hockey titles came
back in 1980.
The medal haul from the London
Games in 2012 was two silver and
four bronze, leaving India 55th in the
medal table.
Bach met Indian Olympic association officials and attended a lunch
hosted by sports minister sarbananda sonowal before meeting modi in
the evening. AFP

MOUntAIneerInG

CrICket

Taylor in line
to lead newlook England
James Taylor could find himself captain of a much-changed england oneday side when the squad to play Ireland is announced on april 28.
so crowded is englands fixture
schedule that none of the players
selected for the third and final Test
against the West Indies in Barbados,
which starts later this week, will be
available for the match against the
Irish at malahide, near Dublin, on
may 8, as the squad are only due
back from the Caribbean the previous day.
However, england coach Peter
moores and his assistant Paul Farbrace, who have new bosses to impress at the england and Wales Cricket Board in chair Colin Graves and
chief executive Tom Harrison, may fly
straight on from London to Dublin.
While it is possible that players
currently in the West Indies who are
not selected for the third Test a
group set to include Jonny Bairstow,
adil Rashid and mark Wood could
be released early to join up with the
one-day squad, englands white-ball
team will still need a new captain.
eoin morgan replaced Test skipper alastair Cook as captain during
a wretched World Cup for england
in australia and New Zealand, where
they were knocked out in the first
round and failed to beat a Test side.
But morgan has already been ruled
out of next weeks clash with his native
Ireland after being given clearance
by the eCB to play for the sunrisers
Hyderabad in the lucrative Twenty20
Indian Premier League, along with fellow World Cup squad member Ravi
Bopara.
as a result, Nottinghamshire batsman Taylor, a relatively experienced
one-day performer having made his
england debut in the same fixture four
years ago, is in line to lead a side that
could feature county colleague alex
Hales and highly rated Hampshire
batsman James Vince. AFP

tennIS

Wimbledon
prize money
rises again
Tragedy has struck the Everest climbing community for the second year in a row. Photo: AFP

China cancels climbs


on Everests north face

HINa cancelled all spring


climbs on the north face of
mount everest, state media said on april 27, after
an earthquake in neighbouring Nepal triggered a deadly
avalanche elsewhere on the worlds
highest mountain.
more than 400 climbers have
descended to safety in Tibet since
the quake, Xinhua News agency
reported, citing the regional sports
bureau.

Climbers stranded for two days at


high altitudes on the Nepalese side of
the mountain were rescued by helicopters on april 27.
Rescue teams in three helicopters
were running missions to Camps
One and Two following the april
25 avalanche that killed 18 people
further down the mountain at base
camp.
The 150-odd stranded climbers
rescued on april 27 in Nepal, who
were not thought to be seriously in-

jured, had their land route down the


mountain blocked by slabs of ice and
snow brought down in the avalanche.
There were more than 800 people at different altitudes on the
8848-metre (29,029-foot) peak when
the avalanche hit.
It was triggered by the massive
earthquake which has killed more
than 3500 people across Nepal
and devastated parts of the capital
Kathmandu.
Nepal has not yet decided wheth-

er to halt expeditions on its side of


everest.
It is possible that climbing might
not continue this year. However,
there has been no official decision,
said tourism department head Tulsi
Gautam.
many had travelled to Nepal for
the start of the annual climbing season, which was cancelled last year
after 16 sherpa guides were killed in
what was previously the deadliest disaster in the mountains history. AFP

WINNeRs of this years Wimbledon


singles titles will share a prize fund of
1.88 million (Us$2.87 million) after
organisers on april 28 announced a
fourth consecutive annual increase in
prize money.
There has been a rise of 7 percent
from the 1.76 million paid to the singles champions in 2014, with overall
prize money leaping from 14.6 million to 26.75 million in the past four
years.
It preserves the tournaments status as the highest-paying competition
in professional tennis.
Without the worlds best tennis
players, we wouldnt have the worlds
best tennis tournament, all england
Lawn Tennis Club chair Philip Brook
told a press conference.
and we recognise the players are
an essential ingredient of our championships. The level of prize money
is affordable to this championship,
so we feel its important that we
should reflect that in what we pay
the players.
This years Wimbledon will take
place from June 29 to July 12, with
serbias Novak Djokovic and Petra Kvitova of the Czech Republic the respective defending champions in the mens
and womens events. AFP

Sport
24 THE MYANMAR TIMES APRIl 29, 2015

SPORT EDITOR: Matt Roebuck | matt.d.roebuck@gmail.com

Malaysias drugs ban Lee


may make SEA Games
SPORT 22

GENERAL AUNG SAN SHIELD

Best not enough for Southern


MaTT ROebuck
matt.d.roebuck@gmail.com

eGULAr observers of Myanmar football might have


expected a whitewash when
Best United succumbed to
Southern Myanmar 2-0 at
the Aung San Stadium on April 27, but
at times the minnows threatened to
pull off the first upset of the General
Aung San Shield.
Southern currently sit atop of the
MNL-2, unbeaten in 2015, with a fourpoint lead and game in hand over horizon Fc. Best United sit third from
the bottom of that division with a firsthalf of the season that has included an
8-1 defeat at the hands of horizon.
But the former futsal side held
out for 53 minutes without conceding and the representatives of Mon
State and tanintharyi were clearly
panicked. even the thunderous Ye
Lwin Aung volley from the edge of
the box that gave Southern the lead
did little to settle the nerves of the
Southern side that looked rusty from
the thingyan break.
in the first half the match favourites had resorted to ever-more-frantic
attempts to take the lead and in doing so had left themselves vulnerable
to the attacks of Best United. As the
Southern team blasted pot shots high
over the opposition bar, Best threatened to deliver what could have constituted the biggest upset in the professional game in Myanmar.
the expected game plan in cup
mismatches is for the lesser side on
paper to attempt to break up play and
stop the stronger side from developing rhythm. While Best certainly collected a good number of yellow cards
for their efforts, this approach was of
limited value against a Southern team
who seemed happy to use their own
physicality in an attempt to dominate
the opposition.
Yet it was another piece of controlled play in the 78th minute that
gave Ye Lwin Aung his brace when
once again a cross picked out the goal-

Ye Lwin Aung opens the scoring for Southern Myanmar FC with a thunderous volley from the edge of the box. Photo: Aung Htay Hlaing

scorer. this time the ball was a deep


cross played toward the back post
which found the dangerman ready to
play the ball calmly back across and
past Aung Aung, the United keeper.
it was not only Southerns lack of
spark that held back the side in what
should have been an easy victory. in
the 64th minute Aung Aung should
have walked after he stuck out a

clumsy leg to trip Soe kyaw thu. As


the Southern attacker broke free of
the United defence, and Aung Aung
rushed toward him, it was plain to see
for the entire crowd what was about
to happen. Strangely, when it did, the
referee ko ko Naing who was well
placed to make a decision showed
mercy on the only man between Soe
kyaw thu and the goal. the crowd

roared with disbelief as Aung Aung


received a yellow card and Southern
were awarded a free-kick on the edge
of the box.
Southern now advance to the round
of 16, a good opportunity for a team
that were relegated from the top flight
last year to give their fans a little extra
to cheer about after enduring a dreadful
2014. On July 14, they will face kachin

representatives Manaw Myay Fc, who


are currently struggling in League 1,
thereby representing an opportunity for
Southern to start a cup run.
the second round of Myanmars
senior knockout competition will commence on July 11 and will continue until July 14, with a game a day played at
4pm at both the Aung San and thuwunna stadiums.

Rakhine rampant in first round Dagon clash


A hAt-trick from Jordan Ayuba
helped top-flight rakhine United overcome their lower league opponents
Dagon Fc 4-1 in the opening round of
this years General Aung San Shield,
the Myanmar Football Federations
senior knockout competition.
At Yangons thuwunna Stadium,
Ayuba opened the scoring after only
6 minutes but Dagon drew level in
the 16th minute through thiha. But
the more experienced side came out
on top thanks to Ayuba in the 56th
and 66th minutes before Nyi Nyi Naing completed a dominant second-half
performance for rakhine.
Our play in the first half wasnt
up to the standards i expect from my
players, but i was very pleased with
the way we came out in the second,
said rakhine coach Win tin after the
game.
the most important thing is the
victory. Dagon showed themselves a
capable side, particularly through the
effective teamwork they demonstrated
in the first half, he added.

Hat-trick hero Jordan Abuya . Photo:


RUFC/Facebook

id like to praise Ayuba for his performance and the way he supports the
rest of the team.
im extremely proud of everyone,
the players, the staff and the fans,
Ayuba told Uniteds facebook page.
the Dagon Fc coach thet tin admitted that his young charges had

difficulty coping with Ayuba and fellow African Bernard Achaw.


My players are a young side and
lack experience in comparison to the
rakhine team, and we have no foreign
players, said thet tin.
the aim of our side is to develop
and blood new talent for the league
and hopefully the national side. Our
focus now is on climbing our way to
second in the MNL-2 and winning
promotion to the top division.
rakhines victory means they will
face the troubled Nay Pyi taw Fc, who
after losing a number of players in the
off-season with off-the-pitch accusations of not paying their staff ,have
struggled in the early half of the season.
We have plenty of time to prepare
for that match, said Win tin of the
game that will be played on July 14 at
thuwunna Stadium.
Nay Pyi taw are a stronger
side,who will be tough to defeat, but
we are not worried about facing any
team in this competition.

General Aung San Shield Round One


Mawyawady

0-2

Horizon

11 - 1

Pong Gan FC

Myawady FC

1-2
(aet)

GFA FC

Silver Stars

2-4

University FC

Southern Myanmar FC

2-0

Best United

Dagon FC

1-4

Rakhine United

Hanthawady