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DAILY EDITION

ISSUE 36 | WEDNESDAY, MAY 6, 2015


NEWS 3

Second death camp


found in Thai jungle
Thai authorities find second camp
with graves of Myanmar and
Bangladeshi trafficking victims, days
after recovering remains of 26 people
in jungle near border with Malaysia.
NEWS 5

PR plan not dead yet


Upper house MPs say they will continue
with a plan to approve a bill to
introduce proportional representation
for the 2015 election, despite missing
an April 30 deadline set by the Union
Election Commission.

BUSINESS 8

Red tape holds up first


legal wine imports
Wine suppliers have not yet applied
for import licences due to difficulties
meeting government requirements,
sources say, almost two months after
imports were legalised.
BUSINESS 9

PAGE

PHOTO: WA LONE

Protesters hold signs campaigning for the cancellation of a planned 1280-megawatt coal
project in Mon States Ye township yesterday. Organisers say up to 6000 people attended
the rally in Ann Din village, where Toyo-Thai plans to build the US$2.8 billion plant
under an agreement signed with the government last month.

Australian oil firm


pulls out of concession
After being bought out by a Chinabased firm and delisted from the
Australian stock exchange, Roc Oil
withdraws from consortium that won
the rights to a shallow-water block.

Splinter fears at Wa summit


Three armed ethnic groups battling the Tatmadaw in northeastern Shan State have offered to quit from the
Nationwide Ceasefire Coordination Team, but Wa leaders say doing so would jeopardise the peace process. NEWS 3

2 News

Factory
owners push
back against
proposed
wage rate

THE MYANMAR TIMES MAY 6, 2015

YE TOWNSHIP, MON STATE


U Aung Naing Oo, a representative
in the Mon State Hluttaw, speaks
at a rally in Ye townships Ann Din
village yesterday. Photo: Wa Lone

NYAN LYNN AUNG


29.nyanlynnaung@gmail.com
MINIMUM wage negotiations are
inching toward a compromise far below the amount demanded by protesting labourers, though garment factory
owners are still holding out for little
or no pay boost, according to a representative from the countrys peak business body.
We are arranging a meeting
with garment factory owners soon
and we are planning to negotiate
based on the K3000 minimum salary that the government pays its
personnel, said U Aye Lwin, secretary of the Union of Myanmar Federation of Chambers of Commerce
and Industry.
While most private industry employers have agreed to a minimum
wage set between K3000 to K4000
(US$3-4), U Aye Lwin said garment
industry bosses are the last holdout.
The garment factory owners have
been unwilling to lift pay rates beyond
K1500 a day.
Striking factory workers have demanded wages fixed at a K5600-a-day
baseline.
The garment factories claim either
of the proposed wage bumps would
harm their businesses.
We could not pay K4000 without
hurting the quality of the product,
said U Khin Maung Aye, owner of the
Latt War garment factory.
He added that if the government
reduced the costs associated with
operating a factory, such as higher
electricity rates than those charged to
residential areas, a K3000 minimum
could be considered.
We already reported to the government about the difficulties we are
facing and we are trying to discuss
how to reduce those necessary costs
with the relevant administrative departments, said U Aye Lwin, who emphasised the need for what he called a
win-win solution.
However, Ko Tun Naing, a worker
at the Sun Pleasure mattress factory,
said the minimum wage should be
based around meeting the basic living
costs of workers, not on what employers can afford.
An employer might have to pay all
these unnecessary fees, but it is not
a good-enough reason for not paying
proper wages, he said.

No coal, no Toyo-Thai: Mon


villagers rally against plant
WA LONE
walone14@gmail.com

A JOINT project to build coal-fired


power stations involving the Union
government and a foreign investor
has divided local residents in Mon
State. Yesterday about 6000 villagers
gathered to protest against the project
in Ann Din village, about 10 kilometres (6.2 miles) from the town of Ye.
The Thai-based Japanese company Toyo-Thai signed an agreement
with the government on April 9 to
develop the power station amid accusations from locals of unfair dealing.
Under the agreement with the
Department of Hydropower Planning, Toyo-Thai will develop two
640-megawatt coal-fired power
plants with a total investment of
US$2.8 billion, according to a company statement.
Ko Min Aung Htoo, an environmentalist with the Myanmar Alliance

for Transparency and Accountability


(MATA), said the company and the
government have not been open
about their project with local people.
The monks are leading public
opinion against it, he said.
Yesterday, the road to Ann Dinn
was lined with houses displaying No
Coal placards, skull-and-crossbones
posters and demands for the protection of the environment. At the rally,
participants held similar signs, and
shouted, No coal, no Toyo-Thai
protect our natural environment.
Though Ye township police issued
a permit for the demonstration, residents said protesters from two local
villages, Nwe and Nga Mya, had been
prevented from attending by a local
pro-government militia group.
Mon ethnic armed groups are also
said to support the local people and
reportedly took part in the protest.
Mon political parties, the National
League for Democracy and civil society in Ye township also joined the
demonstration.
U Aung Naing Oo, the state MP
for Chaungzon township, said the
Mon State parliament had approved

a report he had submitted opposing


the project on April 8, the day before
the agreement was signed in Nay Pyi
Taw.
The government should listen to
the people. They dont want the coal
project in their area, he said.
U Aung Naing Win said the Yangon-based Win Yaung Chi Oo company, apparently on behalf of ToyoThai, had collected 6000 signatures
from residents in support of the project. Win Yaung Chi Oo had bought
500 acres of land near Ann Din village for the project, he said.

BILLION US$

2.8

Estimated cost of the 1280-megawatt


coal-fired power plant planned for
Mon States Ye township

They told the residents when


they bought the land that it would be
used for fish and prawn ponds, but
later they announced they had made
an alliance with Toyo-Thai. I think
that is dishonest, he said.
The Myanmar Times attempted
to contact Daw Htay Win, the director of Win Yaung Chi Oo, without
success yesterday.
U Kyaw Thu, the secretary of
Kyon Laung village NLD branch, accused both the government and the
company of lacking transparency. I
understand that the project might
provide some benefits for local people, but were concerned about the
possible side effects, he said.
Ye township residents have long
complained about the high cost of
electricity locally. In the absence of a
government power line, private companies charge up to K600 a kilowatt
hour, about 10 times the rate from
the national grid.
But U Kyaw Thu said the government needed to find a better way
of providing electricity. The power
plant could pollute soil, air and water
in our region, he said.

www.mmtimes.com

NEWS EDITOR: Thomas Kean | tdkean@gmail.com

News 3

Second abandoned
death camp found
LAIGNEE BARRON
laignee@gmail.com

IN PICTURES

PHOTO: PETER VRANSK

Kachin States amber deposits helped scientists discover a new


species of extinct predatory cockroaches that lived alongside
the dinosaurs. Manipulator modificaputis, found exclusively
in Myanmar amber fossils, resembles a praying mantis with
elongated limbs and a flexible head on a long neck, characteristics
scientists ascribe to a predator. The 100-million-year-old specimen
was mined at a site called Noije Bum, about 20 kilometres
southwest of Tanai. Noije Bum is one of the most important sites
for dinosaur-age amber in the world, according to Peter Vransk,
one of the authors on a paper about the new finding and a
scientist at the Geological Institute in Bratislava, Slovakia.

Resignations suggest
split in armed groups
The Nationwide Ceasefire Coordination Team is on the verge of fracturing with
three ethnic armed groups involved in the Kokang clashes threatening a walkout

YE MON

GUY DINMORE

THREE allied ethnic armed groups


fighting government forces in the
Kokang border region have proposed
quitting the 16-member Nationwide
Ceasefire Coordination Team, which
concluded a draft nationwide ceasefire accord with government representatives in late March.
Naing Han Thar, leader of the
NCCT, said the three groups had declared their intention to resign from
the collective negotiating body on
May 4, during ceasefire talks attended by 12 ethnic groups in the United
Wa State Army (UWSA) stronghold
of Pangkham on the border with
China. The issue had not been decided, he said.
The three factions are the Myanmar National Democratic Alliance
Army (MNDAA) an ethnic Chinese
militia which has been battling the
Tatmadaw in the Kokang area since
February 9 and two of its allies,
the Taang National Liberation Army
(TNLA) and the Arakan Army (AA).
The government and the Tat-

madaw have rejected offers of negotiations with the MNDAA and


instead pursued military operations
in Kokang throughout the nationwide ceasefire talks with the NCCT
in Yangon in March. Heavy fighting
was reported yesterday from the
border by a Chinese-language website, Myanmar Online.
A splintering of the NCCT, if confirmed, could help the Tatmadaw
achieve its objective of taking total
control of Kokang while neutralising
other armed ethnic groups through
the ceasefire accord. But the accord
still has to be endorsed by leaders of
the groups represented by the NCCT,
and the date and venue for that
meeting has yet to be decided.
The UWSA, the most powerful
of the countrys non-state armed
groups, with close ties to both China
and the MNDAA, said it opposed the
resignation proposal even though
the UWSA itself is not a member of
the NCCT and has had its own bilateral ceasefire with the government
since 1989.
U Aung Myint, the UWSA spokesperson, said yesterday they had
asked the three groups to reconsider.
We dont want them to resign
from the NCCT because it can affect
the peace process. If the government
doesnt want to sign the nationwide

ceasefire accord with these three


groups, then it cant call it a nationwide ceasefire, he said.
A major objective of the UWSA in
calling the summit of ethnic leaders
in Pangkham was to ensure that the
Kokang militia was kept in the peace
process. Analysts said they assumed
that China, which has urged U Thein
Seins government to negotiate with
the MNDAA, had endorsed the summit. The meeting began on May 1
and is scheduled to end today.
Mai Aike Kyaw, a spokesperson
for the TNLA, blamed the government for his groups decision to
quit the NCCT, saying it had continued military operations during the
ceasefire talks, refused to recognise
it as an armed ethnic group and put
pressure on the UWSA to exclude it
from the Pangkham meeting.
The Tatmadaw has also started
using the Unlawful Association Act
to crack down on ethnic groups not
recognised by the government. Last
month the authorities in Rakhine
State began arresting civilians for
contact with the Arakan Army and
on May 3 the Tatmadaw warned media outlets in Pangkham they would
be prosecuted if they reported statements by the MNDAA, whose military commander, Peng Deren, is attending the talks.

THAI police announced yesterday


the discovery of a second remote
camp believed to contain human remains of Myanmar and Bangladeshi
migrants who died while being held
for ransom.
The abandoned detention site,
which was riddled with five shallow
graves, is barely 1 kilometre from
the first camp, on Thailands border
with Malaysia, where authorities exhumed 26 bodies over the weekend.
Investigating police have identified at least five other mass grave
locations near the first camp, the
Bangkok Post reported.
But according to migrant rights
advocates, the network of secret
death camps extends much further,
with thousands of makeshift detention sites lining the Thai-Malaysia
border. Refugee seekers, mainly
those smuggled out from Rakhine
State via perilous sea voyages, are reportedly held at the remote locations
while traffickers attempt to extort
large sums of money from families
before allowing onward passage.
A United Nations report released
in December estimated more than
53,000 people from Bangladesh and
Myanmar undertook such a journey
through Malaysia and Thailand last
year alone.
On May 4, Thai Police Commissioner Somyot Pumpanmuang met
investigators in Thailands southern
Songkhla province to determine the
extent of the traffickers secret holding camps, according to Thai state
media.
Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha expressed concern on May 4 that
some government officials might be
involved.
But while four local administrative officials near the Songkhla
camps have been arrested along with
a fourth Myanmar suspected human
trafficker, the Thai police commissioner announced on May 4 that six
officers with close ties to the masterminds of the Rohingya trafficking
ring would only be transferred.
The assistance of the police isnt
just about them looking away. They

are key players very involved in the


trafficking, said U Maung Kyaw Nu,
president of the Burmese Rohingya
Association of Thailand.
Observers
have
questioned
whether Thailand has more than
a cosmetic interest in overhauling
its entrenched trafficking system or
in uprooting the traffickers secret
holding sites.
Chris Lewa of the Arakan Project
said the recent raids on the camps
represent just one of the mediatised
antics the Thai government has undertaken in the last couple months to
demonstrate action.

[The Thai police]


are key players
very involved in the
trafficking.
U Maung Kyaw Nu
Rohingya rights activist

Thailand is still smarting from


a bruised reputation after the US
State Department downgraded
the country to the lowest possible
ranking on its annual Trafficking in
Persons Report. The next report is
due out in June. The State Department declined to comment on any
possible ranking for Thailand, but
a department official told Reuters
yesterday that the United States,
Thailand, the UN and the International Organization for Migration
are in conversation about the secret
holding camps.
The unnamed spokesperson also
urged a transparent investigation,
in remarks that seemed to echo a
2013 statement following a Reuters
investigation publicising the secret
gulags.
Activists have been putting pressure on the government to crack
down on these camps for two or
three or even more years, but it hasnt
happened, said U Maung Kyaw Nu.
They know [the camps] exist, but its
a question of political will.

4 News
Chief Executive Officer
Tony Child
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Editorial Director U Thiha Saw
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Deputy Chief Operating Officer Tin Moe Aung
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EDITORIAL
Editor MTE Thomas Kean
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Editor MTM Sann Oo
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Editor Special Publications Myo Lwin
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Editor-at-Large Douglas Long
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THE MYANMAR TIMES MAY 6, 2015

Ship cleared to leave Yangon port after collision


SHWEGU THITSAR
khaingsabainyein@gmail.com
AS the investigation into the collision of two ships in Yangon River on
April 26 proceeds, the container ship
involved was allowed to leave Yangon
Port, said a Shipping Agency Department spokesperson.
U Aung Myo Tin said the container
Panja Bhum, carrying 525 containers of beans, garments and other
goods, had been cleared to depart for

Singapore on May 1.
In the collision, which occurred between Wardan jetty and Ahlone dockyard, the sand carrier Zwe Myint Myat
Tun 3 broke in two. The front section
immediately sank, and the rear part
drifted with the current before sinking
near Pansodan jetty.
U Ko Ko Naing, director of the
Maritime Safety, Security and Environmental Protection Division of the
Department of Marine Administration, told The Myanmar Times on

April 30 that the departure had been


approved by mutual consent.
The investigation is being carried
out by the Maritime Safety, Security
and Environmental Protection Division, the Marine Engineering Division,
and the Legal and Technical Standards
Division of the DMA. U Ko Ko Naing
said the investigation was expected to
be concluded in two weeks.
According to an evaluation made
by ship owners, the sand carrier sustained more than US$300,000 of

damage, and the container ship suffered losses relating to the delay in
their schedule, he said.
Negotiations are proceeding. Both
ships have insurance, which is being
taken into account in calculating the
compensation. Both sides will reach a
compromise solution. When the investigation is complete we will release a
statement and forward it to the ship
owners. With their consent, we will
make it public.
Translation by Zar Zar Soe

News Editor MTE Guy Dinmore


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Business Editor MTE Jeremy Mullins
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Kayleigh Long
The Pulse Editor MTE Charlotte Rose
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Special Publications Editor MTE Wade Guyitt
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Regional Affairs Correspondent Roger Mitton
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Sub-Editors Peter Swarbrick, Laignee Barron
Chief Sub Editor MTM Aye Sapay Phyu
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An official speaks at the launch of BRT lite in Yangon on May 4. Photo: Aung Htay Hlaing

Government seeks private


funding for BRT system
Bus network would be 60pc privately owned, with anticipated total cost of about K100 billion (US$91.8 million)

AYE
NYEIN
WIN

Publisher U Thiha (Thiha Saw), 01021


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ayenyeinwin.mcm@gmail.com

A PUBLIC transport scheme that


would provide an express bus service
along 150 kilometres of Yangons main
roads could be available within three
months, transport chiefs hope.
Known as BRT lite, the scheme is
based on a plan drawn up in 2013 by
the Japan International Cooperation
Agency (JICA) for a Bus Rapid Transit
system intended to cover much of the
city. The less-ambitious version was
chosen because it costs less than the
original plan, which calls for dedicated bus lanes and reconfigured traffic
signals.
To help pay for the scheme, the government is proposing a so-called Private-Public Partnership system (PPP),
it was announced at a press conference in Yangon on May 4.
For the first stage of the project,
with an estimated cost of K25 billion
(US$22.97 million), the government
would provide K10 billion and invite
the public to invest the remaining
K15 billion. The total sum envisaged
for the project would be about K100
billion.
U Maung Aung, an adviser with the
Ministry of Commerce, told the press
conference the public would be able to

buy shares at K100,000 apiece.


In the PPP system, the government would take care of the infrastructure, such as the roads, with its
40 percent investment. The rest of the
money would come from the public,
he said.
The government has not yet stated
what infrastructure upgrades it will
make with the K10 billion. While existing bus lines will continue as normal,
it is also unclear whether they will be
able to benefit from the infrastructure
upgrades, or whether these will be reserved for the BRT service.

149.9
Length of the BRT system upon
full implementation, including 25.7
kilometres for the first phase

U Maung Aung said the proposed


PPP system would improve the safety
and reliability of the bus service by using left-hand drive buses with air-conditioning, operated by salaried drivers
and using the iPay card system to collect fares, controlled by a centralised
body.
Public transport is not safe now

because private owners maximise


their profit. Their drivers break traffic
laws. Private owners are welcome to
participate in the PPP according to the
conditions we define, said U Maung
Aung.
The system would initially run
from its base in Htaukkyant to 8
Mile junction, from where buses
will travel along both Pyay and Kabar Aye Pagoda roads a trip of
25.68km. An extension to phase one
will see routes added to cross streets
connecting Hlaing Tharyar to 8 Mile,
Dagon University to Parami Road
and Thilawa Special Economic Zone
to Botahtaung Pagoda Road.
U Tin Maung Kyi, head of YCDCs
roads and bridges department, said
the entire system would eventually
cover 149.91km.
We chose the BRT [lite] system in
order to avoid delay. Yangon City Development Committee and the Ministry of Construction can maintain these
roads, he said.
There is no limit to the number of
shares investors can buy. This will
save commuters time, and the card
system for fare payment will be more
convenient. Customers want something done about congestion, and the
president has directed us to implement the system within three months
if we can, said Yangon Region Chief
Minister U Myint Swe.
U Maung Aung added, Yangon is
growing in wealth and population.
Its time to get people out of their

cars and into public transport.


He said the governments other attempts to relieve Yangons traffic congestion were working, citing the Ministry of Commerces requirement since
January 1 that car importers show
that they can provide sufficient parking space for imported vehicles. As a
result, 5000 fewer cars were imported
in March, he said. In the past, 15,000
or 20,000 cars were being imported
every month.
U Ko Ko Naing, who owns a bus
on both the No 31 and G2000 lines,
said he wasnt concerned about the
threat from a government-backed BRT
system.
We will face many rivals. The
commuters will also have many choices, he said. But we arent worried
In that system, the buses are owned
by many people, unlike us. We can
take care of our buses well, because
its natural that the owner wants to
look after their property.
Another owner, U Min Zaw, from
North Okkalapa, said he welcomed the
system and would consider taking part.
But the government should not
discriminate against non-BRT buses,
he said.
He added that the fare should
depend on the distance travelled,
rather than a fixed amount as used
on the special buses. For example, if you travel 1 mile, you pay
K20. I dont want special buses anymore all buses should be treated
the same.

News 5

www.mmtimes.com

Hluttaw reps criticise Ministry of


Agriculture for Nay Pyi Taw focus
HTOO THANT
thanhtoo.npt@gmail.com
THE Agriculture and Irrigation Ministry has been accused of favouring
the capital in its efforts to boost productivity of the nations farms.
Each year, the ministry allocates
funding to upgrade private farmland
into newly demarcated parcels of land
denominated in hectares, with access
paths and irrigation channels. The regular size and shape make it easier to apply mechanised agriculture to cultivate
the plots, resulting in higher yields.
But the program has mostly focused on Nay Pyi Taw in part, critics
say, because the ministry likes to show
off the farms to visiting dignitaries.
Amyotha Hluttaw representative
U Nane Khin Paung from Chin State
said the practice should be expanded
to other regions and states in need of
development.
He said modern terrace cultivation should be introduced into
mountainous Chin State instead of
slash-and-burn farming that leads to
deforestation.

Another upper house representative, U Myat Nyarna Soe, agreed that


the farm upgrade program needed
to be expanded to others areas that
have less development and where
poverty rates are high.
The government needs to help
them increase their agricultural production, he said.
The ministry says it plans to expand the project, but lacks the funds
to do so. In the meantime, it will continue to put the capital first.
On April 30, U Soe Hlaing, director general of the ministrys Agricultural Mechanisation Department,
told The Myanmar Times that the department would extend the practice
to about 700 hectares (1500 acres) of
farmlands in Tatkon township, inside
the Nay Pyi Taw Union Territory, in
2015-16.
We are not sure whether this will
be done after the monsoon paddy
harvest or right now, he said.
The project is a boon for Nay Pyi
Taw residents, as it leads to higher
land prices once the fields are upgraded, said U Myo Linn Aung, a

farmer from Pyinmana township.


In the past, farmland was divided up into various sizes and shapes,
which made it difficult for farmers to
plough or harvest their crops in time.
Rearranging the land into standard
sizes and shapes, and adding paths
and irrigation canals, helped solve
those problems and also increased
land prices where standardisation
took place, he said.
U Win Hlaing Oo, deputy director of the Department of Agriculture,
said there were more than 160,000
acres of farmland growing paddy in
Nay Pyi Taw, and more than 10,000
acres of farmland had been demarcated there for mechanised use.
Most regularised plots are in Dekkhinathiri township, with others in
Zabuthiri, Pobbathiri, Ottarathiri
and Pyinmana townships. The ministry also plans to apply the practice
to Zeyathiri, Lewe and Tatkon townships in Nay Pyi Taw.
However, other projects have been
established in Bago, Sagaing, Yangon,
Mandalay and Ayeyarwady regions, he
said. Translation by Thiri Min Htun

Tourists have their photo taken atop a temple in Bagan. Photo: Si Thu Lwin

Visitor numbers, entrance-fee


income rise at Bagan zone
SI THU LWIN
sithulwin.mmtimes@gmail.com
CASH is rolling into Bagan as foreign
tourists bring dollars with them, local officials say. The trend is likely to
continue, as the entry fee to the cultural zone was last year doubled from
US$10 to $20.
U Nyein Lwin, deputy director of
the Bagan branch of the culture ministrys Department of Archaeology and
National Museum, told The Myanmar
Times on May 1 that staff shortages
meant they had trouble collecting the
fee from all visitors.
We rely on hotels and entry-point
gates to let us know about incoming

tourists, he said.
In fiscal year 2013-14, 195,372 tourists brought in $2.828 million, rising

MILLION US$

4.1

Income from foreigner entrance fees at


Bagan archaeological zone in 2014-15,
with 241,965 visitors

in the following year to 241,965 tourists and $4.109 million.


As of the first few weeks of the current financial year, which began on
April 1, nearly 10,000 visitors have already spent nearly $200,000, according to the department figures.
Though the number of foreign
guests coming to Bagan Museum fell
slightly, from 10,494 in 2013-14 to
10,213 in 2014-15, last years visitors
still brought in more than K51 million, compared to the K47 million and
$5315 brought in by local and foreign
tourists the year before.
More than 300 tourists visited between April 1 and 24, spending K1.5
million. Translation by Emoon

PR not dead
yet, says bill
committee
MPs say they will continue with plan to draft bill
on proportional representation for 2015 election

LUN MIN
MANG
lunminlm@gmail.com

UPPER house MPs have dismissed


a Union Election Commission
deadline to introduce a bill on proportional voting, saying they will
proceed with plans to finalise the
bill this month. The comments
cast doubt on which voting system
will be used in November for upper
house seats, just as it appeared firstpast-the-post would remain in place.
In November, the upper house,
or Amyotha Hluttaw, voted to introduce proportional voting in this
years election. However, MPs remain bitterly divided on the proposal, with some calling for a Constitutional Tribunal ruling on the legality
of proportional representation.
This has resulted in a series of
delays. The Union Election Commission responded by sending parliament a letter saying there would
be little possibility of introducing
proportional voting for the coming
election unless the bill committee
finished its draft by the end of April.
That deadline has come and
gone, with no bill in sight.
Several weeks ago, a UEC official
explained the commissions concerns, telling a local journal that the
delay in enacting the bill for proportional representation would affect
the curriculum for voter education.
The education program would take
on greater importance if proportional voting was introduced, the
official said, because the voting system has not previously been used in
Myanmar.
But the houses bill committee
appears to have not given up hope
of introducing legislation to change
the voting system for Novembers
election.
We will continue doing what we
have to do, committee chair U Khin
Maung Yee, a Union Solidarity and
Development Party representative
from Ayeyarwady Region, told The
Myanmar Times.
The UEC is doing its duty and
we are doing ours. The UECs warning has no impact on the hluttaws
actions, he said.
But when parliament resumes on
May 11, the bill committee will have
to convince not only the commission
but also increasingly sceptical MPs
that the electoral reform ship has
not already sailed at least for 2015.
Even Daw Khin Wine Kyi, the
National Democratic Force MP who
first floated the idea in June 2014,
said she thought there was nearly
zero chance of changing so late in
the game.
Since the UEC informed [parliament] before Thingyan [about the
April 30 deadline], I doubt it will be
possible to use the voting system for
the coming election, she said. But I
think the Amyotha Hluttaw will continue to develop the bill into a law
for elections after 2015, she said.
To gather feedback on the proposed bill, the Amyotha Hluttaw
held a three-day hearing from April
6. Views were mixed: Some supporters of proportional representation
agreed it was now too late to change

the system for Novembers vote,


while others insisted there was still
time.
But many others particularly
from the National League for Democracy and ethnic minority parties remain strongly opposed to
proportional voting, which is seen
as benefitting the Union Solidarity
and Development Party and smaller
ethnic Burmese parties, such as the
NDF.
Opponents generally argue that
the system is too complex and will
be hard for voters to understand.
Ethnic minority parties also express concern that the system would
enable candidates from non-local
groups, such as the Burmar, to win
seats in minority areas.
In January, 26 MPs opposed
to proportional voting, including
Rakhine National Party leader U
Aye Maung, sent a request through
Speaker U Khin Aung Myint to the
Constitutional Tribunal, asking it to
check whether proportional voting
was in line with the constitution.
Constitutional concerns already
forced MPs in the lower house to
abandon a proposed switch.
However, the tribunal responded that it could not make a decision on proportional voting in the
upper house until a bill has been
developed.

If we can finish all


the procedures in
parliament in May,
I think it is still
possible to adopt
the voting system.
U Win Naing Shein
Upper house bill committee

Some parliamentary observers


say MPs should abandon their push
for proportional voting in the November election.
Even if a bill is soon approved
for introducing proportional representation, it will create a big burden
for the UEC and the voters, said Ko
Htin Kyaw Aye, deputy director of
Open Myanmar Initiative, a parliamentary watch group.
Regardless, the bill submitted to
parliament on March 19 by U Zaw
Myint Pe, head of a proportional
representation commission, is likely
to be tabled for discussion in the
coming weeks.
U Win Naing Shein, another
member of the upper house bill
committee, said it was wrong to rule
out proportional voting in this years
election.
Lets see how the process moves
forward when the session resumes
[on May 11]. If we can finish all the
procedures in parliament in May, I
think it is still possible to adopt the
voting system, said the USDP member, who represents Bago Region.
Anyway, he said, the UEC deadline will have no effect.
If parliament decides to adopt
the system, the UEC have no other
option [but to accept it].

6 News

THE MYANMAR TIMES MAY 6, 2015

FEATURE

Myanmar
tough for
mothers,
says NGO
report
FIONA MACGREGOR
fionamacgregor@hotmail.co.uk

Military members of parliament attend a Pyidaungsu Hluttaw session in Nay Pyi Taw on April 9. Photo: AFP

From barracks to ballot box,


military holds key to power
The role of military MPs has evolved over past four years but there are no indications they will exit parliament soon

NAN TIN
HTWE
nantin.htwe@gmail.com

THE Myanmar soldier, wearing his


crisp green uniform, rifles through a
box of T-shirts for a souvenir of his
time in the countrys fledgling legislature a deeply controversial position
on the cusp of key elections.
With a quarter of parliamentary
seats and an effective veto on opposition leader Daw Aung San Suu Kyis
presidential hopes, unelected military
men have a major role in the delicate
political transition, regardless of the
result of landmark polls later this year.
Daw Aung San Suu Kyi has said reforms are stalling and refuses to rule
out a boycott of the election, expected
in early November this year, as she
fights to change the junta-era constitution which bars her from the top job.
While the army is reluctant to further relinquish its political leverage,
observers say the hundreds of soldiers
who have sat in parliament have been
exposed to lively debate and compromise like never before.
It is interesting, the soldier, asking not to be named, said of his experience in the legislature.
We serve here as a duty, appointed
by the Tatmadaw, he said, after finally
selecting a T-shirt bearing a picture
of the massive parliament building in
Nay Pyi Taw.
Military might
In 2011 Myanmars military leaders
dramatically stepped aside in favour
of a quasi-civilian government, which
has ushered in sweeping reforms

despite remaining dominated by retired generals.


Those changes including the release of political prisoners, untethering of the press and opening-up of the
economy stunned the international
community and lured in hordes of foreign investors.
An International Crisis Group report released in late April said the
military initiated the transition and
continues to back it.
But it said that while the army chief
has pledged to ensure credible elections, its expectations are unclear.
The army also retains significant powers, including control of key security
ministries.
Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, whose National League for Democracy is expected to sweep the elections, is ineligible
for the presidency because the armydrafted constitution excludes those
with foreign children from top office.
Her two sons are British, as was her
late husband.
The military has vowed to prevent
major constitutional amendments.
It has the last say on charter changes because of rules that require more
than a three-quarters majority for significant amendments.
And on these issues they will vote
together.
When it comes to some things,
some sections, we are organised, military MP Brigadier General Htay Naing
said in a rare interview at parliament
recently.
But he said army MPs were entitled
to vote freely on other matters.
The military contingent of MPs
selected by Commander-in-Chief
Senior General Min Aung Hlaing and
shuffled periodically had evolved
over the years, he added.
In the past, there were many

Brigadier General Htay Naing, a military


member of parliament, speaks during
an interview at parliament. Photo: AFP

young people. They didnt understand


much. Now we have more seniors and
so they are more knowledgeable, he
said.
The appointment of higher-ranking officers to parliament in 2012 also
suggests an evolution in the understanding of their role, according to
Renaud Egreteau, a visiting fellow at
the Institute for Southeast Asian Studies in Singapore who has conducted
research on Myanmars parliament.
While they have proved increasingly engaged in discussions, especially in closed-door parliamentary
committees, he said they remained
relatively quiescent backbenchers
and were likely to stay as such until
after the election.
But he said their behaviour may
change if the preserves of the military
parliamentary bloc become increasingly challenged by fellow elected representatives or a new government.

Back to the barracks?


Daw Aung San Suu Kyi has a complex
relationship with an army that kept her
under house arrest for over 15 years.
Her father, Bogyoke Aung San, is
credited with founding the countrys
modern military, and in 2013 the Nobel peace laureate admitted she was
fond of the army despite her detention, and despite a litany of allegations
of rights abuses, particularly in Myanmars ethnic conflicts.
As she is the daughter of General
Aung San, there is no reason not to
respect her personally. But the action
and attitude of her and her party are
sometimes different from ours, Brig
Gen Htay Naing said.
Daw Aung San Suu Kyi has said that
allowing soldiers to remain indefinitely
in parliament is not democracy, but is
advocating a gradual reduction in the
proportion of army MPs a pragmatic
position in a country and region blighted by military coups.
Even the army admits it will one day
need to retreat to the barracks.
There will be a time when we are
not needed here anymore, said Brig
Gen Htay Naing, adding however that
the countrys decades of ethnic conflict,
still raging in some areas, justified the
militarys continued presence in politics.
With Daw Aung San Suu Kyi barred
from the presidency, observers say the
tussle for the top job may still end up
between two ex-generals the current
president, U Thein Sein, and the lower
house speaker, Thura U Shwe Mann
while Senior General Min Aung Hlaing is also thought to harbour political
aspirations.
And with no timetable for a transfer
to full civilian control, the men in green
seem set to be a feature of Myanmars
political landscape for the foreseeable
future. AFP

MYANMAR is one of the worst


places in the world in which
to be a mother, according to
a new report by Save the Children, which ranked the country 157th out of 179.
Released on Monday, Save
the Childrens 16th annual
Mothers Index rates motherhood conditions around the
world based on five indicators
related to maternal health, education, income levels and the
status of women.
Myanmar has a one-in-250
lifetime risk of maternal death,
and under-five mortality rate
of 52.3 per thousand live
births. That compares with
one-in-7900 and 2.8 deaths per
thousand in Norway, which
topped the list as the best
place in which to be a mother.
Compared with other ASEAN nations ranked on the
annual index, Myanmar also
scored significantly lower.
Thailand, which was ranked
number 72, has a one-in-1400
lifetime risk of maternal death
and an under-five mortality
rate of 13.2 per thousand live
births, while Cambodia the
lowest-ranked ASEAN country
after Myanmar had rates of
one-in-150 and 39.7 per thousand respectively.
The rankings also reflected
Myanmars gross national income, low expected number of
years of formal schooling, at
8.7 years, and extremely low
number of female politicians,
with just 4.3 percent of seats in
the national parliament being
held by women.
Papua New Guinea was the
only Asian nation to appear
below Myanmar in the list,
which named sub-Saharan African countries as the 10 worst
places to be a mother.
Somalia took last place, just
below the Democratic Republic of Congo and the Central
African Republic.
Save the Children CEO
Carolyn Miles said the data
confirmed that a countrys economic wealth is not the sole
factor leading to happy and
healthy mothers.
In the case of Norway, they
do have wealth, but they also
invest that wealth in things
like mothers and children, as
a very high priority, Ms Miles
said.
Save the Children also reported that mothers are having a tougher time in the
worlds expanding cities, with
survival gaps between rich and
poor widening.
Cities in Bangladesh, Cambodia, Ghana, India, Kenya,
Madagascar, Nigeria, Peru,
Rwanda, Vietnam and Zimbabwe have the highest gap for
child survival, with poor children three to five times more
likely to die than their affluent
peers.
According to the Save the
Children Myanmar website,
the organisation initiated activities in Myanmar in 1995,
and signed its first memorandum of understanding with
the Ministry of Health in 2001.

News 7

www.mmtimes.com

Views

Media freedom and the Tatmadaw

AY 3 was World Press


Freedom Day. To mark
the occasion, the Ministry of Information
and the United Nations
Educational, Scientific and Cultural
Organization held an event together
in Yangon. I dont know if it was a
coincidence, but the same day the
Tatmadaws newly formed True News
Information Team sent a letter to the
Myanmar Press Council (Interim).
The letter, dated May 3, was sent
by the Public Relations and Psychological Warfare department. It read:
Subject: Do not publish statements of the Kokang insurgent group
(MNDAA) in the media.
1. We have known that the
Myanmar National Democratic Alliance Army (MNDAA), the Kokang
insurgent group, is attending the
meeting of ethnic armed group leaders in Panghsang township, eastern
Shan State.
2. As the state has announced
that the Kokang insurgent group
(MNDAA) is an unlawful association, the press and media are now
informed to absolutely not broadcast
and publish statements made [by
the MNDAA] at the meeting held in
Panghsang. If they do, action will be
taken according to the current laws.
The letter was signed by an officer
on behalf of the chairm of the Tatmadaws True News Information Team.
The letter clearly states that information from the Kokang army must
not be reported. It makes no mention
of reporting on the announcements of
other armed ethnic groups.
However, there are some elements
of the letter that are not clear enough
and could create fear and anxieties
among local journalists reporting on
the Kokang conflict, as well as more
general news about ethnic armed
groups and the peace process.
For instance, it has been said that
the Kokang conflict will be discussed
at the meeting of ethnic armed group
leaders. Can that be reported? A
statement may also be released of the
conflict. It will not be released by the
Kokang group individually but can
that statement be reported? The next
thing is that the Kokang may release
a statement. This could be published
by international news agencies. Can
these news agency reports then be
cited as a source? The Kokang statement would not be published directly.
The Tatmadaw has consistently

Soldiers ride on tanks during a ceremony to mark Armed Forces Day in Nay Pyi Taw on March 27. Photo: AFP

focused attention on limiting press


freedom since the start of the Kokang
conflict, and limiting the ability of
journalists to acquire information and
report on the fighting. When martial
law was announced in the Kokang
region, the government said offences
under media laws were among those
for which the death sentence can be
handed down.
As a result, no one dares to take
the risk to gather information on

Keeping people
in the dark was a
tactic employed by
the dictators in the
former government.
it is unsuitable
for the reforming
Tatmadaw to
continue to do this.

SITHU AUNG
MYINT

newsroom@mmtimes.com

the fighting first hand. However,


journalists have reported news in
line with media ethics based on
both Tatmadaw announcements and
interviews with the Kokang.
The threat of action has always
been present, however. When Lieutenant General Myat Tun Oo was asked
at a press conference in February
whether interviewing the Kokang rebels broke the law, he said there were
laws that could be used to prosecute
those who conduct such interviews.
This weeks letter may have been
prompted by a recent dispute over a
media report on the fighting for hill
2202 in the Kokang region on April
23 and 24. The Eleven Media Group

reported the news, referring to both


the announcements of Tatmadaw and
other news sources. The report also
included unconfirmed information
that the Tatmadaw had suffered many
casualties and injuries. After the story
was published, the Tatmadaw True
News Information Team objected
that Eleven had breached journalism
ethics by using unverified sources and
had damaged the Tatmadaws dignity.
Another important section of the
May 3 letter is the reference to both
print and broadcast media. Last year,
the Tatmadaw charged five journalists from Unity with breaking the
State Secrets Act. The court sentenced
them to 10 years imprisonment,
which was reduced by three years
on appeal. Since then, private papers
have been reluctant to publish news
about the Tatmadaw. This is somewhat understandable given that the
current judiciary almost always finds
defendants guilty if the Tatmadaw
is the one laying the charges. They
know what the likely result of a criminal case will be.
Its important to note Myanmars
media environment was much different before 2011. Press freedom has

been given, but today the government


still controls TV and radio broadcasting. The new government has been
praised by international communities for relaxing restrictions on print
media. Another important reform in
Myanmar is that of its administrative
system. The country is now governed
through a power-sharing system
between the government, the hluttaw, the judiciary and the Tatmadaw.
Governmental organisations, including
the Tatmadaw, are seeking to make
reforms in line with this new political
system.
The Tatmadaw has itself made a
lot of positive reforms. Taking action
against recruiting child soldiers,
stopping the use of forced labour,
reducing human rights violations,
requesting its budget transparently in
the hluttaw and participating in the
peacemaking process these are all
steps forward.
On press freedom, Myanmar is trying to be flexible. The government has
shown understanding and patience.
Journalists are allowed to cover
stories about clashes with ethnic
armed groups, including the Kachin
Independence Army, and to criticise
the Tatmadaw. The only time it has
not been tolerant toward the media
is in regard to the recent clashes with
the Kokang.
The conflict with the Kokang is a
civil war. The Tatmadaw is a part of
the country. From the highest to the
lowest ranks, its members are born of
the people. Thats why everyone in the
country has the rights to know how
the Tatmadaw is doing its duty, in
whichever region and under whatever
circumstances. The domestic media
have been doing their duty, too, by letting the people know what is happening in which place. Keeping people in
the dark was a tactic employed by the
dictators in the former government.
It is unsuitable for the reforming
Tatmadaw to continue to do this.
If the Tatmadaw is preventing
press freedom, its good image will
be impacted at home and abroad.
Similarly, it will harm the image of
Myanmars burgeoning press freedom. Thats why the statement from
the Tatmadaw True News Information
Team should be made much clearer.
But the Tatmadaw should also review
if the statement benefits itself, as well
as the people and the country as a
whole. Translation by Kyawt Darly
Lin and Thiri Min Htun

8 THE MYANMAR TIMES MAY 6, 2015

Business
Low-cost
housing
winners
out of luck
KO KO AUNG
pmkokoaung@gmail.com
HTIN LIN AUNG
htynlynnaung@gmail.com
OVER 100 people may be out of
luck after winning rights to purchase low-cost housing from Shwe
Lin Ban project in Yangons Hlaing
Tharyar township, according to Daw
Thida Than, a staff officer at the Department of Human Settlement and
Housing Development.
A total of 768 different units at Shwe
Lin Ban were meted out to applicants
who had to first fill out application
forms and then won a lucky draw for
rights to purchase a unit. Daw Thida
Than said not all of the winners have
yet shown up to register their claims,
despite being notified repeatedly.
Out of the [768] winners, 135
people have yet to register, she said.
Weve called them three times. We
will reject their names if they dont
register their purchase of the apartments within the allotted time.
A raft of low-cost projects has been
developed to assist those who are being priced out of the increasingly expensive market, with government bodies such as Yangon City Development
Committee planning several developments, usually on the citys outskirts.
Financing the purchase of houses
and also low-cost housing has been a
significant obstacle to increased house
ownership.
Government-backed entities have
worked to develop affordable financing options for potential buyers, with
Construction and Housing Development Bank (CHDB) to offer mortgages
to those who won the draw to buy
units at Shwe Lin Ban.
The bank has recently extended
its loan term to eight years for buyers
at the housing project, as its previous
four-year loans had not been enough
to support possible home buyers, according to CHDB managing director U
Win Zaw.
Of course our bank lengthened the
term. After stretching it out, more people are interested and the number of
borrowers increased, he said.
Daw Kay Khine has applied for a
mortgage to purchase a unit in the
Shwe Lin Ban project in Hlaing Tharyar township. She said the longer loan
term makes it much more financially
feasible for her to purchase a unit.
Those wanting to make a purchase
with a CHDB loan must first open
an account with the bank. The seller,
buyer and bank then have to sign a
contract.
Generally, CHDB requires a down
payment of 30 percent of a low-cost
apartment before providing the remaining 70pc as a loan. Extending the
term aims to make repayments less of
a burden for buyers.
It had about 100 borrowers for
units at Shwe Lin Ban before the
change, but now has over 200, he said.
CHDB received its licence to begin
operating in July 2013. Set up by the
Ministry of Construction, it aims to
give long-term loans for house buyers.
CHDB officials have said they aim
to extend their offerings with other
low-cost housing projects in Yangon.
Translation by Thiri Min Htun

Border rice trade to survive bilateral


move to legalise trade with China
HTIN LIN AUNG
htynlynnaung@gmail.com
THE launch of a legal rice trade
between Myanmar and China will
not immediately harm unofficial
border trade, according to Myanmar Rice Federation (MRF) general
secretary U Ye Min Aung.
The overland border trade in
rice has grown significantly over
the past few years, from being negligible five years ago to currently
making up about two-thirds of total exports. While legal from Myanmars position, the trade was not
sanctioned by Beijing due to the
lack of a bilateral agreement.
After a deal was struck last year,
Myanmar traders are hopeful to
begin the first formal exports to
China as soon as this month. Yet
while a legal avenue for trade is
now opening, informal exports will
also continue for the time being,
according to U Ye Min Aung.
If China wanted to take action
against the border trade, it would
have already started, he said. But
we cant predict what will happen,
which is why we are trying to go on
with legal exports only.
There have been instances of
China shutting the border to informal rice imports, including one
such move in September last year,
which temporarily brought trade to
a standstill.
U Lu Maw Myint Maung, a largescale rice exporter and associate
secretary of MRFs trade section,

Farmers harvest rice. Myanmars rice exports have been growing, largely due to interest from China. Photo: AFP

said that Chinese-imposed restrictions on the border trade market


would negatively impact trade volume but that they probably will
not come in the short term.
It seems theyre not thinking about restricting the border

market due to high domestic demands, he said.


Rice exports to China reached
752,000 tonnes in 2012-13 fiscal
year, according to a report last year
by the World Bank.
A number of other regional rice

exporters also been given the official green light to ship rice to China this year using a quota system.
The Myanmar Rice Federation is
actively seeking higher quotas and
targeting a cap of 300,000 tonnes
of rice for years following.

No wine imports yet, months


after a legal route announced
AYE THIDAR
KYAW
ayethidarkyaw@gmail.com

WINE suppliers have yet to apply


for licences for legal imports due
to difficulties in the process, according to industry sources.
Imports of wine have officially been legal since mid-March,
though no company has yet applied or paid the required import
taxes to the Ministry of Commerce
or the Companies Circle Tax office,
said ministry director U Tin Ye
Win.
Past wine imports appearing
on the shelves have often been
brought in through loopholes for
hotels and duty-free imports. The
government cracked down on this
practice in late 2013, though the
promised follow-up rules legalising imports only arrived in March.
Although no company has yet
received a legal wine import licence, at least five companies are
working their way through applications, with the aims of distributing products to market in late June
or July, according to the Myanmar

Retailers Association (MRA) sources.


Other officials with the association welcomed the creation of rules
allowing legal alcohol import,
though note some increased barriers have also been put in place.
I am glad for the permission. It
is in keeping with a market economy, and we hope to open more to
other liquor or beer imports in the
future, said MRA deputy chair and
spokesperson U Myo Min Aung.
But restrictions on the type of licence even if the market is open
creates nonsense and causes bribery. The government should place
restrictions on people who do not
follow their policy.
A government move to increase
the costs with selling and producing liquor has drawn particularly
strong criticism.
The Ministry of Home Affairs
raised the annual fees for a licence
to sell alcohol for this fiscal year,
tripling the cost of a distribution
licence from K500,000 to K1.5 million this year, said U Aung Naing
Myint, owner of Shwe Moe company and executive member of MRA.
Shwe Moe is trying to apply for an
import licence.
The ministry has also made it
more difficult to obtain liquor li-

cences from it directly, which has


created a secondary market for
them. Prices have been increasing,
with an individual licence now going for K5 to K7 million, a significant increase on the K1.5 million
they cost three years ago.
These problems are causing
us delays. It is not only the Home
Affairs licences; we also have other problems. We have to set up a
company to import, U Aung Naing
Myint said.
The Ministry of Commerce, separately from the Ministry of Home
Affairs, is to provide liquor import
licences.
Most liquor shops currently sell
imported alcohol without legal
permission, meaning shops need

We hope to open
more to other
liquor or beer
imports in the
future.
U Myo Min Aung
Myanmar Retailers Federation

to change their theme if they want


to legally take part in the business.
Legal imports under the new
scheme must also travel by air or
sea, which may put them at a disadvantage to illegal imports entering
from Thailand and China which
are often of the same make and
quality. U Aung Naing Myint said
legal imports by sea or air could be
double the price of alcohol brought
in overland across the border.
The government cannot guarantee they can defend against illegal goods. It is very important
to consider this, and we need to
discuss with our sources [of foreign imports] that they shouldnt
import by land.
Director U Tin Ye Win said
importers must have accurate
numbers and distribution points
to assist the Internal Revenue Department with its tax collecting.
Since we can expect easy illicit
imports, I think nobody has applied for a licence yet because of
the requirements, he said.
U Tin Ye Win said the situation
was similar to when the ban was
removed on motorbike imports
and still over half of imports were
illegal.
We will not let a situation like
this happen again.

BUSINESS EDITOR: Jeremy Mullins | jeremymullins7@gmail.com

Exchange Rates (May 5 close)


Currency
Euro
Malaysia Ringitt
Singapore Dollar
Thai Baht
US Dollar

Buying
K1185
K300
K805
K33
K1087

Selling
K1215
K315
K825
K35
K1093

KFCs first location will be on Bogyoke Aung San Road


JEREMY MULLINS
jeremymullins7@gmail.com
KFC announced the location of its
debut Myanmar outlet yesterday, as
it gets closer to becoming the first
major American fast-food chain to
open in the country.
Its restaurant on Yangons Bogyoke Aung San Road, opposite Bogyoke Market and FMI Center, will
be the first to sell its signature fried
chicken. No opening date has yet
been announced for the location.
Our hope is for KFC to become
a welcome respite from the hustle
and bustle of downtown and a place
where people can connect and
bond, said JR Ching, Yoma Strategic head of business development,
in a press release yesterday.
KFC announced an agreement in
October 2014 with Singapore-listed,
Myanmar-focused Yoma Strategic
Holdings to bring the restaurant
chain to Myanmar.
Yoma Strategic plans to open
several more locations in Yangon
before the end of the year.
Mr Ching previously told The
Myanmar Times it is also considering further expansion in the country at a later date.
He also said KFC will be an

aspirational product, targeting


the growing middle class, when it
launches locally. KFC is particularly well-known for the 11 herbs and
spices used in its chicken recipe.
KFC will face several competitors in the local market, including South Korean chain Lotteria,
which opened its first Yangon outlet in 2013 and has also expanded
to Mandalay.
KFC claims to be one of the
worlds largest restaurant chains,
with US$23 billion in global sales
and more than 19,400 restaurants
in 120 countries.

The future site of KFC on


Bogyoke Aung San Road.
Photo: Aung Htay Hlaing

An artists impression shows what the


KFC location will look like. Photo: Supplied

Roc Oil backs out of last unsigned block


Its two former partners are now re-negotiating the Production Sharing Contract with government authorities that will govern block M-7

AUNG
SHIN
koshumgtha@gmail.com

AUSTRALIAS Roc Oil has withdrawn


from the group which won the rights
to shallow-water block M-7 last year,
leaving its partners to discuss the
blocks future, according to government officials.
Roc Oil and its partners Tap Oil
and Smart E&P won the rights to the
block in a 2014 bidding round for a
total of 20 offshore blocks. Production Sharing Contracts, which govern
resource exploration and extraction,
have now been inked by the likes of
Shell, Chevron and Total for the other
19 blocks, with only M-7 remaining to
be finalised.
Roc Oil has pulled out of the bidding group. We are now restructuring
procedures to move forward with the
Production Sharing Contract, said a
Ministry of Energy official, who declined to be named as he is not allowed to speak to the media.
The official said Rocs decision to
pull out may be related to its purchase by a subsidiary of China-based
Fosun International earlier this year,
in a deal that saw Roc Oil de-listed
from the Australian stock exchange.
De-listing means its owners dont
want to make new investments, said
the official. He added the Production
Sharing Contract will now be signed
with Tap Oil and its local partner.
Neither Tap Oil or Roc Oil had returned request for comment by yesterday, though Tap Oils March 2015
quarterly report, released April 30,
does confirm the move.
In April, Roc Oil advised the

[Ministry of Energy] and the joint


venture that it has withdrawn from
the bidding group. The remaining
joint venture participants, Tap and
Smart E&P International Ltd, its local joint venture participant, are in
discussions with the [Ministry of
Energy] regarding the award of the
[Production Sharing Contract], it
said.
Service company Smart E&P is
one of Myanmars better-known oil
and gas companies.
Smart chair U Kyaw Kyaw Hlaing
said he had been aware for some time
that the ownership of Roc Oil had
changed hands.

19

Offshore platforms like this one


are years or decades away for the
2014 winners of 20 offshore blocks
though the Production Sharing
Contracts are a necessary step.
Photo: AFP

Nay Pyi Taw

Thailand
Yangon

M-07

Yadana
Zawtika

Yetagun

Number of offshore blocks for which


Production Sharing Contracts have been
signed though there is one more to go

We knew the Chinese company


bought Roc Oil. But it has only been
a month since we were informed by
Roc that it is withdrawing from our
group, he said.
Tap Oil has agreed to take over
rights to block M-7 and to finalise production sharing terms and conditions
with Myanmar authorities.
We have presented our partnership with Tap Oil for M-7 to Myanma
Oil and Gas Enterprise, he said. Now
we are waiting for their response to
move on with signing the Production
Sharing Contract.
Government officials had initially

hoped to have all 20 Production Sharing Contracts finalised by last month,


though it will likely be June at the earliest before the government gives the
adjusted partnership the official green
light.
The shallow-water M-7 block is in
the Mottama basin, covering some
13,000 square kilometres (5019 square
miles). It lies near three of Myanmars
four offshore sites that are in production, including Yadana and Zawtika.
The Myanmar Investment Commission issued permission in March to
Roc Oil, Tap and Smart E&P to invest
in M-7.

10 International Business

THE MYANMAR TIMES MAY 6, 2015

NEW YORK

McDonalds announces plan to


turn around flagging fortunes
AMERICAN fast-food icon McDonalds, seeking to return the shine to its
golden arches, unveiled a turnaround
plan late on May 4 to combat sagging
sales and shifting consumer tastes.
The global giant, which has languished amid rising concerns about
obesity and food quality, will sell off
more company-owned restaurants to
franchisees, restructure its international operations and cut costs.
The chain is also testing plans to
let customers customise dishes and
an experiment with all-day breakfast
in the key US market.
The reality is our recent performance has been poor, chief executive
Steve Easterbrook admitted.
This is a global turnaround. We
have to modernise our approach and
run the system differently.
The creators of the famed Big
Mac said the chain would likely
tweak core menu items, citing a
March announcement to limit chicken raised with antibiotics, which Mr
Easterbrook said had been popular
with customers.
The company vowed to become
more transparent in response to concerns about food quality.
There are perceptions and there
are misperceptions out there, Mr
Easterbrook told an analyst conference call. Consumers tastes are
changing ... and therefore weve got to
be seen to be moving with them.
The measures unveiled May
4 were billed as the first step in a
turnaround.
In January, McDonalds announced it was installing Mr Easterbrook as chief executive, replacing
Donald Thompson, who was unable
to reverse a trend of sliding sales.
With 36,000 outlets in over 100
countries, the chain has been under
pressure from falling customer traffic,
with sales falling 2.4 percent in 2014
to $27.4 billion.
It faces rising competition, not
only from traditional rivals like Wendys and Subway, but from higher-end
chains like Chipotle, Panera Bread

A replica of Ray Krocs first McDonalds franchise in Des Plaines, Illinois. Photo: AFP

and Shake Shack, which went public


in January by positioning itself as a
burger chain with better-quality ingredients.
Easterbrook highlighted the need
to establish McDonalds as a modern,
progressive burger company.
He said he would prod employees throughout the system to push
little more quickly and a little more
accurately to improve the dining
experience.
We all need to step up our game
a bit, he said.
Among the bigger changes, the US
fast-food burger giant said its overseas markets will be organised by
their maturity within the McDonalds
system, rather than by region.
Its current structure splits markets outside its home US market into
Europe, Asia-Pacific, the Middle East
and Africa.
McDonalds international lead

segment will unite mature markets


such as Australia, Britain, Canada,
France and Germany, which operate
with similar economic and competitive dynamics.
The high-growth segment will be
those with higher expansion potential, including China, Italy, Switzerland, Russia and South Korea.
Remaining regions will go into the
foundational markets unit.
The new system will enhance
communication between McDonalds
officials in Australia and markets like
Britain, with which it has more in
common than a closer regional market, such as China.
In addition, McDonalds said the
company would franchise 3500 restaurants by the end of 2018, lifting the
share of franchised units those not
owned by the company from 81 percent to 90pc worldwide.
Mr Easterbrook said he became

a strong believer in franchising after


growing the model in Britain from
35pc to 65pc franchised restaurants
within five years.
That was just a really strong contributor to driving energy in the ownership and accountability, he said.
Nevertheless, Larry Light, a former McDonalds chief marketing officer, criticised the plan as vague.
Based on this presentation, Id
defy anyone to figure out what they
want the brand to be when it grows
up, Mr Light, now with marketing
firm Arcature, told CNBC.
Analysts from Morgan Stanley
said in a note that the plan makes
sense to us as the only real way to fix
the brand is to get more people to eat
their hamburgers more often.
Dow member McDonalds shares
dropped 1.0 percent to $96.85 in afternoon trade.
AFP

MUMBAI

Indian
merger
to create
retail
chain giant
INDIAN billionaire Sunil Mittals
Bharti Retail will merge with rival
Future Retail to create one of Indias
biggest chains with more than 570
stores across the country, the companies said.
Two companies will be formed
under the structure of the deal,
which was approved by the boards
of Bharti and Future, in a bid to
take advantage of Indias fast-growing retailing sector, they said in a
statement.
Retail is emerging as the next
big growth engine for India and we
will be well-positioned to be a major player in this growth story, said
Rajan Bharti Mittal, vice chair of
Bharti Enterprises.
The merger is also expected to
significantly reduce interest costs
on debts of the existing firms, the
statement added.
India has a fast growing retail
sector thanks to an expanding middle class, with another major player
Reliance Retail controlled by one
of Indias wealthiest people Mukesh
Ambani selling everything from
vegetables to electronics.
Bharti Retail is a unit of Mittals Bharti Enterprises, which runs
212 Easy Day convenience stores
across India.
Future Retail has a combined
17 million square feet (1.6 million
square metres) of retail space across
supermarkets, apparel outlets and
electronics stores.
Under the structure of the deal, a
new entity called Future Retail will
hold the combined store operations,
comprising some 570 stores across
more than 200 cities.
Another new entity called Future
Enterprises will own the infrastructure, investments and assets of both
companies, the statement said.
AFP

BRUSSELS

SHANGHAI

Huge reduction in Greek growth

Chinese authorities
examine Siemens

THE EU yesterday sharply slashed its


growth outlook for Greece this year
due to its ongoing battle with its international creditors, dampening an
otherwise improved outlook for the
eurozone.
The Greek economy slumped severely in the first three months of the
year, the European Commission said
in its Spring forecasts, cutting its overall 2015 growth outlook for Greece to
0.5 percent, a huge reduction from its
earlier prediction of 2.5pc.
The sharp downturn in the state
of the Greece economy will heap even
more pressure on the radical leftist
government of premier Alexis Tsipras
to come to terms with its EU-IMF
creditors, who are demanding radical
reforms that Athens is so far refusing.
In light of the persistent uncertainty, a downward revision has been
unavoidable for Greece, Pierre Moscovici, the EUs Economic Affairs Commissioner, told a news conference.
The EU predicted a strong rebound of 2.5pc in 2016 for Greece but
stressed that all its predictions were
based on the assumption that Athens
would reach a deal with its creditors
when the extension of its current international bailout runs out at the end
of June.

Greeces debt, already the highest


in the eurozone, would meanwhile
soar to 180.2pc of annual economic
output this year, before falling slightly
to 173.5pc in 2016, the EU said.
For the rest of the eurozone, cheaper oil and a weak euro led the EU executive to predict that the currency bloc
would grow 1.5pc in 2015, better than
the 1.3pc predicted in February.
The European economy is enjoying its brightest spring in several
years, with the upturn supported by
both external factors and policy measures that are beginning to bear fruit,
said Mr Moscovici, a former French

In light of
the persistent
uncertainty,
a downward
revision has been
unavoidable.
Pierre Moscovici
EU official

finance minister.
But more needs to be done to ensure this recovery is more than a seasonal phenomenon.
The Commission forecast that
the currency bloc would avoid much
feared deflation this year, with consumer prices rising an albeit low 0.1pc
in 2015, and then gaining momentum
to 1.5pc in 2016.
Deflation can be dangerous, risking to trigger a spiral of ever weaker
demand, slowing the economy and
pushing up unemployment.
The inflation data helps confirm
that an unprecedented bout of monetary stimulus known as quantitative easing by the European Central
Bank was taking effect despite the objections of powerful Germany.
Greeces Tsipras government came
to power in late January and has been
at loggerheads with the EU and IMF
ever since, holding up bailout cash
and putting its economy on the brink
of collapse.
Most worryingly, the EU predicted
that the Greek public deficit would
stand at 2.1pc this year, instead of a
surplus.
Running a budget surplus is the
key condition from the EU and IMF
for the Greek bailout. AFP

GERMAN industrial giant Siemens


confirmed that Chinese regulators
are looking into the business model of its healthcare unit, but denied it
was a corruption investigation.
Chinas healthcare sector is widely considered to be riddled with
graft, partly the result of doctors
low salaries and an opaque tendering system for drugs.
Media reports said the State Administration for Industry & Commerce (SAIC) and other regulators
last year started initial inquiries
into the medical device businesses
of Siemens, Dutch firm Philips and
General Electric of the United States
on suspicion of bribing hospitals to
gain sales.
Siemens said the SAIC was only
examining its business model in
China.
The fact is, a branch of [the] Administration of Industry and Commerce in Shanghai is looking into
Siemens Healthcares Laboratory
Diagnostics marketing and business
model, which is common worldwide
in the industry, Siemens said in a
statement.

Contrary to the recent media


reports, the probe is neither corruption-related nor related to any personal benefits to individuals, it said
in the statement late on May 4.
It is the latest reported example
of overseas firms being targeted
by Chinese authorities, who have
launched wide-ranging probes in
sectors ranging from autos to baby
milk on issues from safety to corruption to price-fixing.
The SAIC also specifically denied
a bribery probe into the German
firm, saying in a statement it has not
opened a commercial bribery investigation into the Siemens company.
It did not mention any other companies by name.
In 2014 a Chinese court found
British drugmaker GSK had used
bribery to boost sales and took kickbacks from travel agencies to organise conferences that never took
place, according to previous reports
by state media.
GSK was fined 3.0 billion yuan
(US$480 million) last September after a nearly year-long bribery probe.
AFP

12 THE MYANMAR TIMES MAY 6, 2015

13

World

WORLD EDITOR: Fiona MacGregor

Indonesia bans
maids from working
in Middle East

Thai King
makes rare
public outing

WORLD 14

WORLD 14

KATHMANDU

NANTERRE

Founder Le Pen suspended from


National Front after row with daughter
FRANCES far-right National Front
(FN) has suspended founder JeanMarie Le Pen over a string of controversial remarks and amid a deepening
feud with his daughter Marine, who
now leads the party.
A disciplinary meeting of the party
executive was called after the 86-yearold repeated comments stating that
the Nazi gas chambers were merely a
detail of history and said he wanted
to defend the white world.
A special meeting of FN members
will be called within three months to
decide whether to strip him of the title
of honorary president, the party said
in a statement.
A furious Mr Le Pen described his
suspension as a criminal act and
said he wanted to disown his daughter, ordering her to give up her name.
He warned party officials should
expect him to use any means to fight
the decision.
The far-right patriarch showed
up on May 4 for a meeting at the FN
headquarters in Nanterre, west of
Paris, to discuss upcoming regional
elections.
But he refused to stay for the disciplinary hearing that was called by his
daughter, who took over the leadership in 2011.
Mr Le Pen said the hearing was
detrimental to my dignity.
He told reporters there was no
question of his retirement, saying
they will have to kill me to silence

him.
On May 3, Marine Le Pen said that
her father no longer spoke for the anti-immigration party, which opposes
Frances membership of the European
Union.
Jean-Marie Le Pen should no
longer be able to talk in the name of
the National Front. His comments are
against the fixed [party] line, she told
French radio.
Marine Le Pen has been actively
trying to distance the party from its
racist and anti-Semitic image as she
plans her bid for the next French presidential election in 2017.
The relationship between her and
her father has been particularly rocky
in recent months.
Six months ago, Ms Le Pen stormed
out of her fathers house after his Doberman dog savaged her Bengal cat to
death.
Since his recent slew of controversial interviews, the remaining ties appear to have snapped.
The elder Le Pen was conspicuously dropped from a line-up of National
Front leaders on stage during the partys traditional May 1 rally in Paris.
But determined to upstage his
daughter, he nevertheless strode uninvited onto the podium to take the ovation of the crowd.
I think that was a malicious act. I
think it was an act of contempt toward
me, Ms Le Pen said on May 3.
I get the feeling that he cant stand

that the National Front continues to


exist when he no longer heads it.
In late April, French prosecutors
said they would examine allegations
that the FN founder hid 2.2 million
euros (US$2.4 million) in a secret account in Switzerland.
Jean-Marie Le Pen has also been
under investigation since 2013 over a
1.1-million-euro discrepancy between
his 2004 and 2009 asset declarations.
A separate probe also under way
focuses on FN campaign financing
since Ms Le Pens takeover in 2011,
with five people and the events company Riwal already charged. The party
has also been referred to the EUs antifraud agency.
The spat between father and
daughter broke out last month after
Mr Le Pen repeated earlier comments
about the Nazi gas chambers and
praised Frances World War II leader
Philippe Petain, who collaborated
with the Nazis.
His daughter called the comments
political suicide and said she would
not support her fathers bid for the regional polls.
It was announced that his
25-year-old granddaughter Marion
Marechal Le Pen, who is already a
member of parliament, would stand
in his place.
Under Marine Le Pen, the FN has
enjoyed a series of election successes,
notably coming first in last years European elections. AFP

BOSTON

Emotional scenes as Boston bombers


relatives break down in court
DZHOKHAR Tsarnaev, the Boston
bomber, showed emotion in court for
the first time on May 4, wiping his
eyes as a distraught aunt was removed
from the courtroom, too overcome to
testify.
A jury is mulling whether Ms Tsarnaev, who was found guilty last month
of all counts related to the April 15,
2013, attack on the Boston Marathon
that killed three people and wounded
264 more, should be sentenced to
death or life in prison without parole.
Last week, his defence team began
presenting evidence in a bid to save
his life, and had arranged for his aunt,
64-year-old Patimat Suleimanova, to
come from Russia to testify.
But the woman, her voice choked
with sobs, was only able to tell the
court her name, age and where she
was from before she had to step down
and was escorted from the courtroom.
Mr Tsarnaev, a 21-year-old US citizen of Chechen descent, took a tissue
and appeared to quickly wipe away
tears.
Testimony from four other female
members of Mr Tsarnaevs family who
travelled to the United States about 10
days ago and are being housed at an
undisclosed location, dominated the
May 4 proceedings.
Two of his cousins born in Dagestan in southern Russia had earlier
taken the stand, with one describing
Mr Tsarnaev as a kind-hearted young
boy who cried while watching the Disney animated film The Lion King.
He was very kind, very warm. His
kindness made everybody kind, said

Dzhokhar Tsarnaev appears in a court


handout photo issued on March 23.
Photo:AFP

Raisat Suleimanova, a 35-year-old


nurse who now lives near Moscow.
Her testimony was translated from
Russian into English by an interpreter
for the court.
She described Mr Tsarnaevs somewhat-nomadic childhood. His parents moved often, from Kyrgyzstan to
Chechnya to Dagestan.
Mr Tsarnaev and his brother Tamerlan, who was shot dead by police in the days after the marathon
bombings as the pair attempted to
evade capture, virtually lived out of
their suitcases, changing schools and
friends often.
She also offered a glimpse into the
life of their mother, Zubeidat Tsarnaeva, who loved fashion and jewellery before she moved to the United
States. Jurors were shown photos of
the woman, in a fur coat or in formfitting clothes and sunglasses.

But in 2010, when Ms Suleimanova


saw her again, Ms Zubeidat was wearing the hijab.
It was a shock, knowing the kind
of person she used to be, Ms Suleimanova testified, noting that the family had been kind of removed from
their Islamic faith.
Ms Suleimanovas sister Naida also
testified, saying of Mr Tsarnaev, He
was very cute, very nice, very kind. He
always had a smile on his face.
Mr Tsarnaev loved his older brother, Naida told the court.
There is a custom in our family, to
always listen to your older sibling ...
and follow his example.
Mr Tsarnaevs lawyers have sought
throughout the trial to portray
26-year-old Tamerlan Tsarnaev as the
mastermind of the attacks, alleging he
manipulated his frightened younger
brother.
Naida Suleimanova also expressed
her concerns about the sharp changes
in Ms Tsarnaevas appearance, saying
it was unusual for the women in their
family.
When confronted with Tamerlan
Tsarnaevs hatred of the treatment
of Muslims and his wish to see the
creation of an Islamic caliphate, she
replied, Our parents didnt teach us
those things.
Two other of Tsarnaevs aunts testified, as did two of his female high
school friends.
The defensc is expected to spend
around two weeks presenting witnesses testifying on their clients
behalf. AFP

IN PICTURES
Photo: AFP

Nepalese
villagers
shelter in
makeshifts
tents at
Laprak village
in Gorkha
district in
Nepal on
May 4. US
transport
aircraft
have started
shuttling
supplies
and rescue
teams to
remote areas
devastated by
an earthquake
that killed
more than
7500 people.
BEIRUT

Aleppo civilians suffering


horrendous war crimes

SYRIAN government forces are


committing crimes against humanity by indiscriminately bombing Aleppo, Amnesty International
said yesterday, as it also criticised
rebels for abuses including war
crimes.
In a new report, the rights
watchdog said relentless government aerial bombardment of Syrias
former economic powerhouse had
forced many residents to eke out
an existence underground.
It slammed the horrendous war
crimes and other abuses in the city
by government forces and armed
opposition groups on a daily basis.
Some of the governments actions in Aleppo amount to crimes
against humanity, Amnesty said.
The report was particularly critical of the governments use of socalled barrel bombs, crudely constructed weapons fashioned from
barrels and other vessels packed
with explosives.
Rights groups say the weapons
are especially destructive and kill
indiscriminately.
By relentlessly and deliberately
targeting civilians the Syrian government appears to have adopted
a callous policy of collective punishment against the civilian population of Aleppo, said Amnestys
Middle East and North Africa program director Philip Luther.
Despite documentation of the
governments use of the weapons by
rights groups and activists on the
ground, Syrian President Bashar
al-Assad has repeatedly denied that

his forces use barrel bombs.


Their use has created sheer terror and unbearable suffering, said
Amnesty.
On May 4, the Doctors Without
Borders (MSF) NGO said one of the
main hospitals in Aleppo had been
forced to suspend activities after recent attacks.
The hospital in rebel-held
Sakhur served some 400,000 people, the group said, renewing an

appeal for all sides to respect civilians, health facilities and medical
staff.
The Amnesty report also criticised rebels fighting in Aleppo,
which has been divided between
government control in the west and
opposition control in the east since
shortly mid-2012.
The report said rebels were committing war crimes by using imprecise weapons such as mortars

Syrians sit on the pavement near a building that was targeted in a reported barrel
bomb attack by Syrian government forces on the central al-Fardous rebel held
neighbourhood of the northern Syrian city of Aleppo, on April 29. Photo: AFP

and improvised rockets fitted with


gas canisters called hell cannons.
Rebels regularly fire missiles
into western Aleppo, with Amnesty saying some 600 civilians
had been killed in such attacks in
2014.
Regime barrel bomb attacks
killed more than 3000 civilians
across Aleppo province last year,
Amnesty said.
The report also documented
widespread torture, arbitrary detention and abduction by both government forces and armed opposition groups.
And it slammed the international community for failing to punish
abuses against civilians in Syria,
calling it a cold-hearted display
of indifference that encouraged
impunity.
Continued inaction is being
interpreted by perpetrators of war
crimes and crimes against humanity as a sign they can continue to
hold the civilians of Aleppo hostage
without fear of any retribution,
said Mr Luther.
The Syrian conflict should be
referred to the International Criminal Court so perpetrators can be
brought to justice, he said.
More than 220,000 people
have been killed in Syria since
March 2011, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights
monitor.
The countrys conflict began
with anti-government protests, but
spiralled into a bloody war after a
regime crackdown. AFP

Aid finally reaching quake survivors


NEPALESE authorities said yesterday that a vast army of emergency
workers was finally managing to
deliver aid to stranded survivors of
a massive earthquake as the death
toll from the disaster rose to 7557.
The government said that more
than 131,500 Nepalese military and
police personnel were now taking
part in the massive aid operation in
the vast Himalayan nation, aided by
more than 100 teams of foreign relief workers.
While the government has acknowledged being overwhelmed
by the April 25 disaster and there
have been complaints of delays to
the relief effort, the home ministry
indicated the situation was being
brought under control.
The situation in the country is
gradually becoming normal because
relief items have already reached

crucial, hard-hit areas, home ministry spokesperson Laxmi Prasad


Dhakal said.
Everybody is trying to return to
their normal lives and all our government machinery is working to
make sure that all relief is provided
for as long as people want and need.
We are trying our best.
His comments came after the National Emergency Operation Centre
said the total number of dead had
now reached 7557 while 14,536 were
injured in the 7.8-magnitude quake,
Nepals deadliest in more than 80
years.
The quake also killed more than
100 people in India and China.
The Nepalese government has
warned that the final toll is likely
to be much higher as rescue teams
are only now beginning to access
remote areas in the Himalayan

nation which were among the worst


affected.
US military helicopters began
reconnaissance trips on May 4 to
assess the damage in remote areas
and are expected to shortly begin
delivering relief supplies and airlift
casualties.
Mr Dhakal said relief operations
could carry on for weeks, if not
months.
There are so many people who
have been displaced and so many
people who have lost their homes
and are barely living under thin
sheets and tent structures, he said.
While the government has set
aside 20 billion rupees (around
US$196 million) for a reconstruction and rehabilitation fund, it is
also looking for large-scale financial
assistance from the international
community. AFP

GARLAND, TEXAS

FBI already investigated Texas


gunman over jihadist sympathies
ONE of the men shot dead by police when he and an accomplice attempted to storm an event hosted by
an anti-Muslim group in Texas was
investigated by the FBI over alleged
plans to wage holy war, court documents show.
Investigators were delving into
the backgrounds of the two suspected
Islamist gunmen. The pair, who were
roommates according to the Los Angeles Times, opened fire with assault
rifles on May 3 outside the controversial exhibit of cartoons depicting the
Prophet Mohammed.
A quick-acting Texas policeofficer
shot the two suspects before they
were able to enter the venue in Garland, a suburb of Dallas.
There was no confirmed claim of
responsibility for the failed attack,
but several US media identified the
shooters as 31-year-old Elton Simpson and 34-year-old Nadir Soofi.
The pair shared an apartment in
Phoenix, Arizona, the LA Times said,
and CNN broadcast footage of FBI
agents raiding the alleged address.
In court records seen by AFP,
Mr Simpson was sentenced to three
years probation in 2011 after FBI
agents presented a court with taped
conversations between him and an
informant discussing travelling to Somalia to join their brothers waging
holy war.
The prosecution was unable to
prove that Mr Simpson had committed a terror-related offense, but did
establish he had lied to investigators
when he denied having discussed going to Somalia.
Private terror watchdog SITE
said that at least one Twitter account linked to a known militant of
the Islamic State jihadist group has
claimed the attackers as sympathisers. But Mr Simpsons father said his
son had simply made a bad choice.
The White House said that President Barack Obama had been briefed
on the investigation, which Texas police said was ongoing.
There is no form of expression
that justifies an act of violence,
White House spokesperson Josh Earnest said.
Texas Governor Greg Abbott said

that investigators were looking into


the assailants ties to organised terrorist activity.
The American Freedom Defense
Initiative, a group listed by civil rights
watchdog the Southern Poverty Law
Center as an anti-Muslim hate group,
had organised the event, which drew
about 200 people.
At the event, attended by Dutch
far-right politician Geert Wilders and
AFDI co-founder Pamela Geller, supporters held an exhibition of entries
to a competition to draw caricatures
of the Prophet Mohammed.
Many Muslims find drawings of
the prophet to be disrespectful or
outright blasphemous, and such cartoons have been cited by Islamists
as motivation in several previous attacks.

We are Americans
and we believe in
America. What my
son did reflects very
badly on my family.
Dunston Simpson
Father of gunman

AFDI had offered a US$10,000


prize for the winner of the contest,
which was billed as a free speech
event.
Police said two men wearing body
armour and toting assault rifles drove
up to the conference, jumped out and
opened fire on an unarmed security
guard.
Garland police spokesperson Joe
Harn told reporters the guard was
shot in the ankle and that a traffic police officer in the vicinity responded, taking down the two armed
assailants.
Commentators were quick to draw
parallels to a January mass shooting
at the French satirical weekly Charlie
Hebdo in Paris that killed 12 people
and wounded 11 more.

There is absolutely no comparison, Jean-Baptiste Thoret, the magazines film critic who only avoided the
attack because he had been late for
work, told Charlie Rose on PBS, according to an advance transcript May
4.
You have a, as you said, a sort
of anti-Islamic movement [in Texas]
... The problem of Charlie Hebdo is
absolutely not the same, added Mr
Thoret, flanked by Gerard Biard,
chief editor of the magazine.
Mr Biard added, We dont organise contests. We just do our work. We
comment on the news. When Mohammed jumps out of the news, we
draw Mohammed.
But if he didnt, we didnt. We
dont. We fight racism. And we have
nothing to do with these people.
On Twitter, jihadist Abu Hussain
Al-Britani, whom SITE identified as
British IS fighter Junaid Hussain,
described the gunmen as two of our
brothers.
But Mr Simpsons father Dunston
told ABC News that his son, who he
said worked in a dentists office, had
made a bad choice.
We are Americans and we believe
in America, Dunston Simpson said.
What my son did reflects very badly
on my family.
Mr Wilders told AFP in an e-mail
that he was concerned he may have
been targeted because he, like one of
the Charlie Hebdo cartoonists killed
in January, is on a hit list circulated
by al-Qaeda supporters.
I am shocked. I just spoke for half
an hour about the cartoons, Islam
and freedom of speech and I had just
left the premises, he said.
This is an attack on the liberties
of all of us.
The Dutch politician said he
would return to the Netherlands but
plans to come back to the United
States next week for another speaking engagement.
Ms Geller called the shooting a
war on free speech.
What are we going to do? Are
we going to surrender to these monsters? she wrote on her website.
The war is here.
AFP

14 World

THE MYANMAR TIMES MAY 6, 2015

BANGKOK

Thais celebrate as ailing king makes rare public appearance


THAILANDS revered but frail King
Bhumibol Adulyadej made a rare public appearance yesterday, leaving the
hospital where he has been convalescing for much of the past few months.
A heavily guarded convoy carrying the wheelchair-bound 87-year-old
monarch left Bangkoks Siriraj Hospital for the Grand Palace, the sprawling
complex in the heart of the old quarter
that is the seat of the Chakri dynasty.
The palace visit was made on Coronation Day, a Thai public holiday that
marks King Bhumibols official coronation in 1950, three years after his
reign began following the death of his
brother.
The appearance of the worlds
longest-serving monarch after a recent no-show will be a source of relief
for many Thais who revere him as a
semi-divine figure.
He had been expected to appear
publicly for his birthday in December,
a time when the monarch traditional-

King Bhumibol Adulyadej travels from


Siriraj hospital for Coronation Day in
Bangkok on May 5. Photo: AFP

ly addresses his people. But the audience was cancelled at the last minute
on the advice of his doctors.
Most Thais have only known King
Bhumibol on the throne and anxiety
over the future once his six-decade
reign ends is seen as an aggravating
factor in Thailands bitter political
divide.
King Bhumibol, formally known as
Rama IX, has spent most of the past
few months in hospital after undergoing an operation to remove his gall
bladder in October.
In the past two months King Bhumibol had made two brief trips from
his hospital bed, one in early May to
a nearby palace and one last month
to view the Chao Praya river that runs
through Bangkok.
Hundreds of Thais gathered outside of Siriraj yesterday, many waving
flags and dressed in the royal colour
yellow.
When the kings convoy passed
many burst into applause and shouted
of,Long Live the King!
Thai television stations showed the
monarch seated on a thrown in a hall
at the Grand Palace for a ceremony
in front of the countrys elite, backed
by chanting Buddhist monks. He returned to hospital after the ceremony
ended.
Prominent royal figures who attended included the next in line
to the throne, Crown Prince Maha
Vajiralonkorn, and his sister Princess
Sirindhorn.
Prime Minister Prayut Chan-OCha, an ultra-royalist former army
chief who seized power in a coup, also
attended.
The military took over last May
following months of street protests
that led to the toppling of Yingluck
Shinawatras democratically elected
government.

Thai well-wishers hold portraits of King Bhumibol Adulyadej while waiting in front of Siriraj Hospital in Bangkok on May 5.
Photo: AFP

It was the latest chapter in Thailands long-drawn political conflict,


which broadly pits a Bangkok-based
middle class and royalist elite, backed
by parts of the military and judiciary,
against rural and working-class voters
loyal to Ms Yingluck and her brother
Thaksin, who was also deposed in a
coup in 2006.
Thailands generals have said they
will hand back power once the countrys constitution has been rewritten

and corruption has been expunged.


But critics say the military has used
its status as the defender of the monarchy as a pretext to grab power and
ensure the Shinawatras never return.
Bhumibol, who is shielded by one
of the worlds toughest royal defamation laws, has seen nearly 20 attempted or successful coups throughout his
reign.
Prosecutions under Thailands
controversial lese majeste law have

dramatically increased since the militarys takeover.


Last month a 58-year-old man was
jailed for 25 years for a series of Facebook posts that allegedly defamed the
monarchy, a sentence that received
widespread international condemnation, including from the UN.
Critics of the law say it is used as
a weapon against political enemies of
the royalist elite.
AFP

NEW DELHI

JAKARTA

Indonesia bans maids


from Middle East after
Saudi executions

Modi to visit China


amid growing tensions

INDONESIA will stop sending new


domestic workers to 21 Middle Eastern countries, reports said yesterday,
after the recent execution of two Indonesian women in Saudi Arabia angered Jakarta.
The ban affects countries including
Saudi Arabia, a major destination for
Indonesian maids, United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Bahrain and Egypt, and
will come into effect in three months
time, Manpower Minister Hanif Dhakiri was cited as saying in local media.
Jakarta, which has long complained about the treatment of Indonesian maids in the Middle East,
had already placed a moratorium on
sending new helpers to Saudi Arabia
in 2011 following the beheading of a
worker.
The new move is meant to be permanent. Maids already working in the
affected countries will be allowed to
stay and continue in their positions.
Indonesias anger at the executions
of its citizens abroad comes despite
the fact that Jakarta last week executed seven foreign drug convicts, drawing a storm of international protest.
According to the law, the government has the right to stop the placement of migrant workers in particular
countries if it is believed that their
employment degrades human values
and the dignity of the nation, Mr Dhakiri was quoted as saying by state-run
news agency Antara.
He said there were many problems with Indonesians working
abroad related to labour norms and

INDIAN Prime Minister Narendra


Modi will make his first visit to China next week, seeking to overcome
strains between the nuclear-armed
rivals over a border dispute and Beijings growing regional clout.
Mr Modi will meet with Chinas
leaders during the three-day visit
as part of an Asian tour that will
also take him to South Korea and
Mongolia, the Indian government
said yesterday. China confirmed the
visit.
Mr Modi is eager to secure Chinese funding for crumbling infrastructure and other projects for India after storming to power last May
on a pledge to reform and revive
Asias third-largest economy.
Ahead of the visit, Mr Modi
joined Sina Weibo, Chinas version
of Twitter, attracting tens of thousands of followers within hours.
Im looking forward to my visit
to China from May 14 to 16 to enhance the friendship between our
two ancient civilisations and the
largest developing countries, one
post said yesterday.
I firmly believe this visit to
China will strengthen the stability, development and prosperity of
Asia, wrote Mr Modi, an avid user
of social media who has 12 million
followers on Twitter.
Many comments on Weibo, however, were more confrontational
than welcoming, with plenty demanding India give back territory
along the border, a source of ten-

human rights violations.


Mr Dhakiri cited the execution
of Indonesian domestic workers Siti
Zainab and Karni binti Medi Tarsim,
who were both put to death for murder just days apart in April.
The foreign ministry summoned
the Saudi ambassador to Indonesia after both executions, complaining Jakarta had not been informed
beforehand.
Drug trafficking, rape, murder,
apostasy and armed robbery are all
punishable by death under the kingdoms strict version of Islamic sharia
law.
Mr Dhakiri also said Indonesia will
tighten placement of helpers to countries in the Asia-Pacific through measures such as auditing training centres
and blacklisting rogue agencies.
President Joko Widodo, who took
office last year, vowed in February that
maids would no longer be sent abroad
in future, although he did not mention
a date. Previous Indonesian governments have made similar pledges.
As well as the Middle East, Indonesia also sends domestic workers to
many parts of Asia, including Singapore, Hong Kong and Malaysia, and
has often complained about the treatment of its workers in those countries.
A Hong Kong woman was jailed
for six years in February for beating
and starving her Indonesian maid and
keeping her prisoner, in a high-profile
case that drew attention to the abuse
of domestic helpers in the financial
hub. AFP

sion between the two nations for


decades.
Mr Modi, a staunch nationalist,
has signalled he will pursue a more
muscular foreign policy than the
previous left-leaning government,
including on border issues.
Chinese President Xi Jinping
visited India in September when
the leaders of the worlds two mostpopulous countries emphasised cooperation and business deals such
as funding for railways.
But Mr Xis rare visit, the first by
a Chinese president in eight years,
was overshadowed by a standoff
between troops on their remote
frontier.
Relations are dogged by mistrust stemming from a brief, bloody
border war in 1962 over the northeastern Indian state of Arunachal
Pradesh, areas of which Beijing
claims as Zangnan or South Tibet.
Both sides regularly accuse the
others soldiers of border incursions.
Mr Modi warned China to shed
its expansionist mindset at an
election rally last year. China hit
back, saying it never waged a war
of aggression to occupy any inch of
land of other countries.
Mr Modi will travel to Beijing,
Shanghai and the historic northern
city of Xian before becoming the
first Indian premier to visit Mongolia. He will then head to South Korea
for talks with President Park GeunHye and business leaders.
Mr Modi on Weibo said Mr

Xi had invited him to visit his


hometown Xian during a previous
meeting.
Since winning power, Mr Modi
has tried to strengthen relations
with Indias neighbours, along with
the United States, as a counter-balance to Chinas rising influence in
the region.
China has cultivated close ties
with Indias arch-foe Pakistan, and its
growing influence over other South
Asian nations has sparked worries of
a deliberate strategy to encircle India.
Strategically, Mr Modi has
rounded up friends in Japan, US,
Vietnam and Australia in the last
one year and in that sense he is
going there [to China] with some
strength, New Delhi-based China
analyst Madhu Bhalla said.
The Chinese will look at him
more seriously than Indias previous
leader Manmohan Singh.
Mr Modi also said yesterday he
would meet business leaders in
Shanghai and promote India among
Chinese investors.
China is Indias biggest trading
partner with two-way commerce
totalling close to US$70 billion. But
Indias trade deficit with China has
soared from just $1 billion in 200102 to more than $40 billion, Indian
figures show.
Experts say Mr Modi must bridge
the deficit by seeking greater access to the Chinese market, with the
two sides targeting annual bilateral
trade of $100 billion this year. AFP

World 15

www.mmtimes.com
HONG KONG

Abandoned HK veterans seek UK rights


HONG Kong military veterans who
served in the British armed forces are
going into battle against their former
colonial ruler over their right to live
in Britain.
With some locals increasingly anxious about Beijings encroaching influence in Hong Kong, the veterans have
become the latest group to put pressure on Britain to provide an escape
route.
Three Hong Kong military veterans who say they were abandoned
when the city was handed back
to China in 1997 have applied for
full British passports in a test case
backed by some British members of
parliament.
A petition for right of abode, which
has garnered hundreds of signatures
from ex-servicemen, has also been
handed to 10 Downing Street in London, the official residence and office of
the British prime minister.
This is a right we deserve,
50-year-old former Royal Military
Police officer Harry Wong, one of the
three passport applicants, said.
We want to get back what is fair.
Mr Wong says he applied for a British passport before the handover, but
was unsuccessful.
Five hundred armed forces personnel were given British passports in the
1990s based on a points system, but
others were left behind, with campaigners saying the lower ranks were
overlooked.
Former army dog handler Alain
Lau, 52, said he was told by a local senior officer that he would not qualify
for a passport.

They just put us down here


when they left, says Mr Lau, who is
a spokesperson for the Campaign for
Abandoned British-Chinese Soldiers
Left in Hong Kong in 1997.
Concerns over Chinas influence
have grown recently, with mass protests toward the end of last year after
Beijing said that candidates for the
citys next leader would be vetted by a
loyalist committee.
Veterans say they now want an insurance policy for the younger generations of their families.
One day, Hong Kong may not be
the best for them. The political situation is quite chaotic now, said Mr
Wong, whose daughter is five years
old.
British MP Andrew Rosindell is
supporting the campaign and raised
the issue in the British parliament
in March, saying it is only just for
everyone who had served in the colonial military to be granted British
nationality.
It was not the choice of those loyal
people ... to move to the Peoples Republic of China in June 1997. [There
was] no self-determination for them,
no referendum about their future, he
said in a House of Commons adjournment debate on March 11. Adjournment debates are used to raise issues
without requiring MPs to vote.
But Home Office minister James
Brokenshire said in response that it
was a long-established practice for
British nationality to be lost when a
country ceased to be part of Britains
territory.
He said that Hong Kongs best-

Leung Wai-sang speaks about


veterans rights in Hong Kong on
February 2. Photo: AFP

qualified key people were given British nationality through a selection


scheme.
Before the handover, 50,000 selected Hong Kongers, mainly whitecollar professionals and civil servants
but also including military personnel,
were given British passports.
When contacted by AFP, the British Consulate in Hong Kong referred
reporters back to Mr Brokenshires remarks. This remains the position, a
spokesperson said.
The consulate did not confirm how
many passports had been given out
to military personnel before the hand
-over, but Mr Rosindell told
parliament it was 500.

Neither did the consulate confirm


how many were serving military personnel in 1997.
Those military personnel granted British passports were part of a
7000-strong quota reserved for the
disciplined services class, which also
included police officers and firemen,
the consulate said.
Before Britain gave the city back to
China in 1997 it offered Hong Kongers
a special British National Overseas
(BNO) status to calm those worried
about their future under Beijings rule.
Holders can enter the UK without a visa and get consular assistance
abroad, but have no right to live in
Britain.
Around 400,000 of Hong Kongs 7.3
million residents hold the BNO passport and some are now calling on Britain to allow them residency as they
seek to escape rising tensions.
Various campaign groups in Hong
Kong are pushing Britain for citizenship status, but the military veterans
say their claims carry more weight.
We were trained to fight. We also
took an oath to pay allegiance to the
Queen. We could have died for the
country if there was a war, says former infantry corporal Fung Lit-kau,
who applied for a British passport
before the handover but was also
unsuccessful.
Mr Fung says he struggled to find
a new career when he was forced to
quit the military in 1997, 14 years into
a 22-year contract, as the force was
disbanded.
He finally became a postman in
the United States after migrating

there thanks to his sister-in-law being a resident, but regularly returns to


Hong Kong and actively supports the
campaign.
They owe us an ethical responsibility. Its shameful for them to leave
us behind, Mr Fung, 55, said.
The history of Hong Kong-born
ethnic Chinese people working for
Britains military can be traced back
to the 19th century when they were
hired to build military facilities and
provide logistical support for British
soldiers.
They were sent on overseas missions as well as defending the territory
during the Second World War.
In 1962, the Hong Kong Military
Service Corps was formed, making
personnel recruited in Hong Kong
regular soldiers of the British Army.
Tommy Poon, 74, who became a
driving instructor after spending 22
years in The Royal Corps of Transport,
said Hong Kong military personnel
should not be treated differently to
others.
The Gurkhas also have it [British
nationality] now. Why can we not?
Mr Poon asked, referring to a celebrity-backed movement that won the
right for British soldiers from Nepal to
settle in the UK.
Another veteran, who preferred
not to be named, expressed bitterness
at their fate.
We guarded against China along
metal barricades on the border [before the handover]. And now we are
part of China. The situation is always
going to be embarrassing for us, he
said. AFP

THE MYANMAR TIMES May 6, 2015

the pulse 17

www.mmtimes.com

it

ge
t

yo

gers o
n
i
f
n

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

Passion and lunchboxes:


K-pops auntie fans stand proud
K-pop group Mad Town performs during filming of the K-pop Countdown television show. Photos: AFP/Ed Jones

HEY dont fit the normal fan profile, but South


Koreas 40-something K-pop aunties are every bit as
obsessed with their idols as their teenage counterparts.
Posters and photos of one of K-pops best-known
boy bands, Big Bang, adorn every wall of Lee UnYoungs apartment in Seoul a live-in shrine to a decade-long
devotion.
The fact that she is old enough to be the mother of any one
of the bands five-member line-up doesnt bother the 46-year-old
housewife at all.
There are a lot of auntie fans in their 40s like me, who started
following Big Bang when they were in their 30s, said Lee, who
has a particular soft spot for the groups leader, G-Dragon, who has
carved out a successful solo career on the side.
Lee admitted to feeling shy when she first started going to
Big Bang concerts and other events when she was already a good
20 years older than most of the teenage girls around her.
But then I slowly found some other fans who were around
my age and we immediately clicked with each other, she said.
These days, five of us get together once a month and all of
our conversations revolve around Big Bang and G-Dragon.
Lees husband Park Tae-Kyun is supportive and says he
admires his wifes commitment, although he could do without
the posters that cover even the windows of their apartment.
Even in summer, we dont get any sunlight, he complained.
The K-pop phenomenon has its roots in the 1992 debut of
Seo Taiji and Boys, a trio of hip-hop singer/rappers. The groups
fusion of Western pop music with Korean lyrics struck an
immediate chord with a generation that was coming of age in a
newly affluent, newly democratic South Korea.
They were followed by the first wave of idol groups like
H.O.T who spawned devoted and intensely competitive fan
bases and became models for the boy and girl bands who would
take the K-pop trend global over the next decade.
The idol band formula has evolved but its core image remains
the same young, attractive bands, with a carefully honed
fashion sense and meticulously choreographed dance moves.
The obsessive nature of their fan bases can be extreme,
especially the so-called sasaeng or stalker fans mostly 13-17year-old girls who have been known to break into their idols
homes.
Although the overwhelming majority of K-pop followers
are either teenagers or in their early 20s, Baek Sung-Hee, a
housewife in her mid-40s, sees nothing odd in her passion for
the music.
To me, age is just a number, nothing more, Baek said.
And anyway, I know some K-pop fans in their 50s and 60s, so
Im a younger sister compared to them, she added.
Baek and her friend Park Si-Woo, 45, are both huge fans of
the group Super Junior-M and one of its members in particular.
Henry Lau isnt even Korean, but he speaks it fluently and
Baek and Park think the 25-year-old Chinese-Canadian singer is
inspirational.
Park was going through a personal crisis when she first heard
Lau sing the title track from his 2013 debut mini-album Trap.
I was very drawn to the song, It just made me want to become
free and leave everything behind, she said.
So drawn, in fact, that she opened a snack bar in Seoul called
Cafe Henry, which sells Henry burgers with various fillings.
Like Baek, Park said she knew a number of committed K-pop
fans in their 60s who feel awkward about their musical passion.
Some of them have told me theyre just too embarrassed to
admit they are fans, she said.
Younger fans actually seem quite accepting of the aunties
known as imos and treat them with more admiration than
scorn.
Na So-Young, a 22-year-old student, says the older women
even turn out for airport events, when hardcore fans throng
departure gates to see their favourite band off on tour.
Sometimes we miss breakfast because we head out to the
airport in the early morning, Na said. Auntie fans bring lunch
boxes and hand them out to everybody. Its like a family.
A less wholesome image is attached to the aunties male
counterparts samchon or uncle fans middle-aged men
devoted to following K-pops sometimes highly sexualised girl
bands. AFP

A new army of
devoted fans are
proving K-pop isnt
just for teenagers
Park Si-Woo (right) sits in the bedroom of her son Yoo Gun-Hee as they sing together.

K-pop fan Park Si-Woo sits in her K-pop-themed cafe named Coffee Henry after her favourite singer.

Lee Un-Young poses with her collection of K-pop memorabilia.

18 the pulse

THE MYANMAR TIMES May 6, 2015

New York party of the


year kowtows to China

hinas march toward


global ascendancy has
taken another leap
forward at least when it
comes to new York high
society and its most glittering fashion
extravaganza, the Met Ball.
The citys party of the year,
attended by a-list film stars, singers
and models, the richest moguls and
most feted fashion designers, has
chosen China as the theme of its 2015
bash at The Metropolitan Museum of
art on May 4.
For Chinese actress Li Bingbing
so excited to be going for the first
time it shows that Western attitudes
toward her country, for so long a
communist bogeyman in the United
states, are beginning to change.
nowadays China is the hot topic,
she said in an interview at her luxury
hotel before embarking on three
hours of preparation with an army of
assistants she acknowledges is needed
to grace the red carpet.
People love to talk about China.
People are curious and want to know
the interest in Chinese culture,
she adds in hesitant but exuberant
English.
The ball is the annual fundraiser
for the museums Costume institute
and kicks off the exhibition China:
Through the Looking Glass, which
explores Chinese influences on
Western fashion.
it positions haute couture from
some of the worlds most celebrated
designers alongside works of Chinese
art, with the focus on imperial China,
1920-40s shanghai and the Peoples
Republic of China.
The ravishing 42-year-old actress
Li, who opted to wear Christian
Dior haute couture, is delighted that
China is the theme, pointing to the

wealth in Chinese history and how


much it can still be misunderstood in
america.
she tells of encountering
stereotypes as recently as promoting
2011 film Snow Flower and the Secret
Fan in the United states.
i met some americans. You
know what, they thought nowadays
that Chinese women still have feet
binding, she said.
its completely a huge change in
China now. Women in China are very,
very independent and capable and
hard-working.
all that makes China a fastgrowing luxury market for designer
clothes. Vogue China is celebrating
its 10th anniversary, for which Li was
photographed by Mario Testino on
the eve of the ball.
hollywood is also opening its
doors to China.
Li played a Chinese scientist in
2014 blockbuster Transformers: Age
of Extinction, which grossed Us$320
million at the box office in China,
eclipsing the $245 million made in
the United states.
They purposely add Chinese
culture, they purposely add Chinese
elements, pick up Chinese actors,
outfits, in the movie because they
want more viewers from China,
explained Li.
The Costume institute reopened
last year and was named after Vogue
editor-in-chief anna Wintour, who
has raised more than $125 million for
the centre since becoming trustee of
the Met in 1999.
Under her stewardship, the
benefit has become a benchmark for
international style and a commercial
success for Vogue.
attendees pay $25,000 for a single
ticket or $175,000 for a table of 10,

Li Bingbing

Katy Perry

according to The New York Times,


which said last years ball generated
almost $12 million and attracted over
25 million page views on vogue.com.
This years chairs of the gala are
Chinese actress Gong Li, Chineseborn businesswoman Wendi Murdoch
(the ex-wife of Rupert Murdoch),
Oscar winner Jennifer Lawrence,
Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer and of
course Wintour.
Li says Wintour, whom she has
met several times, ,is her fashion
icon. i think shes cool. she is my
idol. i love her so much.
nervous about speaking in
English, she conferred with her
assistants at times to find the right
expression in English and then
meticulously rolled the words in her
mouth to practice pronunciation.
she ranks number 28 on Forbes
China celebrity list, is a goodwill
ambassador for the United nations
and last year became the first asian
actress to give a speech on climate
change during the Un General
assembly.
now, she says, she is looking for
love.
i want to have a family, she says.
i want to have more time for myself,
my family, my parents. i want to find
a husband who really loves me.
Bubbly, charming and fiercely
intelligent, she radiates a sense of fun
and seemed perturbed over reports
that selfies and cell phones are
banned from the ball.
i think tonight if they dont allow
people to do that, its going to be a
little bit pity she said.
But then again, this is the ball that
hollywood actress Gwyneth Paltrow
told USA Today in 2013 was so unfun that she would never go again.
AFP

Miley Cyrus (left)


and Zoe Kravitz

Alexander Wang
and Lady Gaga
Beyonce

Anna Wintour

Madonna

Spike Lee

Karen Elson (left) and Lily Aldridge

Rihanna

Cara Delevingne

Justin Bieber
Naomi Campbell
Photos: AFP/Larry Busacca/Getty Images

the pulse 19

www.mmtimes.com

New book tells


the real story pf Nargis
MyiNt Kay thi
myintkay94thi@gmail.com

eTeOrOLOGiST U
Tun Lwin launched his
book, Nargis and I: I
feel pain, even though
I was hit by a flower to
recognise the seventh anniversary
of cyclone nargis on May 3 at the
royal rose restaurant in Yangon.
The 35-part book the title of
which refers to narcissus poeticus, a
type of flower also known as nargis
reveals his experience of the May
2008 cyclone which devastated
much of Myanmar.
nargis was one of the most
significant events in Myanmars
history. We should take lessons from
it so that we are better prepared if
we ever face a cyclone like nargis
in the future, U Tun Lwin, former
director general of the Department
of Meteorology and Hydrology, said.
Our country needs to do more
to protect ourselves from climate
change and natural disasters, and
i hope my book will be one of the
first steps toward doing so, he said.
in Nargis and I, he explains the
events that occurred in the lead-up
to the cyclone, which he says are
still misunderstood.
Most people blame the
Department of Meteorology

Cyclone Nargis devastated much of the country in May 2008. Photo: AFP

for not giving citizens enough


warning before the cyclone hit,
he said. in fact, the department
issued announcements in the
townships that were to be affected
every hour for several days, he
added.
i think people should know the
real story. This is one of the reasons
for publishing this book, he said.
cyclone nargis, the worst
natural disaster in the recorded
history of Myanmar, left over
138,000 people dead and over

750,000 buildings destroyed.


Davi Thant cin, chief editor
of Aung Pin Lae Environmental
Magazine, writes in the preface
to the book that U Tun Lwin
wrote Nargis and I with his heart
and feelings while bringing the
knowledge he has gained through
his work in the meteorology field.
The book, published by Aung
Publishing House, will retail for
K3000. Profits from the sale of the
book will be donated to the Aung
Foundation.

LONDON

Bells ring out for royal newborn


Princess Charlotte
Prince William and his wife Kate
announced on May 4 that their new
baby princess will be called charlotte
elizabeth Diana, as the sound of gun
salutes and bells pealing rang out
over London.
Britain has been on tenterhooks
waiting to discover what names the
Duke and Duchess of cambridge
would give their little princess, who
was born on May 2 and is fourth in
line to the throne.
The names announced after two
days of feverish speculation will be
interpreted as a tribute to Williams
parents and Queen elizabeth ii.
charlotte had been the
bookmakers late favourite and will be
seen as a tribute to Williams father
Prince charles, being the feminine
form of the heir to the thrones name.
Great-grandmother Queen
elizabeth ii has yet to meet the latest
addition to the royal family, but the
first middle name is a clear link to the
sovereign.
She has been on the throne
since 1952 and is set to become
Britains longest-reigning monarch
on September 9, overtaking Queen
Victoria.
Many royal watchers hoped the
baby would carry the name Diana
after Williams late mother, whose
death aged 36 in a car crash in Paris
in 1997 prompted a global outpouring
of grief.
Diana gave birth to William in the
same hospital where Kate delivered
charlotte.
When William proposed, he gave

Kate his mothers sapphire and


diamond engagement ring, and as
usual it was clearly visible in pictures
of her holding baby charlotte.
The Duke and Duchess of
cambridge are delighted to announce
that they have named their daughter
charlotte elizabeth Diana, said the
brief statement from their official
residence, Kensington Palace.
The baby will be known as Her
royal Highness Princess charlotte of
cambridge.
Dianas brother earl charles
Spencer, who memorably delivered
the eulogy at her funeral, said they
were perfect names.
He tweeted, My 2-year old
charlotte Diana will be thrilled at
cousinly name-sharing. is at an age
where thinks world revolves around
her!
The name charlotte, which is
also the middle name of Kates sister
Pippa, has historic royal standing.
King George iiis wife Queen
charlotte (1761-1818) was an
amateur botanist who used her
middle name instead of her first
name Sophie.
Their son King George iV named
his only child Princess charlotte but
she died following childbirth at the
age of 21 in 1817.
According to the Office for
national Statistics, charlotte was the
21st most-popular name for girls in
england and Wales in 2013.
The name announcement came
an hour after gun salutes rang out in
London to celebrate the birth. AFP

20 News

THE MYANMAR TIMES MAY 6, 2015

DOMESTIC FLIGHT SCHEDULES


YANGON TO MANDALAY
Flight
Y5 775
W9 515
YH 909
YH 917
YJ 891
7Y 131
K7 222
YJ 201
YJ 201
W9 201
YH 826
YH 835
YH 909
YH 831
YH 911
W9201
YH 829
8M 6603
YJ 601
YJ 761
YJ 211
YH 729
YH 737
YH 727
W9 251
YJ 151/W9 7151
7Y 241
K7 224
YH 731
Y5 234
W9 211

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

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

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

MANDALAY TO YANGON
Flight
Y5 233
YH 918
YH 910
W9 201
YJ 761
7Y 132
K7 223
YH 830
YH 912
YJ 202
YJ 202
YJ 761
YH 832
YH 827
YH 836
YH 910
YJ 212
YJ 212
YJ 602
YH 732
YH 732
7Y 242
YH 728
YJ 234
K7 225
W9 152/W97152
Y5 776
W9 211
8M 6604
8M 903
YH 738
YH 730
W9 252

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

Dep
7:50
8:30
8:40
8:40
8:40
8:50
8:55
11:05
11:30
11:30
12:00
13:10
13:20
13:20
13:20
13:20
15:00
15:00
15:40
16:40
16:40
16:40
16:45
16:50
16:50
17:05
17:10
17:10
17:20
17:20
17:25
17:45
18:15

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

YANGON TO NAY PYI TAW

NAY PYI TAW TO YANGON

Flight
6T 211
FMI A1
FMI B1
FMI C1
SO 102
6T 211
YJ 201
YJ 201

Flight
SO 101
6T 212
FMI A2
FMI B2
FMI C2
6T 212
YJ 202
YJ 201
YJ 212

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

Dep
7:10
7:15
10:45
17:00
18:00
18:30
7:00
7:00

Arr
8:00
8:15
11:45
18:00
19:00
19:20
7:55
10:20

YANGON TO NYAUNG U
Flight
YH 909
YH 917
YJ 891
YH 909
6T 451
K7 222
7Y 131
K7 224
YH 731
7Y 241
W9 129
W9 211
W9 129

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

Dep
6:00
6:10
6:20
6:30
6:30
6:30
6:30
14:30
14:30
14:30
15:30
15:30
15:30

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

Dep
7:00
7:00
7:00
7:00
7:00
7:00
9:10
11:00
11:30

Dep
7:00
8:15
8:35
13:30
18:20
19:35
10:35
8:10
16:00

Arr
8:00
9:05
9:35
14:30
19:20
20:25
13:25
13:25
16:55

NYAUNG U TO YANGON
Arr
8:25
7:45
7:40
8:05
7:35
7:50
7:50
17:25
17:25
17:10
17:35
17:40
17:35

YANGON TO MYITKYINA
Flight
YH 829
YH 826
YH 835
YH 831
YJ 201
YJ 201
6T 806
YJ 233
W9 251

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

Arr
9:40
10:05
10:05
10:05
9:50
10:20
11:40
15:10
14:25

Flight
YH 918
YJ 891
YH 910
7Y 132
K7 223
6T 451
YH 910
YH 732
K7 225
W9 129
7Y 242

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

Dep
7:45
7:55
8:05
8:05
8:05
8:05
8:25
17:25
17:40
17:50
17:25

Arr
10:45
10:35
9:25
10:45
11:00
8:45
9:45
18:45
19:00
19:10
18:45

MYITKYINA TO YANGON
Flight
YJ 202
6T 806
YH 827
YH 832
YH 836
YJ 202
YH 830
YJ 234
W9 252

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

Dep
10:05
10:30
11:55
11:55
11:55
10:35
12:30
15:25
16:45

Arr
12:55
11:40
14:45
14:45
14:45
13:25
14:55
18:15
19:40

YANGON TO HEHO
Flight
YH 917
YJ 891
6T 451
7Y 131
K7 222
7Y 131
YJ 891
Y5 649
YH 505
YJ 751
YJ 761
YJ 233
YH 727
YH 737
YH 727
K7 224
YH 731
7Y 241
W9 129

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

Dep
6:10
6:20
6:30
6:30
6:30
7:15
7:00
10:30
10:30
11:00
11:00
11:00
11:15
11:15
11:15
14:30
14:30
14:30
15:30

HEHO TO YANGON
Arr
9:35
10:35
8:45
9:20
9:30
10:05
9:10
12:45
11:55
12:10
12:10
12:10
12:40
12:40
12:40
15:45
15:55
15:40
16:40

Flight
YJ 891
6T 452
W9 201
7Y 132
YH 918
K7 223
YH 506
YJ 762
YH 732
7Y 242
YH 728
K7 225
YJ 602
YH 738
W9 129

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

Dep
6:45
7:00
11:15
15:30
8:20

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

Dep
10:30
11:30
11:45
8:00

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

Dep
8:00
10:30
10:30
11:30
11:00
15:45

Arr
8:15
9:05
13:20
17:00
10:40

Flight
Y5 326
7Y 532
K7 320
Y5 326
SO 202

Arr
12:20
12:55
12:55
9:55

Flight
K7 423
7Y 414
W9 309
6T 612

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

Dep
7:00
8:20
10:30
11:15

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

Days
2,4,6
3,5,7

Dep
11:00
11:00

Arr
10:05
17:40
13:35
18:45
15:40

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

Dep
10:10
12:35
13:10
13:15

Arr
11:30
13:55
14:55
14:20

Arr
8:10
9:40
11:30
12:20

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

Dep
9:10
11:35
12:05
13:10
14:05
16:55

Arr
11:30
13:55
14:20
14:00
14:55
17:50

Flight
K7 320
6T 708
SO 202
7Y 532

Flight
YJ 752
YH 730

YANGON TO PUTAO

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

Dep
12:25
14:15
14:20
16:35

Arr
13:35
15:15
15:40
17:40

Days
3,5,7
2,4,6

Dep
Arr
16:10 17:55
16:45 19:10

PUTAO TO YANGON

Flight

Days

Dep

Arr

YH 826

7:00

11:00

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)

Flight
YH 836

Days
1,7

FMI Air Charter


Tel: 240363, 240373, 09421146545

APEX Airlines (SO)


Tel:95(1) 533300 ~ 311
Fax : 95 (1) 533312

Air Mandalay (6T)


Tel: (+95-1) 501520, 525488,
Fax: (+95-1) 532275

Airline Codes
7Y = Mann Yadanarpon Airlines
K7 = Air KBZ
W9 = Air Bagan
Y5 = Golden Myanmar Airlines
YH = Yangon Airways
YJ = Asian Wings

LASHIO TO YANGON
Arr
13:00
13:15

Air Bagan (W9)

SO = APEX Airlines

DAWEI TO YANGON

YANGON TO LASHIO
Flight
YH 729
YJ 751

Dep
8:35
15:35
11:30
17:15
13:20

THANDWE TO YANGON

YANGON TO DAWEI
Flight
K7 319
SO 201
6T 707
7Y 531

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

SITTWE TO YANGON

Arr
8:55
13:10
11:20
13:50
11:50
16:40

Domestic Airlines

Tel: 383100, 383107, 700264


Fax: 652 533

MYEIK TO YANGON

YANGON TO THANDWE
Flight
K7 422
YH 505
7Y 413
W9 309
7Y 413
Y5 421

Arr
10:35
10:15
10:35
10:45
10:45
11:00
14:00
17:00
18:45
18:45
18:10
19:00
17:35
18:50
19:10

Yangon Airways (YH)

YANGON TO SITTWE
Flight
7Y 413
W9 309
6T 611
K7 422

Dep
9:25
9:15
9:25
9:35
9:35
9:45
11:55
15:50
15:55
15:55
16:00
16:00
16:25
16:40
16:55

Tel: 656969
Fax: 656998, 651020

YANGON TO MYEIK
Flight
Y5 325
K7 319
7Y 531
Y5 325
SO 201

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

Dep

Arr

11:00

14:45

YH 831

4,6

7:00

11:00

YH 832

4,6

11:00

14:45

YH 835

1,7

7:00

11:00

YH 827

11:00

14:45

W9 251

2,5

11:30

15:25

W9 252

2,5

15:45

19:40

6T = AirMandalay
FMI = FMI Air Charter

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

InternAtIonAl FlIGHt SCHeDUleS


Flights

YANGON TO BANGKOK
Days

Dep

Arr

PG 706
Daily
6:15
8M 335
Daily
7:40
TG 304
Daily
9:50
PG 702
Daily
10:30
TG 302
Daily
15:00
PG 708
Daily
15:15
8M 331
Daily
16:30
PG 704
Daily
18:20
Y5 237
Daily
19:00
TG 306
Daily
19:45
YANGON TO DON MUEANG

8:30
9:25
11:45
12:25
16:55
17:10
18:15
20:15
20:50
21:40

DD 4231
Daily
8:00
FD 252
Daily
8:30
FD 254
Daily
17:30
DD 4239
Daily
21:00
YANGON TO SINGAPORE

9:50
10:15
19:05
22:45

8M 231
Daily
8:25
Y5 2233
Daily
9:45
TR 2823
Daily
9:45
SQ 997
Daily
10:35
3K 582
Daily
11:15
MI 533
2,4,6
13:45
MI 519
Daily
17:30
3K 584
2,3,5
19:15
YANGON TO KUALA LUMPUR

12:50
14:15
14:25
15:10
15:45
20:50
22:05
23:45

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

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

Flights

Days

Flights

Days

Flights

Days

1,2,3,5,6
Daily
Daily
Daily
Daily
Daily
Daily

Dep

Arr

Dep

Arr

Dep

Arr

7:50
8:30
12:15
12:15
15:45
15:45
19:30

YANGON TO BEIJING

Flights

Days

Dep

Arr

Flights

BANGKOK TO YANGON
Days

Dep

Arr

TG 303
Daily
7:55
PG 701
Daily
8:50
Y5 238
Daily
21:30
8M 336
Daily
10:40
TG 301
Daily
13:05
PG 707
Daily
13:40
PG 703
Daily
16:45
TG 305
Daily
17:50
8M 332
Daily
19:15
PG 705
Daily
20:15
DON MUEANG TO YANGON

8:50
9:40
22:20
11:25
14:00
14:30
17:35
18:45
20:00
21:30

DD 4230
Daily
6:20
FD 251
Daily
7:15
FD 253
Daily
16:20
DD 4238
Daily
19:30
SINGAPORE TO YANGON

7:05
8:00
17:00
20:15

TR 2822
Daily
7:20
Y5 2234
Daily
7:20
SQ 998
Daily
7:55
3K 581
Daily
8:55
MI 533
2,4,6
11:35
8M 232
Daily
13:50
MI 518
Daily
15:15
3K 583
2,3,5
17:05
KUALA LUMPUR TO YANGON

8:45
8:50
9:20
10:25
15:00
15:15
16:40
18:35

AK 504
8M 9505
MH 740
8M 502
8M 9507
MH 742
AK 502
AI 227

8:00
11:15
11:15
13:50
14:50
14:50
19:00
13:20

Flights

Days

Flights

Days

Flights

Flights

Days

Dep

Arr

Dep

Arr

Dep

Arr

Daily
6:55
Daily
10:05
Daily
10:05
1,2,3,5,6
12:50
Daily
13:40
Daily
13:40
Daily
17:50
1
10:35
BEIJING TO YANGON
Days

Dep

Arr

CA 906
3,5,7
23:50 05:50+1
YANGON TO GUANGZHOU

CA 905
3,5,7
19:30
GUANGZHOU TO YANGON

22:50

8M 711
CZ 3056
CZ 3056

CZ 3055
CZ 3055
8M 712

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

10:25
16:30
15:50

1,2,3,5,6
7:00
KUNMING TO YANGON

9:55

Flights

Flights

CI 7916
Flights

Days

Dep

Arr

Flights

2,4,7
8:40
3,6
11:25
1,5
17:30
YANGON TO TAIPEI

13:15
16:15
22:15

1,2,3,5,6
10:50
YANGON TO KUNMING

16:15

CI 7915

Arr

Flights

CA 416
MU 2012
MU 2032
Flights

Days

Dep

Days

Dep

Arr

Daily
12:15
3
12:40
1,2,4,5,6,7 15:20
YANGON TO HANOI

Flights

Days

15:55
18:45
18:40

MU 2011
CA 415
MU 2031
Flights

Days

Dep

Arr

Days

Dep

Arr

Dep

Days

Dep

Days

Dep

Arr

Arr

Arr

3
8:25
Daily
10:45
1,2,4,5,6,7 13:55
HANOI TO YANGON

11:50
11:15
14:30

Days

Dep

Arr

Days

Dep

Arr

VN 956
1,3,5,6,7
19:10
21:30
YANGON TO HO CHI MINH CITY

VN 957
1,3,5,6,7
16:50
18:10
HO CHI MINH CITY TO YANGON

VN 942

Flights

Flights

2,4,7
14:25
YANGON TO DOHA

17:15

VN 943

1,5
14:05
1,4,6
8:00
YANGON TO SEOUL

Arr

19:50
11:10

Flights

Days

AI 701
QR 919
Flights

Flights

Days

Dep

Dep

Arr

2,4,7
11:50
DOHA TO YANGON

13:25

1,5
7:00
3,5,7
20:40
SEOUL TO YANGON

13:20
06:25+1

Days

AI 401
QR 918
Flights

Days

Dep

Dep

0Z 770
4,7
0:35
9:10
KE 472
Daily
23:30 07:50+1
YANGON TO HONG KONG

KE 471
Daily
18:45
0Z 769
3,6
19:50
HONG KONG TO YANGON

KA 251
KA 251

5:55
5:45

KA 252
KA 250

Arr

Flights

Flights

Days

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

Arr

YANGON TO TOKYO

Flights

Days

NH 814

Daily

Dep

21:45

06:50+1

YANGON TO DHAKA

Flights

Days

BG 061
BG 061
Flights

Dep

1:30
1:10

1,6
4

Dep

15:35
13:45

YANGON TO INCHEON
Days

Dep

Arr

17:00
15:10
Arr

KE 472
Daily
23:30 07:50+1
8M 7702
Daily
23:30 07:50+1
8M 7502
4,7
00:35
09:10
W9 607
4,7
14:20
16:10
PG 724
1,3,5,6
13:10
15:05
YANGON TO CHIANG MAI
Flights

Days

Y5 251
7Y 305

2,4,6
1,5

YANGON TO GAYA

Flights

Days

8M 601
AI 236
AI 234

Days

AI 236

Dep

13:10

YANGON TO KOLKATA
Days

AI 234
AI 228
Flights

Dep

3,5,6
7:00
2
13:10
1,5
14:05
YANGON TO DELHI

Flights

Flights

Dep

6:15
11:00

1
5

Dep

14:05
18:45

YANGON TO MUMBAI

AI 775

Days

1,5

Dep

14:05

MANDALAY TO BANGKOK

Flights

PG 710

Days

Daily

Dep

14:05

MANDALAY TO SINGAPORE

Flights

MI 533
Y5 2233

Days

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

Dep

15:55
7:50

MANDALAY TO DON MUEANG

Flights

FD 245

Days

Daily

Dep

12:45

MANDALAY TO KUNMING

Flights

MU 2030

Days

Daily

Dep

13:50

NAY PYI TAW TO BANGKOK

Flights

PG 722
PG 722
PG 722

Days

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

Dep

20:15
19:30
20:15

Arr

8:05
12:50
Arr

Flights

1,6
4

Days

Days

2,4,6
1,5

Dep

12:30
10:40
Dep

Flights

Flights

19:35

AI 675

Arr

Flights

Dep

9:25
13:45

GAYA TO YANGON
Days

Dep

2
9:10
3,5,6
9:20
5
15:00
DELHI TO YANGON
Days

AI 235

Arr

Dep

7:00

KOLKATA TO YANGON
Days

1
5

Dep

10:35
13:30

MUMBAI TO YANGON
Days

1,5

Dep

6:10

BANGKOK TO MANDALAY

PG 709

Days

Daily

Dep

12:00

SINGAPORE TO MANDALAY

Flights

20:50
14:15

Y5 2234
MI 533

Arr

Flights

Days

Daily
2,6

Dep

7:20
11:35

DON MUEANG TO MANDALAY

FD 244

Days

Daily

Dep

10:50

KUNMING TO MANDALAY

Flights

16:40

MU 2029

Arr

Flights

23:15
22:30
23:15

11:00

INCHEON TO YANGON

Flights

AI 227
AI 233

Arr

Days

Flights

17:20
19:45

15:00

Dep

DHAKA TO YANGON

Y5 252
7Y 306

Flights

Arr

Daily

Days

Daily

Dep

13:00

BANGKOK TO NAY PYI TAW

PG 721
PG 721
PG 721

Days

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

Dep

17:00
18:25
17:45

Arr

00:30+1
23:30

KE 471
Daily
18:45
8M 7701
Daily
18:45
8M 7501
3,6
19:50
W9 608
4,7
17:20
PG 723
1,3,5,6
11:05
CHIANG MAI TO YANGON

Arr

16:30

Days

Flights

Flights

Dep

22:50
21:45

Arr

22:25
23:25

TOKYO TO YANGON

BG 060
BG 060

AI 235
8M 602
AI 233

Arr

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

NH 813

8:20
14:10
15:05
16:30

Days

Arr

Arr

15:40
Arr

14:55
13:05
Arr

22:25
22:25
23:25
18:10
12:00
Arr

10:15
14:35
Arr

12:10
12:30
18:00

International Airlines
All Nippon Airways (NH)
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

Air India

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

Thai Airways (TG)

Tel: 255491~6. Fax: 255223

Tiger Airline (TR)

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
DD = Nok Airline
FD = Air Asia
KA = Dragonair
KE = Korea Airlines
MH = Malaysia Airlines
MI = Silk Air

Arr

12:10
Arr

13:20
18:00
Arr

13:20

MU = China Eastern Airlines


NH = All Nippon Airways
PG = Bangkok Airways
QR = Qatar Airways
SQ = Singapore Airways
TG = Thai Airways

Arr

13:20
Arr

16:30
15:00

TR = Tiger Airline
VN = Vietnam Airline
AI = Air India
Y5 = Golden Myanmar Airlines

Arr

12:15
Arr

Subject to change
without notice

12:50
Arr

19:00
19:35
19:45

Day
1 = Monday
2 = Tuesday
3 = Wednesday

4
5
6
7

=
=
=
=

Thursday
Friday
Saturday
Sunday

22 Sport
snooker

THE MYANMAR TIMES May 6, 2015

WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS

US and Jamaica show


steel at World Relays

Stuart Bingham poses with his trophy after the final at Sheffields Crucible Theatre. Photo: AFP

Underdog Bingham
on cue for triumph
at the Crucible

TUaRT Bingham won


the 2015 World Championship final, beating
Shaun Murphy 18-15 at
Sheffields Crucible Theatre on May 4 to take snookers most
prestigious title for the first time in
his 20-year professional career.
This all-English clash was a seesaw affair, with Bingham resuming
on May 4 9-8 behind, having been
3-0 and 8-4 down at various stages
of the May 3 opening day in this
best-of-35-frame contest.
But the first-time finalist won the
May 4 opening session 6-2 to establish a 14-11 lead.
Bingham edged further ahead at
15-12 before Murphy, world champion in 2005, fought back to level at
15-15.
The 38-year-old Bingham, who
earlier in the tournament knocked
out five-time world champion Ronnie OSullivan, then won a marathon
64-minute frame to edge closer to
the title before a break of 65 took
him to within touching distance at
17-15 in front.
Bingham, from Basildon, east of
London, then completed his victory
in fine style with a break of 88 to
become the oldest player to lift the
world championship trophy since

Athletics

Welsh great Ray Reardon won the


1978 final aged 45.
at one stage at 15-15 I thought I
was going to do Shauns [runner-up]
speech, Bingham told the BBC.
Twenty years as professional,
blood sweat and tears on the road,
qualifying in places like Prestatyn
and Malvern ... It is unbelievable.
Meanwhile, Murphy took his defeat in sporting fashion, saying, I
gave it my best and came up against
an inspired Stuart Bingham.
Sometimes your name is on the
trophy. as a snooker geek like Stuart, there is not a player alive who
deserves it more than him.
at 15-12 in front, Bingham was
in charge but Murphy, appearing in
this third Crucible final and looking
to equal the achievement of snooker
great alex Higgins in winning a second world title a decade after his
first, was far from finished.
Binghams over-cut black gave
Murphy a chance and he responded
with a break of 75 before making 64
in the next.
Murphy needed three chance to
win a scrappy 30th frame as he levelled the match but then gave away
38 points in fouls in the next after
Bingham laid a couple of excellent
snookers.

So long did the frame last the


players took a toilet break after an
hour, rather than waiting for it to
finish as is normally the case.
When they returned Bingham
potted the pink to go 16-15 up, with
tennis great Martina navratilova, his
newest fan, tweeting, This frame
was the equivalent of an 18:16 set or
something like that ... wow.
By contrast, Bingham sped through
the 32nd frame and, after Murphy
missed a long red, took his chance to
be crowned champion in what turned
out to be the final frame of the match.
It had seemed in the early stages
as if Murphys greater experience
might prove decisive.
But Bingham, a 50/1 outsider
with bookmakers before this tournament started, demonstrated admirable resolve.
Bingham 15 years ago caused a
major upset by knocking out defending champion Stephen Hendry,
but for five successive years starting
in 2003 didnt even qualify for the
World Championship.
It wasnt until he was 35 that
Bingham won the first ranking title of his career, the 2011 australian
Goldfields Open, and he had to wait
a further three years for his second,
the Shanghai Masters. AFP

in PictUres

Photo: AFP

Austrian and
Danish knights
fight in the 10 vs
10 competition
in the Medieval
Combat World
Championship
at Malbork
Castle, Poland,
on May 3.

THE United States and Jamaica


showed off their amazing strength in
track depth by dominating the second
and final day of the IaaF World Relays
on May 3.
although in-form sprinter Justin
Gatlin failed in his bid for a second
gold, the americans won four of the
six events raced at a packed Thomas a
Robinson Stadium in the capital of the
Bahamas in warm, windy conditions.
While sprint star Usain Bolt was
an absentee from Jamaicas victorious
mens 4x200m team even though he
had been seen warming up Veronica
Campbell-Brown held it together for
the Jamaican women to see off Carmelita Jeter in the 4x100m.
We came to execute our race and
win the race, Campbell-Brown said.
We passed the baton around and ran
to the line.
There was no double joy for Gatlin
after his success in part of the american 4x100m squad as his quartet were
disqualified from the mens 4x200m
relay, won by the Bolt-less Jamaica in
1min 20.97sec.
The Jamaicans overcame a botched
baton change between nickel ashmeade and Rashid dwyer to steam
through, Gatlin finishing strongly but
later ruled out.
It was an exciting win, said ashmeade. We came here with a strong
team. Were all focusing on Beijing
[World Championships] and we had a
great start to the season to build on.
Campbell-Brown ensured more
sprint gold for Jamaica by anchoring
the home quartet comprising Simone

Facey, Kerron Stewart and Schillonie


Calvert in 42.14sec, the United States
heading off Britain for silver.
The United States went on to
break local hearts by taking the mens
4x400m, LaShawn Merritt outstripping veteran Chris Brown on the final leg for victory in 2min 58.43sec.
The Bahamas, the reigning Olympic
champions, finished second ahead of
Belgium.
Sanya Richards-Ross won her second gold of the weekend. after her
efforts in the distance medley, she
helped steer a US team including
Phyllis Francis, natasha Hastings and
Francena McCorory to victory in the
4x400m in 3min 19.39sec ahead of Jamaica and Britain.
The US women also retained their
4x800m title, Chanelle Price, Maggie
Vessey, Molly Beckwith-Ludlow and
alysia Johnson Montano combining
to win in 8min 00.62sec. Poland and
australia completed the podium.
Replacing last years 4x1500m relay, the mens distance medley, featuring four runners competing over
1200m, 400m, 800m and 1600m 10
laps making up 4km was also won by
the United States.
Ben Blankenships gamesmanship
up against Timothy Cheruiyot on the
final leg, after Brandon Johnsons
powerful run on the third leg, paid
off handsomely against the secondplaced Kenyans, with australia finishing third.
The winning time of 9min 15.50sec
was credited as a new world record
time in the rarely run event. AFP

ice hockey

Canada, US keep perfect


record at worlds
Canada and the United States are
the only teams with a perfect record at
the ice hockey world championships
after winning their third games in the
group stage on May 4.
The USa went top of Group B,
played in the eastern city of Ostrava,
after beating defending champions
Russia 4-2.
Los angeles Kings forward Trevor
Lewis put the US team 1-0 ahead in
the sixth minute.
Russian defenceman anton Belov
levelled the score early in the second
period but Boston defenceman Torey
Krug scored a second US goal three
minutes later.
arizona forward Marc arcobello,
who swapped teams in the nHL three
times this season, raised the score to
3-1 in the 52nd minute.
Sergei Plotnikov narrowed the goal
difference four minutes before the end
but new York Islanders forward Brock
nelson then found an empty net nine
seconds before the siren to round off the
score as Russia had pulled Columbus
Blue Jackets goalie Sergei Bobrovski.
Undoubtedly those guys are going
to get their chances, their opportunities, said Krug.
You cant stop all of them but we
did a pretty good job of keeping that
number down.
We did well at realising when we
had to calm the game down, get the
puck out of the zone.
In Group a, played in Prague, Canada beat the Czech Republic 6-3 a day
after humiliating Germany 10-0.
Edmonton forward Jordan Eberle
scored four minutes into the game
and his nHL teammate Taylor Hall
added another on 19 minutes, but the
Czechs narrowed the lead through arizona wing Martin Erat before the first
intermission.

The home fans went frantic as Martin Zatovic put the Czechs level in the
36th minute, but their joy was shortlived as Philadelphia forward Sean
Couturier handed the star-packed Canadian team a lead two minutes later.
dallas Stars young gun Tyler
Seguin and Pittsburgh Penguins star
Sidney Crosby scored power-play goals
in the last period.
Former St Louis Blues forward
Vladimir Sobotka narrowed the difference, only for Los angeles forward
Tyler Toffoli to round off the score a
minute before the final siren.

A Norwegian holds down a Finn


during their 5-0 loss. Photo: AFP

In the first Group a game of the


day, Boston forward Loui Eriksson
scored a hat-trick as Sweden thrashed
underdogs Latvia 8-1.
Joel Lundqvist, playing for Frolunda in the Swedish league, had a goal
and an assist while arizona defenceman Oliver Ekman-Larsson assisted
twice.
In the evening game in Group B,
Finland beat norway 5-0.
Finland forward Joonas Kemppainen scored twice and added an
assist and defenceman Esa Lindell
had a goal and two assists while nashville goalie Pekka Rinne stopped 20
shots for his second shutout of the
tournament. AFP

Sport 23

www.mmtimes.com
ASIA

FootBALL

Cambodia PM
refuses bet payout
after Pacquiao loss

Romeo Fernandes makes his debut in the Brazilian league. Photo: Atletico Paranaense/Facebook

Indian football
finds new role
model in Romeo

HE brazilian debut of Romeo Fernandes was saluted by the indian footballing authorities on may 3
as the latest in a series
of breakthroughs for the sport in a
country dominated by cricket.
Fernandes, a 22-year-old from
assolna in goa state, enjoyed a successful debut as a second-half substitute in his club atletico Paranaenses
5-0 weekend thrashing of nacional
to become the first indian player
ever to appear in a brazilian league
encounter.
it was a loan spell away from
parent club dempo Sports Club in
goa under the watchful eye of former brazil star Zico which alerted
the brazilians to the talents of the
under-23 international who has
broken into the full squad and who

primarily features as a winger.


His appearance comes in a season which has also seen gurpreet
Singh Sandhu make a first start for
norwegian side Stabaek, whom he
joined last year from East bengal,
thereby becoming the first indian to
play a professional match for a topflight European outfit.
indian Football is going through
a transition. both Romeo and gurpreet are role models and will inspire the younger generation further, all india Football Federation
media manager nilanjan datta told
aFP, saluting the growing plethora
of talent on display in india.
despite britains strong asian
community, barely a handful of aspiring footballers have made the
professional grade to date.
british-born
Pakistani
Zesh

Rehman played briefly in the top


flight with Fulham, becoming the
first british asian to play in the Premier League when he debuted at anfield in 2004, but has to date been
the exception to prove the rule.
The player now plies his trade
for malaysias Pahang Fa and visited myanmar this year for his sides
aFC Cup clash with mandalays
Yadanarbon FC.
indian footballing authorities
have been stepping up efforts to
raise the sports professional profile
and have been deepening links with
clubs in England.
Last week, an indian Super
league delegation made a five-day
visit to several Premier League
clubs, including arsenal, to discuss
issues such as governance, youth development and branding. AFP

FootBALL

Prince Ali vows to stay in FIFA race


and to challenge Blatter to the end
FiFa vice president Prince ali bin al
Hussein on may 5 vowed to stay in
the campaign to be leader of footballs world body until the end
following speculation that he could
withdraw.
The 39-year-old Jordanian royal
is one of three challengers to FiFa
president Sepp blatter facing an uphill challenge against the Swiss veteran in an election on may 29.
The prince, dutch Football association chief michael van Praag
and former Portugal star Luis Figo
have all said an accord may be necessary to pick one candidate against
blatter.
but Prince ali, a FiFa vice
president, said in a statement he
will stay in the presidential race

GAMBLING

especially after the supportive


and positive responses from the
football federations he visited
in different countries, and the
warm welcome his manifesto has
received worldwide.
i will continue the race until the
end, Prince ali said.
The prince said the statement followed social media speculation that
he would consider withdrawing to
back a single challenger.
He said he is still visiting football
associations around the world to get
support for his campaign to change
the reputation of FiFa.
The prince told the bbC in an
interview that at some point there
would have to be a discussion on a
single challenger.

blatter, 79, is the strong favourite to win a fifth term at the head of
the worlds most powerful sporting
federation.
The prince, van Praag and Figo
have been campaigning for change
following scandals, including the
awarding of the 2022 World Cup to
Qatar.
The prince said this week that
FiFa has to be more open, more
transparent.
The election will be held at the
FiFa Congress in Zurich on may 29.
The winner will need a majority from FiFas 209 member federations. blatter has received strong
public backing from nearly every regional confederation except Europes
UEFa. AFP

Cambodian Prime minister Hun


Sen admitted may 4 he wont make
good on a US$5,000 bet he lost on the
recent bout between Floyd mayweather and regional hero manny Pacquiao
because he was so incensed by the
match outcome.
The 62-year-old strongman delivered a nine-minute rebuke of judges
who ruled mayweather had squarely
beaten Pacquiao in Las Vegas on may
2.
Echoing many of Pacquiaos Filipino compatriots who have also cried
foul, Hun Sen accused the american
officials of being biased towards mayweather in the $400 million fight.
Us viewers could barely give a
point for Floyd, but the three judges
unanimously decided Floyd was the
winner, he said.
Hun Sen said he had made a $5000
bet with an official on the match outcome, a bet he would no longer honour.

i would not settle this. i will not


give you the money, he said without
giving further details.
The admission is somewhat surprising given gambling is technically
illegal in Cambodia outside of licensed
casinos although there is a thriving
black market for betting on everything
from the English Premier League to local cock fights.
The strongmans betting habits
were not lost on many Cambodian
social media users.
Hun Sen violated the betting rules
by gambling on boxing, wrote one
Facebook user So naro.
Hun Sen has ruled Cambodia
for the last 30 years, tolerating little
opposition.
He is known for his love of sports,
particularly football, and has previously broken off from speeches to give
his thoughts on a recent match or surprise score. AFP

CrICket

Bangladesh eye first


win over Pakistan
bangLadESH hope to build on their
new found confidence by securing
their first-ever Test victory over Pakistan when the second and final match
starts in dhaka today.
The Tigers are buoyed by a remarkable fightback in the drawn first Test
in Khulna where they avoided defeat
for the first time in nine matches
against Pakistan despite trailing by
296 runs on the first innings.
The gallant display followed their
dominant form against the struggling
Pakistanis in the limited-overs contests where the hosts swept the oneday series 3-0 and easily won the lone
Twenty20 international.
in Khulna, bangladesh showed
their batting prowess as Tamim iqbal
hit his nations highest score of 206
and shared a 312-run opening stand
with imrul Kayes (150) in the crucial
second innings.
bangladeshs only series wins so far
since gaining Test status in 2000 have
come against fellow wooden-spooners
Zimbabwe and against an understrength West indies.
but former Test captain Habibul
bashar felt the time had arrived for
bangladesh to take a major step forward and win the series against Pakistan, who are placed third in the official rankings.
We can surely go for the kill,
bashar said ahead of the Test at the
Sher-e-bangla stadium. We have a
positive mindset which can help us
gain an edge over the opponents.
our comeback in Khulna raised
the teams confidence to a new level.
not many teams can do what we did
against a side like Pakistan who have
such a versatile bowling attack.
after such a performance, the boys
will naturally look for a win in dhaka.
bangladesh are worried about the
fitness of captain and wicket-keeper
mushfiqur Rahim, having already lost
strike seam bowler Rubel Hossain for
the Test due to a side strain.
Rahim hurt a finger on the right
hand while attempting a catch in
Khulna and left the field. He batted in
the second innings but was dismissed
without scoring.
bashar, a selector, said that Rahim
could be replaced behind the stumps
by the uncapped Litton das, who was
a wicketkeeper at under-19 level.

Iqbal celebrates his century. Photo:


AFP

Rahim can play as a batsman


alone, but if he is unable to keep, we
may include Litton, he said.
Pakistan have brought in all-rounder bilawal bhatti to replace seamer
Rahat ali, who had been ruled out of
the tour ahead of the first Test due to a
hamstring injury.
it was uncertain if star off-spinner
Saeed ajmal will be recalled after being ignored for the third one-dayer
and the Khulna Test.
ajmal, who returned to international cricket with a remodelled action
in the preceding limited-overs series,
failed to impress with just one wicket
in three games on the tour.
ajmal told the Cricinfo website
that he needed time to regain confidence and return to his best.
i knew it will be tough moving
forward, said ajmal. id said prior
to coming here that i need time and
i am disappointed that i am not
able to fulfil the expectations of the
nation.
but i spoke to the captain and the
coach and they have a plan for me. i
need time to regain my confidence. it
does not come overnight. AFP

Sport
24 THE MYANMAR TIMES May 6, 2015

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

Around the World


Championships
SPORT 22

BOxing

Pacquiao needs
surgery, team
hits out at
Commission
M
anny Pacquiaos camp
accused the nevada
athletic Commission on
May 4 of denying them
treatment for an injury
to his right shoulder which will now
require surgery to repair.
Pacquiao, who lost a unanimous
decision to Floyd Mayweather in their
welterweight unification fight on May
2 is expected to undergo surgery later
this week for a torn rotator cuff, ESPn
reported on May 4.
Dr neal Elattrache described the
tear as significant and said Pacquiao could be out between nine and 12
months.
We have an MRI scan that confirms he has a rotator cuff tear. He
has a significant tear, Elattrache of
the Kerlan Jobe Orthopedic Clinic told
ESPn.
Elattrache is one of the most respected surgeons in north america,
having operated on new England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady, Los angeles
Dodgers pitcher Zack Greinke and Los

angeles Lakers star Kobe Bryant.


no specific date has been set for
the surgery.
Pacquiao and Mayweather met at
the MGM Grand in Las Vegas in one
of the most anticipated showdowns in
boxing history, which promises to be
the richest fight ever with revenues of
about US$400 million.
The super fight also cemented Mayweather as the top pound-for-pound
fighter of the era but that was before severity of Pacquiaos injury was
revealed.
The southpaw clearly had difficulty with his right hand during the
12-round title fight as he landed just
18 jabs, compared to 67 for Mayweather. The injury also limited Pacquiaos
power punches as he connected on
just 27 percent compared to the defensively-minded Mayweather who connected on 48 percent.
Pacquiaos camp said the Commission refused them treatment on fight
night despite them having prior approval to use an anti-inflammatory

injection by the United States antiDoping agency, which conducted random drug testing on the boxers in the
build-up to the fight.
Pacquiaos camp had planned give
him Toradol, a non-steroid anti-inflammatory, just before the fight, but
the Commission stepped in and halted
the treatment. The nevada Commission, which oversees boxing in the
state, said they were not told about
Pacquiaos injury until the night of the
fight.
Pacquiaos team said USaDa approved the injection five days before
the fight and they disclosed their desire to use it on fight night in their
medical forms.
This was disappointing to Team
Pacquiao since they had disclosed
the injury and treatment to USaDa,
USaDa approved the treatments
and Manny had listed the medication on his pre-fight medical form,
Pacquiaos camp said in the May 4
statement.
Pacquiao said he hurt the

Pacquiao holds his shoulder in the post-fight press conference. Photo: AFP

shoulder in training camp some


three weeks before the bout, and
they considered postponing the contest dubbed the Fight of the Century by promoters.
His camp said when the injury first
happened, Pacquiao visited Elattraches Kerlan Jobe Orthopedic Clinic in
Los angeles and he was told to treat
it with rest before resuming his heavy
training regime for the fight.
after
some
rest,
Pacquiao

continued to work with trainer Freddie Roach who felt, along with promoter Bob arum, that the injury had
improved enough to allow the fight to
go ahead.
Manny continued to train and his
shoulder improved, though not 100
percent, the statement said. With
the advice of his doctors, Manny still
decided to proceed with the fight. His
shoulder wasnt perfect but it had improved in camp. AFP

ARCHERY

Archers aim for gold takes team to S Korea


KYAw Zin HlAing
kyawzinhlaing.mcm@gmail.com

A Myanmar archer takes a shot in


training. Photo: Staff

FInaL preparations for next months


Southeast asian Games are under way
as Myanmars archery team take flight
to South Korea for a training camp
ahead of the Singapore competition
that will be held from June 10 to 14 at
the Kallang Cricket Field.
The camp will run from May 8 until June 3, two days before the opening
ceremony of the 28th SEa Games.
Our aim in visiting South Korea is
to develop the experience for our athletes, particular our juniors who lack
a depth of international experience,
Myanmar archery Federations vice
secretary Kay The told The Myanmar
Times.
South Korean archers are a dominant force on the world stage. Since
their first taste of Olympic gold medal
success in 1984, a further 18 gold medals have gone to the East asian nation
including three of the four medals
available for the sport at London 2012.
Eight male and eight female archers will accompany five Myanmar
coaches and two Korean coaches who
have been working with the team at

their nay Pyi Taw base.


While in Korea the squad will also
compete in local competitions, all
in an effort to achieve their target of
three gold medals at this years games.
For a team based primarily on participants from the 2013 contest when
Myanmar won only one gold and four
bronze shooting on home turf the
challenge is a tough one.
But the team also features new
blood who have joined the team on expeditions to the 2014 asian Games and
the 2015 asia Cup, a world ranking
event hosted in Bangkok last March
in order to gather experience handling
their bow under pressure.
Our entry into these competitions
has all been as part of our plan running up to this years SEa Games. We
may not have taken medals away from
these events but the experience they
have delivered for our junior athletes
has been invaluable, said Kay The.
We will compete in 10 [of a possible 12] of the archery events. Our aim
of three gold medals is a tough one
but we will give it our best. Indonesia,
Malaysia, the Philippines and Vietnam will all be attending with strong
representation.

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