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Myanmar: Locals protest Latpadaung mine resumption

Nearly 150 local residents from villages around the Latpadaung area held a protest on Friday as mining activities recommenced at a controversial copper mine project in Sagaing division. Speaking to DVB, some of the demonstrators including Buddhist monks said that gunpowder explosions marked the resumption of the Chinese-backed project which was...

Thailand: Government signs MoU to support landmark labour law

The government has signed a memorandum of understanding with a network of labour groups involving two key International Labour Organisation conventions, which could lead to landmark changes in Thailand’s labour law guaranteeing workers – including migrants – certain legal rights and conditions. It’s something authorities have long tried to...

Myanmar: Locals not consulted on resettlement plan for Thilawa SEZ project, says DRDO

Local residents who will be displaced by the Thilawa Special Economic Zone (SEZ) project say they were forced to sign the SEZ resettlement action plan without knowing its contents. “They ordered us to sign the RAP. But we don’t know what data is included in the RAP,” a local...

Myanmar: Residents Protest Letpadaung Copper Mine Resumption

The China-backed Letpadaung copper mine in northern Myanmar’s Sagaing region has resumed operations without fulfilling conditions imposed by lawmakers, residents said in a meeting with top government officials Tuesday, lodging fresh calls for a halt to the project. The complaints were made at a meeting in Sarlingyi town with Hla...

Cambodia: Ethnic villagers point finger at land official

Rights group Adhoc is investigating claims that a Ratanakkiri province cadastral officer is illegally grabbing and selling off forest land, officials at the organisation said. Khin Sophal, a director of the O’Yadav district cadastral office, bought land titles from 50 families in the province and sold the parcels to a...

Myanmar: Stop arresting farmers, says 88 Generation

By arresting and sentencing so many farmers and activists for protesting land grabs, Burmese authorities are affecting the stability of the state, warned the 88 Generation Peace and Open Society. At a press conference held at the 88 Generation office in Rangoon on Friday, various speakers complained about land seizures...

Democratic Voice of Burma: Irrawaddy villagers protest over fishing rights

Some 150 villagers gathered on Tuesday morning in central Burma’s Irrawaddy division to protest a government scheme they say is preventing them from fishing in local ponds to earn a livelihood. The villagers from Ma-ubin, some 25 miles west of Rangoon, are demanding the right to fish freely in local...

Cambodia: Hopes High for Maid Program

In one corner of the cavernous training centre, a woman patiently strips the baby blue sheets off a queen-size bed, removing the flower-patterned pillowcases and folding them neatly to one side. Under the watchful eye of an instructor, she then remakes the bed, carefully fluffing the pillows and making sure...

Thailand: 500,000 People ‘Enslaved’ in Thailand

Thailand has the highest prevalence of modern slavery in Southeast Asia with up to half a million people living in forced servitude, according to a new index by international charity the Walk Free Foundation. The index, which will be published annually, attempts to measure of the extent of modern slavery...

Over 200,000 Indonesians enslaved: Study

The Global Slavery Index 2013, published by the Walk Free Foundation, an Australian-based organization dedicated to eradicating modern-day slavery, reveals that there are more than 200,000 slaves in Indonesia. The Walk Free Foundation’s inaugural Global Slavery Index, which was released at Chatham House in London on Thursday, estimates that there...