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Carmel Barrau
Apr 1, 2013

Newspaper Comeback Facing Problems in Myanmar

Apr 1, 2013 by Carmel Barrau

Myanmar authorities have recently granted licenses to 16 daily newspapers in the country but hampered by archaic machinery, a lack of reporters, as well as a general lack of funds, only 4 of these papers could return to the stands. This is still a monumental starting point seeing as that it's been almost 50 years since these paper have been available to newsstands. Myanmar, while still under firm military control, was ranked among the lowest in Freedom of Press index but has already ro...


Carmel Barrau
Apr 1, 2013

687 Endangered Turtles Seized by Indonesian Authorities

Apr 1, 2013 by Carmel Barrau

Earlier this month, a package containing nearly 800 pig-nosed turtles was seized by authorities as it passed through a Jakarta servicing airport. The package did not possess a shipping address but came from Papua. The turtles contained were all less than a month old and plans were made to release them back to their natural habitat soon. These turtles are protected from over-exploitation via the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species which they are listed under. The penalty...


Carmel Barrau
Apr 1, 2013

Potential Malaysian Incursion Funder Surrenders

Apr 1, 2013 by Carmel Barrau

Earlier this week, Datuk Seri Muhammad Ridzwan surrendered to police after being allegedly involved in funding the Sulu Sultanate for the armed incursion that hit the Sabah region in the island of Borneo in Malaysia back in February. This incident left many dead, most being Filipino and was a clear act of terrorism. Ridzwan, however, denies all allegations that connect him to funding this incident, publicly stating that his funds were transferred for the purposes of charity and support...


Carmel Barrau
Mar 24, 2013

A Thailand Fire Claims 36 Lives and a Refugee Camp

Mar 24, 2013 by Carmel Barrau

Earlier this week, a fire that started in Mae Hong Son province swept through a refugee camp in Northwestern Thailand. Many of those affected are refugees from Myanmar who escaped violence there some as early as 1992. While the 36 person death count is tragic, these events also leave over 2,000 homeless. Many of these people are Karen in descent who have been seeking greater autonomy in Myanmar since independence from Great Britain that lead to one of the longest running civil wars in ...


Carmel Barrau
Mar 24, 2013

Friar Neles Wins South Korea’s Prestigious Tji Hak-soon Justice and Peace Award

Mar 24, 2013 by Carmel Barrau

Earlier this week, Friar Neles Tebay Kebadabi won the Tji Hak-soon Justice and Peace Award from South Korea. A relatively humble man, he helped lead a stronger form of communication between the Jakarta government and the Papuan Peace Network that he lead. Using the PPN, he helped end conflict in the Papua region, the easternmost in Indonesia and was recognized by South Korea for his efforts in accepting people of all races and backgrounds in an effort to promote peace and understanding...


Carmel Barrau
Mar 24, 2013

Myanmar Religious Riots Cause a State of Emergency To Take Effect

Mar 24, 2013 by Carmel Barrau

Earlier this week, Myanmar President Thein Sein declared a state of emergency in the town of Meiktila that has been torn apart through religious violence. This lock down has closed the area off the journalists until the matters can be resolved. This violence between Buddhists and Muslim groups in this area had escalated in the recent days to an area ravaged by rioting and violence that have left a reported 20 dead. These acts of religious intolerance continue to burden the administrati...


Carmel Barrau
Mar 17, 2013

Inevitable Change in Vietnam

Mar 17, 2013 by Carmel Barrau

Fear has long been a prime catalyst for the lack of change or reform to the current Communist power in Vietnam. It is this same revolutionary Communist party that has lead to the ascension of Vietnam as a global power. However, the continual lack of transparency and perceived corruption has lead many to further question and challenge the current rule. With a 60% majority of current Vietnamese under 30, an inevitable lean towards democracy could be in order. The only problem being the c...


Carmel Barrau
Mar 17, 2013

One Of Cambodia's Most Historic Killers Dead

Mar 17, 2013 by Carmel Barrau

Earlier this week, leng Sary, one of the most prolific leaders behind what lead to the Khmer Rouge died most likely due to high blood pressure and heart complications. This death is particularly significant because Sary was one of the few members of the CPK communist party that has stood trial for crimes against Cambodia and its' people. The Khmer Rouge was one of the largest genocides in history resulting in the deaths of millions of Cambodians that Pol Pot and the CPK treated as expe...


Carmel Barrau
Feb 17, 2013

In A Divided Myanmar, Can Suu Kyi Be The Leader Needed?

Feb 17, 2013 by Carmel Barrau

Aung San Suu Kyi, known primarily as a symbol of freedom, progress, and democracy among the Burmese will have quite the mountain to climb looking ahead to the possibility of her ascending to Presidency in 2015. She has been seen as a fighter for the rights of the multi-ethnic Myanmar and a seeker of autonomy amongst all the people for whom Myanmar is home. But the population grows in diversity seemingly everyday and with it comes a growing divide amongst the people that has persisted ever ...


Carmel Barrau
Feb 17, 2013

BN Coalition Popular Media Plans get Gangnam-ed

Feb 17, 2013 by Carmel Barrau

In Malaysia, a pivotal general election looms closer as the Barisan Nasional (BN) coalition looks to seize power away from the Democratic Action Party. The DAP swept through the 2008 elections through its use of popular social media and its greater appeal to the youth and ethnically Chinese Malaysians that inhabit over 40% of the country. Realizing this trend and knowing that their stranglehold over more traditional forms of media will not secure victory, the BN coalition looked to hir...


Carmel Barrau
Feb 4, 2013

Laos-Thailand Freight Train Project to Be Completed by 2015

Feb 4, 2013 by Carmel Barrau

Under current work is a 3.5 km railway that will be able to carry full scale freight trains by what plans are calling a 2015 date. This is in the wake of mutual decisions by both countries to ramp up their bilateral trade by an estimated 8 billion dollars. This project was initially supposed to start in 2011 but delays have kept it from progressing forward. The railway itself it already has been in place since 1994 extending from Nong Khai to the Mekong river in Laos but used mainly fo...


Carmel Barrau
Feb 4, 2013

Abu Sayyaf Gunmen attacked by Philippine Rebels Leaving 22 Dead

Feb 4, 2013 by Carmel Barrau

Abu Sayyaf, a militant group linked with al-Qaida, were attacked by Muslim rebels linked with the Moro National Liberation Front earlier this week. The group was reportedly holding Philippine hostages that they refused to return which, in turn, sparked the violence. This will go down as the first reported violent confrontation between these two insurgent groups whom have coexisted for a number of years without such bloodshed being a factor. Official reports leave 22 men dead in the con...


Carmel Barrau
Feb 4, 2013

Norodom Sihanouk, Former Cambodian Monarch, Cremated

Feb 4, 2013 by Carmel Barrau

Norodom Sihanouk was cremated in an elaborate ceremony today in capital city Phenom Penh. Millions of Cambodians were estimated to have been in attendance to grieve and honor the charismatic leader thought by many as the father of modern Cambodia. For almost seven decades after his initial crowning in 1941, Sihanouk helped control the political side of Cambodia taking on such roles as monarch, prince, head of state, prime minister, head of the Khmer Rouge government, chairman of the post-c...


Carmel Barrau
Jan 27, 2013

700 Rohingya Muslims Face Deportation From Thailand

Jan 27, 2013 by Carmel Barrau

Earlier this week in Southern Thailand, over 700 Burmese Muslims face deportation after illegally entering Bangkok. They were awaiting relocation to Malaysia from the plantation they were staying at with the intention that they would be sold off to work on fishing boats. This plantation was being utilized as a trafficking middle ground for these people to be sold and eight people in total have been detained by officials on counts of having a hand in this trafficking. Unofficial sources poi...


Carmel Barrau
Jan 27, 2013

Despite Government Efforts, Indonesian Car Industry Keep Growing

Jan 27, 2013 by Carmel Barrau

Indonesia has become the fasting growing auto-industry in all of southeast Asia but government fear of an economic bubble caused them to put in place a law that demands a minimum of 30% down payment of car purchases when borrowing from banks. Customers however, went through these restraints and continued vehicle purchase. With this turn of events, many of other car companies from around the world, including American General Motors are trying to wiggle into the booming sales because the num...