Editor-in-charge Nyunt Win (The Myanmar Times)
Demonstrating the beginning of a new era, a human rights journal is being published and receiving a positive response in Burma. The Journal of Human Rights and Democracy began publication in May. It is a monthly journal. The first month they printed 1000 copies but doubled that the following month. The journal sells for 1,500 kyat (U.S. $1.50). The magazine is currently funded by Norwegian People’s Aid. Free copies are provided to MPs, party members, related NGOs and at events.
Htoo Kyaw Win, MKS Publishing Assistant Editor (The Irrawaddy)
The Journal of Human Rights and Democracy is available in Rangoon, Naypyidaw and Mandalay. Currently the journal is only available in Burmese but they plan to make to print in English soon. Editor Nyunt Win was asked is the human rights crisis in Burma was improved under the civilian government,
Human rights violations have not completely stopped since the “civilian” government took power in 2011. A significant proportion of the population is still facing widespread violations, including intimidation from the authorities; the loss of land and property rights; alleged rapes and sexual harassment; persecution, discrimination and marginalisation of minority ethnic and religious groups; blockage of access to justice; influence of the executive and their cronies on the judiciary; and exploitation of labour and poor work conditions.
The promulgation of laws on freedom of assembly and expression mean we have seen improvements in exercising our basic human rights but there are still strings attached, such as Article 18 of the peaceful protest law. Rights activists are still often detained, jailed or intimidated, albeit to a lesser degree compared to the [military] era. The human rights crisis is worst in areas affected by the armed conflict. Local populations fear both parties and fall prey to human rights violations by both sides.