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Posts Tagged ‘Buddhist

Reuters Wins Pulitzer for Rangoon Death Picture

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Tuesday, April 8, 2008

A Reuters news agency photographer won the Pulitzer Prize for breaking news photography on Monday for a picture of a Burmese soldier shooting dead a Japanese video cameraman during a last September’s demonstrations in Rangoon.

The news agency’s Adrees Latif won for “his dramatic photograph of the Japanese videographer, sprawled on the pavement, fatally wounded during a street demonstration in Myanmar [Burma],” the Pulitzer Prize board said.

The 92nd annual Pulitzer Prizes in journalism, letters, drama and music were announced at Columbia University in New York City. The Public Service winner receives a gold medal, while winners in the remaining 20 categories receive $10,000.

Reuters carried news of the award together with a firsthand account by its Bangkok senior photographer Adrees Latif of how he took the pictures which won him a Pulitzer Prize. The pictures were taken in Burma during the protests in September last year and include the photo of Japanese video journalist Kenji Nagai being shot.

“Tipped off by protests against soaring fuel prices, I landed in Yangon [Rangoon] on 23 September, 2007, with some old clothes, a Canon 5D camera, two fixed lenses and a laptop.

“For the next four days, I went to Shwedagon Pagoda, two-three kilometers from the center of town and waited for the monks who had been gathering there daily at noon.

“Since I was at the same pagoda every day, dozens of people, including monks, asked me who I was and what I was doing. As the ruling military regime is notoriously secretive, my replies were guarded.

“Barefoot in maroon robes, and ringed by civilians, the monks chanted and prayed before starting their two-kilometer march to the Sule Pagoda in downtown Yangon [Rangoon]. Each day their numbers grew, from hundreds to thousands.

“By 27 September, the city had become packed with troops. Soldiers and government agents stood at street corners.

“Finding the Shwedagon Pagoda sealed off, I went to the middle of town to find groups of young people taunting soldiers at Sule.

“Within minutes, the crowd swelled from hundreds to a few thousand. The soldiers threw barbed wire coils across the roads.

“Knowing that hundreds of people were gunned down in similar circumstances in a 1988 uprising, I climbed an old crosswalk directly overhead, to get to one of the few spots offering a clear view.

“Below me, protesters were singing and waving flags; to the side, young men were thrusting their pelvises at the soldiers.

“At about 1.30 p.m. local time, two dark green, open-top army trucks approached, followed by dozens more packed with riot police. They were hit by a barrage of water bottles, fruit and abuse from the crowd.

“I had already locked on my 135mm lens and set my camera shutter speed to 1000, aperture to F/7.1 and ISO at 800. With the camera on manual, I wanted to stop any movement while offering as much depth-of-field as possible.

“Two minutes later, the shooting started. My eye caught a person flying backwards through the air. Instinctively, I started photographing, capturing four frames of the man on his back.

“The entry point of the bullet is clear in the first frame, with a soldier in flip flops standing over the man and pointing a rifle. In the second frame, the man is reaching over to try and film.

“More shots rang out. I flinched before getting off two more frames—one of the man pointing the camera at the soldier, and one of his face contorted in pain.

“Beyond him, the crowd scattered before the advancing soldier. The whole incident, which went on to reverberate around the world, was over in two seconds.

“I kept low on the bridge, capturing some more images from among a crowd taking cover. However, with soldiers firing shots and smoke grenades below, I had to get off the bridge.

“With adrenaline pumping through my body, I put my camera in my bag and followed the protests for another hour and a half. Feeling the demonstration had lost its strength, I made my way back to my hotel via backstreets and along a railway line.

“My initial caption read: “An injured man tries to photograph after police and military officials fired upon and then charged a crowd of thousands protesting in Yangon’s city center September 27, 2007.” Initially, I thought he was merely trampled. I had no idea he was dead.

“Two of the frames showed the man’s face. A few hours later his colleagues in Japan had identified him as Japanese video journalist Kenji Nagai.

“The images dominated front pages across the US and the world. Mourners at Nagai’s funeral in Japan clutched the picture, which played a role in the public outrage that prompted Tokyo to scale back aid to the ruling military junta.”

Copyright © 2008 Irrawaddy Publishing Group |

Written by Lwin Aung Soe

April 8, 2008 at 4:45 pm

World Focus on Burma (26-11-2007)

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  1. Too Many States Not on Course to Meet Clearance Deadlines
    Media For Freedom, Nepal –
    Government use of antipersonnel mines declined further, with only Myanmar/Burma and Russia continuing to lay new mines. Non-state armed groups in at least …
  2. Asean members have no time to waste
    Bangkok Post, Thailand –
    Philippine President Gloria Arroyo told Burma’s Thein Sein during a one-on-one meeting on Tuesday: ”The expectation of the Philippines is that if Myanmar …
  3. China must revalue yuan: Sarkozy, Australia –
    He said he wanted “vigorous” action from China on Myanmar, a close Chinese ally which crushed pro-democracy protests in September, sparking global outrage, …
  4. Burma Mobilizes To Protect 7M Kids Against Polio, New Zealand –
    Midwife Daw Kyin Nu is braving the cold rain in the hilly regions of Shan State, Myanmar, as she goes house to house to vaccinate children under the age of …
  5. Networking Central
    Philadelphia Jewish Voice, PA –
    … half way around the world, monks, and crowds of protestors marched in the streets of Yangon fighting for peace, freedom, and democracy in Burma/Myanmar. ..
  6. Sarkozy says China must revalue yuan
    Sydney Morning Herald, Australia –
    He said he wanted “vigorous” action from China on Myanmar, a close Chinese ally which crushed pro-democracy protests in September, sparking global outrage, …
  7. UN Burma fact-finder to speak at Brown
    Providence Journal, RI –
    Paulo sérgio Pinheiro, the UN special rapporteur for human rights, said he is hopeful that crisis in Burma (called Myanmar by the country’s ruling generals) …
  8. Myanmar PM to visit Cambodia
    Xinhua, China –
    26 (Xinhua) — Myanmar Prime Minister General Thein Sein will pay a goodwill visit to Cambodia in the near future at the invitation of his Cambodian …
  9. Just words
    Pinoy Press, Philippines –
    Here was the most authoritarian leader the Philippines has ever had since Ferdinand Marcos declaring , albeit indirectly, the members of Burma’s ruling …
  10. Boat sinks near Bangladesh-Burma sea border; 50 people missing
    Toronto Star, Canada –
    Several thousand Burmese refugees, mostly Muslims known as Rohingyas, have fled to Bangladesh over the years, claiming persecution by Burma’s military junta …
  11. Myanmar ruby boycott proposal raises red flag
    Los Angeles Times, CA –
    “The sale of these gems gives Burma’s military rulers quick cash to stay in power.” (Myanmar is also known as Burma.) But a successful boycott of what …
  12. Indian Buddhist monks protest against Myanmar junta
    Reuters –
    … emblems,” Kyaw Than of the All Burma Students League said by phone from the town. A monk-led protest was crushed by Myanmar’s ruling junta in September, …
  13. ASEAN pays price for embracing Burmese junta
    Vancouver Sun, Canada –
    … said: “The credibility and reputation of ASEAN has been called into question because of the situation in Myanmar [the name the junta calls Burma]. …
  14. Thailand’s counterfeit pipeline
    Columbus Dispatch, OH –
    … Thailand shares borders with countries that don’t place a premium on intellectual property rights: Cambodia, Laos, Malaysia and Myanmar, formerly Burma. …
  15. Sarkozy urges Beijing to take on greater global responsibility, Italy –
    … and the massacre of Myanmar’s population are the key objectives which French President Nicolas Sarkozy set himself on his arrival in China yesterday, …
  16. ASEAN still toothless after 40 years
    Asia Times Online, Hong Kong –
    The senior diplomat, charged with mediating national reconciliation between Myanmar’s ruling generals and its oppressed pro-democracy movement, …
  17. Report: Myanmar monks have vanished
    United Press International –
    The crackdown by the military junta, which has ruled Myanmar, formerly Burma, since 1989, began after pro-democracy protests were taken over by the monks. …
  18. UN asks Vietnam to help rein in Burma
    Bangkok Post, Thailand –
    Noting that Hanoi is close to Burma’s ruling junta, Gambari said he hoped Vietnam’s government would “further encourage the government of Myanmar to …
  19. NLD branch welcomes Suu Kyi’s statement, India –
    On Monday, the Burmese state-run newspaper, The New Light of Myanmar, carried statements by the ’88’ generation students (The Union of Myanmar), …
  20. USDA to hold pro-government rallies
    Democratic Voice of Burma, Norway –
    The state-run New Light of Myanmar newspaper has been running a number of announcements since early November from ethnic and other political groups who …

Written by Lwin Aung Soe

November 25, 2007 at 7:31 pm

World Focus on Burma (17-11-2007)

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  1. Will the generals dare release the Lady?
    Bangkok Post, Thailand – By LARRY JAGAN
    Tentative talks between Burma’s pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi and the country’s military rulers have begun, raising hopes that …
  2. ”Pipeline politics: India and Myanmar”
    The Daily Star, Bangladesh –
    Recent developments in the gas field projects of Myanmar have served to highlight the intense resource diplomacy that is ongoing in the region. …
  3. Myanmar claims no Buddhist monks killed in democracy protests
    Thai News Agency MCOT, Thailand –
    BANGKOK, Nov 16 (TNA) – The military government of Myanmar has admitted to a higher death toll during the recent democracy demonstrations than it had done …
  4. Myanmar admits nexus with ugs, India –
    Shillong, November 16: Myanmar (Burma) has formally admitted that its proposed crackdown on the North East insurgents in its soil suffered due the tacit …
  5. CWS appeal: Burma (Myanmar) humanitarian assistance
    Church World Service (press release), IN –
    The humanitarian crisis in Burma (Myanmar) is growing. Poverty in some regions has already reached critical levels. In mountainous regions, there is severe …
  6. Laura Bush urges Myanmar gem boycott
    AFP –
    Washington refers to the country as “Burma.” Bush said that Myanmar’s military rulers had just opened a potentially lucrative gem auction show in the …
  7. China unwavering in support for Myanmar
    Daily Times, Pakistan –
    “I don’t think there is any change in substantive issues in the Chinese stand on Burma,” R. Hariharan, a Myanmar expert at the Chennai Centre for Chinese …
  8. Congress urges ASEAN to suspend Myanmar
    Reuters –
    The military government of Myanmar, formerly known as Burma, was quoted by UN human rights envoy Paulo Sergio Pinheiro on Friday as acknowledging that at …
  9. US Senate asks ASEAN leaders to suspend Myanmar
    AFP –
    “I appreciate the strong comments from ASEAN member nations condemning the junta’s violent suppression of peaceful protesters in Burma (Myanmar),” said …
  10. Opinion: A corner of India that holds the key to Asia
    New Straits Times, Malaysia –
    The Indo-Burma Revolutionary Front (IBRF), founded in 1990, went defunct for lack of co-ordinated action and changing loyalties. Now, groups from Assam, …
  11. The Dictator Penalty
    Huffington Post, NY –
    Myanmar: Chevron refuses to withdraw from its partial ownership of natural gas fields and pipelines in the former Burma. Gas money supports one of the …
  12. Myanmar, the UN, and ASEAN
    Foreign Policy In Focus –
    Indonesia and the former Burma fraternized in the Asian-African Bandung Conference of 1955 and the Cold War’s Nonaligned Movement. …
  13. Situation in Myanmar ‘not sustainable’–Singapore PM, Philippines –
    … Lee Hsien Loong said the bloc had “no choice” but to condemn the bloody suppression of pro-democracy protests in member Myanmar (formerly Burma). …
  14. No exact figures on Burma crackdown
    PRESS TV, Iran –
    At least 15 people have been killed in the recent pro-democracy demonstrations in Myanmar’s biggest city, a UN human rights envoy says. …
  15. Asean to Keep Engaging Myanmar; US Urges Suspension (Update1)
    Bloomberg –
    Asean leaders will meet in a few days and they’ll discuss” the Myanmar issue. The military regime in Myanmar, formerly known as Burma, …
  16. Students wonder, ‘Asean, what’s that?’
    Bangkok Post, Thailand –
    Singapore (dpa) – Most students in Asean countries are familiar with the grouping, but nearly half have not visited another country in the bloc and 25 per …
  17. Asian leaders aim for green region, promote nuclear energy, Philippines –
    SINGAPORE–Asian leaders from 16 countries will pledge to increase the region’s forest cover by 2020 and promote the use of nuclear energy during their …
  18. More ethnic groups in Myanmar dispute Aung San Suu Kyi’s statement
    Xinhua, China –
    17 (Xinhua) — More ethnic peace groups in Myanmar are expressing disagreement over a recent statement by opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi, …
  19. Singapore PM urges ASEAN nations to boost economic ties, address …
    International Herald Tribune, France –
    ASEAN consists of Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.
  20. Asean Needs More Integration to Attract Investment, Lee Says
    Bloomberg –
    Asean members are Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, Brunei, the Philippines, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam.
  21. Myanmar junta chief sticks to “democracy roadmap”
    Reuters India, India –
    By Aung Hla Tun YANGON (Reuters) – Myanmar supremo Than Shwe, leader of the ruling military, has vowed that the only path to political reform is via the …
  22. The broken promises of military rule
    Boston Globe, United States –
    The scary part: comparing the off and on detention of Pakistan’s Benazir Bhutto with the longstanding house arrest of Burma’s Aung San Suu Kyi, Burma makes …
  23. (France joins Canada in imposing sanctions on Myanmar) French co-operation applauded
    Edmonton Journal, Canada –
    Bernier pointed out that Canada has implemented “the most severe economic sanctions in the world” against Myanmar, also known as Burma, and expressed his …
  24. China tells Burma to speed up its democratic reforms
    USA Today –
    YANGON, Burma (AP) — China called on Burma to speed up democratic reforms, state media reported Saturday — an unusual move for Beijing, …
  25. Students plan to protest Burma crackdown during ASEAN summit
    Nation Multimedia, Thailand –
    Singapore – University students plan to “make their voices heard” over Burma’s crackdown on pro-democracy protests while ASEAN leaders sign a landmark …
  26. Answers In The Past
    Tehelka, India –
    Full of counterintuitive views (he’s opposed to sanctions and wants tourists to visit Burma) historian Thant Myint-U is a former UN official and the author …
  27. ASEAN plays low against Myanmar
    Newstrack India, India –
    ASEAN accepted Burma’s membership downplaying US and European Union’s opposition. Singapore Prime Minister and Chairman of the association Lee Hsien Loong …
  28. Nobody in Asia supports sanctions against Myanmar: PM Lee
    Channel News Asia, Singapore –
    By S Ramesh, Channel newsasia | Posted: 17 November 2007 2109 hrs SINGAPORE: Nobody in Asia supports sanctions against Myanmar, Singapore’s Prime Minister …
  29. Myanmar set to sign rights charter at ASEAN summit
    Reuters –
    SINGAPORE (Reuters) – The Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) is unlikely to suspend Myanmar and the military-ruled country is set to sign the …
  30. Total petrol station demo in Wrexham
    Indymedia UK, UK –
    Wrexham Women for Peace and supporters held a demonstration at a local TOTAL petrol station in support of the people of Burma (Myanmar) this morning in …