February 11, 2008

Year of the Rat

More on the Burmese junta's roadmap to democracy.

Saturday's statement from the military leadership, broadcast on radio and television, announced: "Multi-party democratic elections will be held in 2010, according to the new constitution.

"It is suitable to change the military administration to a democratic, civil administrative system, as good fundamentals have been established.

"The country's basic infrastructure has been built, although there is still more to do in striving for the welfare of the nation."

NLD spokesman Nyan Win expressed surprise that the election had been planned before the results of the constitutional referendum were known.

"According to my understanding, the election date should be set up after the referendum results. I was surprised that they announced an election date without knowing the referendum results," he told the BBC.

The proposed constitutional changes have not been made public, but some suspect that they would in effect bar NLD leader Aung Sang Suu Kyi from office and perhaps ensure that a military leader was chosen.

The change in government in Thailand has put some hydroelectric dams being built in Burma on hold. Ten pilgrims were also killed in a boating accident in Burma over the weekend. Safety standards in Burma are very poor.

New Year rituals in New York's Chinatown.

Tens of thousands attended the Maharishi's funeral beside the Ganges.

Also, check out the cool Buddhist aggregator site Karmacino!

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