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Asia: Week in Brief [May 19-26, 2014]

Senior Editor:


After ceasefire talks with the Taliban fell short, the Pakistani military launched a major ground offensivein North Waziristan near the Afghanistan-Pakistan border.



Pakistani school children, particularly girls, have been the target of Islamic extremists.

Thousands of women and children led a protest in the province of Balochistan after the extremist armed group Tanzeemul Islamul Furqan shut down schools in the region by force.

Several activists alongside the Baloch Student Organization (BSO-Azad) arehunger striking to protest the Pakistani security forces’ alleged abduction of Baloch nationalist Zahid Baloch and hundreds of others.







Regional peace talks take place in Burma

The Restoration Council of Shan State (RCSS) announced that it would continue on the path of armed resistance if it fails to achieve its political aims during its negotiations with the Burmese government.

Talks between the Nationwide Ceasefire Coordination Team (NCCT) ethnic alliance and the government-led Union Peace-Making Work Committee (UPWC) ended after the parties agreed on a second draft of a peace agreement

The National Unity Party (NUP) stated it would protest if the Burmese parliament amends constitutional article 59(f), which would allow National League for Democracy (NLD) Leader Aung San Suu Kyi to legally run for the presidency.




Rohingya refugees receiving aid provisions

United States President Barack Obama decided to extend economic sanctions against Burma, citing the Burmese government’s role in the ongoing ethnic armed conflicts and its record of rampant human rights violations, especially in Rakhine State.

Bangladeshi authorities announced they had arrested over 1173 Rohingya refugees along the Bangladesh-Burma border since January 2014, but stated that it would take time to repatriate them on account of the humanitarian crisis in northern Rakhine State

The United Nations (UN) declared that worsening sanitary conditions in the displacement camps for Rohingya in Rakhine State might increase the spread of waterborne diseases.



Thai military confronting anti-coup protestors

The Thai army rounded up nearly 200 prominent protest leaders and politicians, including the ousted Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra, after leading a coup designed to “restore order and normality.”

The ailing King of Thailand Bhumibol Adulyadej is expected to give his approval to army chief and acting Prime Minister Gen. Prayuth Chan-ocha following the military coup that ousted former Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra and dissolved the Senate.  The King’s endorsement will give Gen. Chan-ocha the power to establish an interim constitution and form legislative committees.

In spite of warnings by the Thai army to vacate the streetsand increased media restrictions, protestors continue to rally against the military coup.


The aftermath of an explosion caused by separatists

A series of coordinated bomb attacks on convenience stores in southern Thailand resulted in the deaths of three people and injured over 60 others.







The insurgent group Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) expressed concern over the Philippine government’s delay in implementing the peace agreement signed in March 2014.


Chinese military during anti-terror operations

The Chinese government launched a regional security crackdown after deadly car bomb attacks on a marketplacein the city of Urumqi in the Xinjiang region killed 31 people and wounded 94 others.







A North Korean navy ship and a South Korean warship exchanged fire near the disputed territory of Yeonpyeong island.

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