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Kyaw Hsan Hlaing

Yangon, Burma
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About Kyaw
Freelance journalist and researcher from Rakhine State, covering politics, humanitarian crisis, civil war, and military coup in Myanmar.
English Burmese
Feature Stories Content Writing Corporate Content
Politics Current Affairs War Reporter

How Your Brain Makes Utilitarian Decisions

05 Jun 2024  |  qoshe.com
Explores the brain's role in balancing conflicting preferences for the greater good, delving into the neuroscience behind utilitarian decision-making processes.

A New Era is Dawning For the People of Myanmar’s Rakhine State

08 Feb 2024  |  thediplomat.com
The Arakan Army (AA) has seized control of Mrauk-U and other towns in Myanmar's Rakhine State, signaling a potential shift towards independence for the region. The AA, under the leadership of Maj. Gen. Twan Mrat Naing and Brig. Gen. Dr. Nyo Twan Awng, has gained popularity and strength since its emergence in 2009, contrasting with the Arakan Liberation Army/Arakan Liberation Party. The AA's military successes and political roadmap, the 'Arakan Dream 2020,' have garnered support among the Rakhine people. Despite challenges such as ethnic tensions, political unrest, and the humanitarian crisis, there is hope for a new era of governance in Rakhine, potentially inspired by Singapore's model. The future of Rakhine's political trajectory remains uncertain, but the capture of Mrauk-U offers a glimmer of hope for peace, prosperity, and dignity for its people.

New Battlefront Emerging in Western Myanmar

14 Jan 2024  |  fulcrum.sg
The Arakan Army (AA) has made significant territorial gains against the State Administration Council (SAC) forces in Rakhine State, Myanmar, following the Operation 1027 offensive in late October. The conflict, which resumed in November 2023 after a year-long informal ceasefire, has seen the AA capture several townships and engage in over 100 clashes with the SAC, some of which were fierce battles. The SAC's response has included indiscriminate attacks on civilians and cultural heritage sites, suggesting a defensive stance. The AA's control of strategic areas has disrupted SAC supply routes and complicated Chinese infrastructure projects. Despite a trade and travel blockade by the SAC, the AA's advances continue, potentially bolstering armed resistance across Myanmar.

As war dynamics change, localisation is now vital for effective aid in Myanmar’s Rakhine

29 Nov 2023  |  The New Humanitarian
The intensifying conflict in Myanmar has led to increased humanitarian needs, highlighting the importance of supporting local community groups that form the response effort's backbone. The end of an informal ceasefire in Rakhine State has resulted in civilian casualties and displacement. Local organizations, often more adaptable and efficient than international NGOs, face challenges due to military blockades and a restrictive NGO registration law. The article advocates for a shift towards locally led responses, emphasizing the operational advantages and urging international actors to take immediate actions to support local networks, adopt a bottom-up approach, and use flexible funding methods.

‘Operation 1027’: A Turning-Point For Myanmar’s Resistance Struggle?

27 Oct 2023  |  thediplomat.com
Myanmar's resistance struggle against the military junta, which seized power in February 2021, may be reaching a turning point with 'Operation 1027'. Launched by the Three Brotherhood Alliance, the operation aims to combat junta forces in northern Shan State. Despite international distractions from other global events, the Myanmar military has been unable to consolidate its coup, facing resistance from various groups. The military has imposed martial law in numerous townships and committed human rights abuses. The recent offensive in Kachin State was repelled by the Kachin Independence Army with support from allies. 'Operation 1027' has made rapid progress, capturing towns and military outposts, and receiving support from various anti-regime militias and the National Unity Government. The operation's success could signal a shift in Myanmar's armed revolution, challenging the junta's military capability and potentially altering the political landscape.

Coup, cyclone and a new bond between Myanmar’s Rohingya and Rakhine

31 Jul 2023  |  www.aljazeera.com
In Myanmar's Rakhine State, historical tensions between the Rohingya and Rakhine communities have been exacerbated by military propaganda and violent conflicts. Despite this, the author, a Rakhine native, has witnessed a growing bond between the two ethnic groups, particularly after shared experiences of oppression and the impact of Cyclone Mocha. The author's organization promotes social cohesion, and recent informal interactions suggest progress towards peace. However, discriminatory policies against the Rohingya persist, and international organizations face restrictions in providing aid. The author remains hopeful that continued collaboration can lead to a more harmonious society.

Understanding the Arakan Army

01 Feb 2023  |  www.stimson.org
The Arakan Army (AA), established in 2009, has become a significant force in Myanmar, particularly in Rakhine State. Despite the military coup in February 2021, Rakhine has remained relatively stable due to an informal ceasefire and the AA's focus on political objectives. The AA's growth is attributed to effective leadership, strategic mobilization, constrained political space, and alliance-building with other ethnic armed groups. The AA has also been involved in the nationwide resistance against the junta, cooperating with allied forces and supporting resistance groups. A truce was reached in November 2022 to address the humanitarian crisis in Rakhine, but the potential for conflict remains. The AA's relationship with the National Unity Government (NUG) is evolving, with discussions on political rights and anti-junta movements. The junta's actions in Rakhine could lead to renewed fighting, and the AA's stance on the junta's planned elections is dismissive.

Japan needs to ratchet up pressure on Myanmar's junta

21 Oct 2022  |  www.japantimes.co.jp
In response to intensified armed clashes in Myanmar, the military regime has blocked the United Nations and international humanitarian organizations from accessing six townships, exacerbating the humanitarian crisis. The junta has also restricted medical supplies and arrested medical professionals. The Arakan Army, an ethnic revolutionary group, continues to fight for the self-determination of the Rakhine people.

Fighting in Maungdaw: A Strategic Turning Point in Western Myanmar?

16 Sep 2022  |  thediplomat.com
Intense clashes between the Arakan Army (AA) and the Myanmar military in northern Rakhine State have escalated, with significant strategic implications for the AA's long-term goal of establishing an independent Arakan. The AA has made substantial territorial gains, including seizing key military camps, and has engaged in negotiations with India regarding the Kaladan Multi-Modal Transit Transport Project. The conflict has displaced thousands and drawn international attention, particularly from Bangladesh, which has protested cross-border shelling. The AA's control over Maungdaw could enhance its legitimacy and facilitate cooperation with international bodies on issues like Rohingya repatriation.

Myanmar's Military Cracks Down on Dissent Amid Coup

15 Jan 2022  |  Time
The article discusses the recent actions taken by Myanmar's military following the coup. It highlights the crackdown on dissent, particularly focusing on the arrest of activists and writers. These arrests are portrayed as an effort by the military to suppress any opposition and to dismantle the progress made towards political liberalization in the country. The situation is presented as a significant setback for democracy in Myanmar, with the military seeking to consolidate power and silence voices of resistance.

Kyaw Hsan Hlaing

15 Jan 2022  |  Al Jazeera
Kyaw Hsan Hlaing is a recognized journalist and researcher who focuses on a range of issues affecting Myanmar. His work encompasses political transitions, human rights, civil war, and ethnic affairs within the country. He is known for his award-winning journalism and is active on social media, particularly Twitter, where he can be followed under the handle @kyawhsanhlaing1. The brief description does not provide specific details about his articles or the content he covers, but it emphasizes his areas of expertise and the recognition he has received for his contributions to journalism.

About Me

15 Jan 2022  |  Journo Portfolio
Kyaw Hsan Hlaing is a political analyst and writer from Burma, known for his extensive work on the country's political dynamics, ethnic issues, and armed conflicts, particularly in relation to the 2021 military coup. His contributions as a guest writer for the Pulitzer Centre covered the intense armed conflict in western Burma between 2018 and 2020. He has been recognized for his work with awards from the Human Rights Press Awards and the Sigma Delta Chi Awards, and was a finalist for the SOPA awards. Kyaw Hsan Hlaing is currently furthering his studies at the University of Hawai'i, where he is affiliated with the East-West Center.

Myanmar’s military coup prolongs misery for Rohingya in Rakhine

06 Jan 2022  |  Al Jazeera
The article discusses the precarious situation of the Rohingya community in Myanmar's Rakhine State following the military coup on February 1. Military officials have warned the Rohingya against any association with the Arakan Army (AA), an armed group fighting for ethnic minority rights. Despite the threat, the Rohingya have continued to engage with the AA, which has been providing them with fair treatment and administration. The military has intensified restrictions on Rohingya movement, with recent arrests and increased travel checkpoints. The 2017 crackdown by the Myanmar military forced over 700,000 Rohingya to flee to Bangladesh, and those remaining face harsh conditions and limitations. The National Unity Government (NUG), formed in opposition to the military coup, has pledged to recognize Rohingya citizenship and cooperate with international justice, but skepticism remains among the ethnic Rakhine community.

'My friends are being burned': Atrocities mount under Myanmar's junta

15 Dec 2021  |  sg.news.yahoo.com
The article details the atrocities committed by Myanmar's military junta, including the burning of 11 villagers in Don Taw. The junta's actions are in retaliation for resistance attacks and have led to widespread human rights abuses, including killings, torture, and rape. International organizations like the United Nations and Human Rights Watch have condemned these actions, and efforts are being made to document the abuses for future accountability. The resistance against the junta, including groups like the People’s Defense Force, continues to grow, ensuring ongoing conflict and brutality.

The Silent Terror of Survivor’s Guilt

09 Sep 2021  |  www.vice.com
The article discusses the psychological impact of survivor's guilt on individuals from Myanmar, particularly in the wake of the military coup and the ongoing conflict. It highlights personal accounts of those who have left the country and now live with the guilt of being safe while others suffer. The condition, which can affect even those not directly witnessing traumatic events, is explored through the experiences of various individuals, including Daniel Nyan, who works with an international child protection organization, and Nandar, a feminist who has dedicated her podcast to discussing mental health after the coup. Mental health resources in Myanmar are scarce, and the article underscores the importance of acknowledging and addressing survivor's guilt to help individuals cope with the emotional toll of the crisis.

Arakan Army extends administrative grip on Rakhine State

06 Aug 2021  |  frontiermyanmar.net
The Arakan Army and its political wing, the United League of Arakan, are advancing their objective of administrative control in Rakhine State, Myanmar. They have issued a stay-at-home order due to COVID-19, with 75% compliance, and announced plans for a judiciary and legal dispute resolution. The AA has gained popular support and is handling administrative and judicial responsibilities, claiming influence over two-thirds of the state. Civil society groups and Rakhine political parties have largely welcomed the ULA's initiatives. However, there are concerns about potential abuse of power by the AA. The AA is also involved in COVID-19 prevention efforts and has been removed from the terrorist list by the military, which seized power in Myanmar. The military's response to the pandemic has been criticized, and the AA is working to secure vaccines and enforce health measures.

Arakan Army Seeks to Build ‘Inclusive’ Administration in Rakhine State

01 Aug 2021  |  thediplomat.com
The Arakan Army (AA) has expanded its administrative and judicial mechanisms in Rakhine State, Myanmar, aiming for an inclusive governance model involving all ethnic groups, including the Rohingya Muslims. The AA's political wing, the United League of Arakan (ULA), has established a dispute resolution mechanism and is paying salaries to its judicial staff to ensure justice. The AA's inclusive approach contrasts with the previous central governments' discriminatory policies, gaining support from the local population. The AA's efforts come amid ongoing political turmoil following Myanmar's military coup, which has led to widespread protests and violence.

How governments deploy internet shutdowns, and how users resist

30 Jul 2021  |  Rest of World
The article explores various ways governments around the world deploy internet shutdowns and the methods users employ to resist these restrictions. It highlights the severe impact of internet blackouts on human rights and digital economies, with specific examples from Myanmar, Kashmir, and Latin America. The Indian government is noted for leading in internet shutdowns, while the Burmese military government is criticized for extensive blackouts. The piece also discusses the use of DDoS attacks as a censorship tool and the efforts of activists to maintain digital freedom.

Myanmar’s political crisis is fueling an ‘uncontrolled’ outbreak of COVID-19

27 Jul 2021  |  latimes.com
Myanmar is facing a severe COVID-19 outbreak exacerbated by a military coup that has led to political chaos and a healthcare system collapse. With less than 3% of the population vaccinated and the Delta variant spreading, the junta is accused of using the pandemic to suppress dissent, arresting healthcare workers, and ignoring disease spread in prisons. The official case and death numbers are believed to be underreported, and the economy is expected to shrink by 18%. A parallel National Unity Government has limited influence, and international concern is growing over the potential for new variants to emerge and spread regionally.

Myanmar’s political crisis is fueling an ‘uncontrolled’ outbreak of COVID-19

27 Jul 2021  |  San Diego Union-Tribune
Myanmar is facing a severe COVID-19 outbreak, exacerbated by the military coup and political unrest. The healthcare system is near collapse, with most medical workers on strike. The military junta is accused of using the pandemic to suppress dissent, arresting healthcare workers and restricting oxygen supplies. Testing is limited, and the true impact of the virus is likely underreported. The economy is suffering, with the World Bank predicting an 18% contraction. The National Unity Government has limited influence, and prisons are becoming COVID-19 hotspots. International concern is growing over the potential for new variants to spread regionally and globally.

After Myanmar’s Military Coup, Arakan Army Accelerates Implementation of the ‘Way of Rakhita’

30 Apr 2021  |  thediplomat.com
Following Myanmar's military coup, the Arakan Army (AA) has been advancing its governance agenda in Rakhine State, known as the 'Way of Rakhita', aiming for self-determination and restoration of sovereignty. The AA, previously engaged in violent conflict with the military (Tatmadaw) and designated as a terrorist group by the ousted National League for Democracy (NLD) government, has seen a cessation of hostilities and a removal of the terrorist label by the military junta. The AA has been implementing its own administrative and tax systems, and despite initial silence, has expressed solidarity with national protests against the military's violence. The junta's actions, including releasing political prisoners and lifting internet shutdowns, appear to be an attempt to gain favor with the Rakhine people, amidst concerns of renewed conflict and the plight of internally displaced persons.

Protests Unite Myanmar’s Ethnic Groups Against Common Foe

29 Mar 2021  |  Foreign Policy
The article discusses the unification of Myanmar's ethnic groups in protests against the military coup led by the Tatmadaw. It highlights the shift in perspective among the Bamar majority, who are now expressing solidarity with ethnic minorities and advocating for federal democracy. The General Strike Committee of Nationalities (GSCN) has gained support for its call to abolish the 2008 constitution and establish a new federal system. The article also covers the historical context of ethnic conflicts and the role of ethnic armed organizations in countering the military regime. Despite ongoing violence, there is a growing sense of unity and hope for a more inclusive political future in Myanmar.

Women Smash Gender Taboos to Fight Myanmar Junta

08 Mar 2021  |  www.vice.com
In Myanmar, women protesters are challenging cultural taboos and the military junta by using traditional skirts, known as htameins, as flags during demonstrations. This act is a direct challenge to patriarchal norms and superstitions that a man's essence can be lost if he passes under a woman's lower clothing. The protests, which have been met with violence resulting in at least 50 deaths, are part of a broader movement against the military coup that took place on February 1. Women's organizations have added demands for gender equality and an end to gender-based violence to the protest objectives. The movement has seen increased male support for women's participation and leadership, and there is hope that these changes will persist in a new society if the military dictatorship is overthrown.

Medics risk lives to treat injured in Myanmar anti-coup protests

03 Mar 2021  |  www.aljazeera.com
In Myanmar, medics like Aye Nyein Thu are risking their lives to provide emergency medical assistance to victims of state forces' crackdown on anti-coup protests. The military coup on February 1 has led to mass protests and a Civil Disobedience Movement, with authorities responding with increasing violence, including live and rubber bullets, resulting in about 30 deaths and at least 200 injuries. Healthcare workers are operating outside government facilities due to strikes affecting formal health systems, with some teams ceasing operations due to direct attacks. Despite the risks, medical volunteers continue to support protesters, treating injuries and coordinating care amidst surveillance and threats from authorities.

Facebook is still censoring groups fighting the military coup in Myanmar

01 Mar 2021  |  Rest of World
Facebook's continued censorship of groups opposing Myanmar's military coup is hampering the efforts of activists and pro-democracy campaigners. Despite the political shift following the coup, Facebook's policies still penalize ethnic armed organizations and their supporters, limiting their ability to communicate and organize. Activists argue that Facebook needs to update its moderation policies to reflect the current political landscape and support the anti-coup movement.

Myanmar military tries ‘divide and rule’ in bid to cement power

15 Feb 2021  |  www.aljazeera.com
Following the military coup in Myanmar, the Tatmadaw has been attempting to incorporate ethnic political party leaders into its administration, employing divide-and-rule tactics. Despite the betrayal felt by supporters like Saw Mu Daw, some ethnic party leaders have joined the military government, seeking to negotiate for federalism and self-determination. Mass protests and strikes have erupted nationwide, with demands varying from the release of Aung San Suu Kyi and restoration of the elected government to the overhaul of the 2008 constitution. Ethnic groups, while sharing the goal of toppling the military regime, also seek recognition of their federalist aspirations, which they feel were overlooked by the NLD. The Tatmadaw has made gestures to win over ethnic groups, such as lifting internet restrictions in Rakhine State and releasing political prisoners. However, there is widespread skepticism about the military's intentions, and calls for unity against the common enemy.

Rakhine: Where the military is more feared than the coronavirus

14 Sep 2020  |  www.aljazeera.com
In Rakhine State, Myanmar, civilians face dual threats from the COVID-19 pandemic and escalating violence between the Tatmadaw and the Arakan Army. Recent attacks by the military have displaced thousands, exacerbating the humanitarian crisis. Despite partial lockdowns and calls for a ceasefire, the conflict continues, hindering efforts to combat the virus and provide aid. The situation is dire, with civilians more fearful of military violence than the coronavirus, and humanitarian access severely restricted.

Kyaw's confirmed information

Jan 2022

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