DVB journalist launches book in Chiang Mai

Dec 11, 2008 (DVB), Former student activist and rebel soldier Htet Aung Kyaw, who now works as a journalist for the Democratic Voice of Burma, launched his book "Far from Home: 20 years in exile" in Chiang Mai yesterday.

In his book, Htet Aung Kyaw looks back over the past 20 years of the struggle for democracy in Burma, drawing on personal reminiscences and political analysis.

"Far from Home" includes many of Htet Aung Kyaw's articles for DVB, the Irrawaddy, the Bangkok Post and the Nation as well as new material on his experiences with the All Burma Students' Democratic Front.

At yesterday's launch, Htet Aung Kyaw spoke about his reasons for publishing the book.

"Now we are reaching 20 years of our democracy revolution and I was asking myself why it has taken 20 years already, and how many more it will take," he explained.

"Then I asked myself what I have done over these years and I had the idea of publishing a compilation of my articles and writing about my experience in the jungle as an ABSDF member," he said.

"I’m publishing this in the hope that it will at least give people something to think about for the struggle."

Htet Aung Kyaw said the focus of his writing had changed over the years.

"The articles I wrote about 10 years ago for various publications [, ] questioned why a lot of people in the exile movement, especially ABSDF fighters, had started to seek asylum in third countries at that time , had they always planned to do that since they came out of Burma?" he said.

"Ten years on from then, today my attention has switched to how far we have come on our journey."

Reporting by Naw Say Phaw and Siân Thomas

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