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Students union leader vows to reignite protests

A Burmese students union leader has vowed to reignite education law protests following a parliamentary decision to amend the law without incorporating changes promised during four-way talks in February.

Prominent activist Aung Nay Paing of the Committee for Democratic Education Movement (CDEM), which spearheaded nationwide marches calling for education reform earlier this year, vowed to restart demonstrations.

Speaking at a press conference in Rangoon on Saturday at the conclusion of the 2nd Nationwide Conference for Education Reform in Burma, Aung Nay Paing said the government had promised to include 11 points demanded by student activists at four-way talks held earlier this year, but that these points were ignored when the revised bill was passed by the union parliament last week.


He said participants at the conference agreed to pressure the government over its broken promises and to get civil society organisations on board.

He said the CDEM is preparing a report to submit to President Thein Sein drawing his attention to the differences between the pledges made by government officials at the talks compared to the actual outcome of the revised bill.

The CDEM was one of the leading students unions involved in rallying supporters during marches which took place in Mandalay, Rangoon, Tavoy and several other towns and cities across Burma at the beginning of this year. The campaign came to a halt only when riot police began cracking down on demonstrators in March, a move culminating in a violent attack on a column of student activists in the Pegu Division town of Letpadan on 10 March when 127 sit-in protestors were arrested.




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